The magnificent hummingbird

As the pandemic wore on last summer, I hung a hummingbird feeder from a portable metal stand outside the window where I set up my home office. The wind kept knocking the stand over. I managed to nick the stand with my lawn tractor one day, and to my great dismay the glass portion of the feeder shattered when it hit the ground.

I decided to try again this year, although I chose a much better place: a shepherd’s hook sunk into the ground near the kitchen window looking out toward our front yard.

It took a while for the hummingbirds to find the nectar I mixed from concentrate. When they showed up, they brought instant joy.

I spotted one out a back window last weekend and figured there was a good chance the bird would zip around to the front of the house. I grabbed my camera and, heading out the door, spotted the bird hovering near the feeder. Alas, the screen door slammed shut behind me, scaring off the bird.

I parked on a bench on the porch for a short while, and soon the bird — a female ruby-throated hummingbird — returned. She lit on the opposite side of the feeder for a bit, then shifted to the feeding ports where I could see her. My first shots were out of focus, and she flew off.

Patience is not a virtue I have in abundance, but I decided to wait quietly in case she’d come back. A few minutes later, she did, and I got a few good shots. She even hovered for a few seconds near the porch, but I wasn’t fast enough to catch her with my camera. She came back two more times, and I grabbed a few more shots before heading in from the heat.

I hope to go out again soon, hoping (like the female?) to catch a male.

Published by Dan

University media executive by day, blogger by night, I am a well-traveled resident of New Jersey

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