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The damp gray weather continues, but so does the hummingbird activity, and all those that came remained dry and were treated to some spectacular chases, with hummers flying at great speed a few inches apart from each other through narrow gaps and along twisting flight paths, with the sudden burst of remarkable acceleration (up to 10G!) for which they are famous. However, quite a few people with reservations failed to show; as we say in Yorkshire, "there's nowt so qeer as folk".
This year I planted a seedling of scarlet runner bean, Phaseolus coccinea (common or string bean is P. vulgaris), which is well known as a good hummingbird plant. It's already reached 8 feet on a bamboo pole, and indeed the hummers seem to like it, as shown in the following videos. I'm looking forward to a bonus - the beans themselves! The fellow enjoying these flowers is a young male - at the beginning you can see 2 dark spots on the throat, the diagnostic "drops of blood" that are the beginning red gorget feathers. Over the winter in Central America all the jewel-like ruby throat feathers will emerge. The first video is my usual 2X slo mo, and the second, which blurrily shows the young fellow driven off by the attack of another hummer (possibly the adult male) is at 8X slo mo. The white flower in the background is summersweet, Clethra alnifolia - not a hummer plant but with an intoxicating perfume.