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Friday, July 30, 2010

Injured hummer in Alpine

There's a pathetic female Black-chinned Hummingbird with a damaged bill at my feeders in Alpine. It acts normal, and I see it has been banded, probably a few months ago, but I don't have high expectations for it survival. I'm hoping to have a licensed bander trap it tomorrow and see if the bill is fixable.



Thursday, July 29, 2010

Rain and no mosquitos

It doesn't get much better than that. There shouldn't be any more mosquitos until the first big rain next spring or summer. The gambusias are numerous enough now to keep them in check.

There aren't many birds right now and no migrant hummers yet, so I had to content myself with photographing the same old birds. I know you're tired of looking at Lucifer photos. This one is probably a juvenile male without any gorget feathers yet.



The next one is the same individual that I posted July 17 when he had one gorget feather. Now he has two. The second feather is in the center of his throat. Unfortunately, I didn't get a photo showing both feathers at the same time.



Monday, July 26, 2010

Colorado camping

Just got back from a week camping in Colorado, our annual fishing trip. (I don't fish.) I hung feeders and had 4 species of hummers there: Black-chinned, Calliope, Rufous, and Broad-tailed. We camp along the Little Navaho River. Note attached kitchen and my own outhouse in back.


Calliope below. Some years I get them at my oasis, but fall migrants haven't  arrived there yet.


Rufous Hummingbirds viciously defended the feeders. This one is a male.


When I got home we had an inch of rain so I had water to pump yesterday. I saw a neat butterfly, which a friend IDd as a Texan Crescent.


Saturday, July 17, 2010

Juvenile Lucifer Hummingbird

Early this morning I photographed this feisty juvenile male Lucifer Hummingbird that we banded several days ago. He seems proud of his one gorget feather as well as his one adult tail feather. (Same side) I hope he survives and returns here next year to be captured and remeasured for comparisons. He's very aggressive at the feeders which is unusual for a Lucifer. Tomorrow we leave for a week in Colorado. I'm going to miss my hummers and oasis.



Monday, July 12, 2010

Oasis is lush today

With plenty of rain and cool temperatures things are thriving. The mosquitos had been real bad but they finally lessened enough to where I enjoyed an afternoon manicuring, watering, and pruning some to keep the pathways usable. The tanks are all full and if I don't use the water the next rain will just go down the arroyo. Besides, in the past week I've only had .4" and I like to give them more like the equivalent of one inch per week. The first photo is of a Texas Madrone with a water feature behind taken from the viewing bench. The horsetails have escaped their containers so this winter I should clean out the pond. I'll be surprised if I actually do, though.


The photo below is what I call the wildlife pond. That's where I had the Sora in May.


Next is the hummingbird viewing area.


Next is path leading to the water feature's viewing bench.


And here is an example of a path that is threatening to become overgrown. This image was taken after I trimmed a bunch along it. There's never an end to the work to keep the oasis a managed natural habitat, but I love the work.