BASICS: "Hummingbirds.....where is the person, I ask, who, on observing this glittering fragment of the rainbow, would not pause, admire, and turn his mind with reverence..." (J. J. Audubon).
This is a blog about my summer life at the Baiting Hollow Hummingbird Sanctuary, at my winter garden, Calypso, in the Bahamas, and aspects of life in general.
This private sanctuary is now permanently closed to the general public, as a result of a lawsuit brought by a neighbor. Only my friends and personal guests may visit (

Friday, December 26, 2014

Listen to Male Woodstar hummingbird buzzing

I recently bought myself a Christmas present - an external directional microphone which mounts on top of my Canon Vixia G30 videocamera. Yesterday I tried it out for the first time, hoping to pick up the characteristic buzzing sound that the male hummer makes as he visits flowers.  It works! He's not buzzing all the time - I think only when he's either accelerating or hovering in certain ways., andyou have to listen very carefully, using a proper speaker or headset (there's also some background noise)As in my previous movie, he's visiting firecracker - not the same very large clump as before, but a smallerclump that's just outside the back door of our house "Seastar", where I'm staying at the moment.
There are actually 3 houses at Calypso: Seastar, Woodstar and Morningstar - see We move around between the houses depending on whether family or friends are staying with us, but on first arrival here we tend to start in Seastar. All a bit complicated and impractical, but there's logic behind it.
Bear in mind that the bird was about 12 feet away from the microphone, and the buzzing is quite subtle at that distance; I will try to get a much better, closer recording.


  1. Thank you for sharing this video .. I miss my little humming friends !! I could hear the humming very well !! .. Enjoy your stay !! carolyn

  2. Carolyn - glad you enjoyed the video, and could hear the buzzing - there is some continuous background sound (one can almost always hear the Atlantic waves breaking on the beach, and often also the bigger waves breaking on the outer reef, about a mile offshore). But I think I can get better results, if I get closer. The buzzing the male makes is a bit different from the humming sound that all hummingbirds make as they hover, which can only be heard from a few feet away. This buzzing is a louder version of regular humming that seems to occur during brief accelerations, particularly from the adult male. I think it partly acts as a warning.

  3. Your videos are the best advertisement for Curious, which would you recommend for a first time stay and what times of year are hummingbird sightings possible there?

  4. Oh dear I should have just read the website first, it's all explained there, thanks! :)