Just sharing this week's series of photos of Jewel... (I don't often name things unless I must, but the hummingbirds have so much personality that they somehow do end up with names!) This is the male of our pair of resident Costa's Hummingbird (Calypte costae). The female is irridescent green and white.
I am still amazed that these birds feed freely from the lavender; the florets are so small that I don't imagine there is much nectar in them. But Jewel simply moved from one stalk to the next, much the same way as the bees do.
I couldn't have asked for a more perfect color combination!
Happily, he was willing to come fairly close while feeding. I find that the Costa's Hummingbirds are much less flighty (quite literally) around me. Our male Anna's Hummingbird won't let me get very close, especially with the camera, to which he seems to have taken a dislike; the female, though she will feed nearby, has a tendency to slip behind flowers so I can't see her very well! But both of our Costa's are much more relaxed little birds. They seem to have a calmer personality. And Jewel was certainly not camera shy!
Some days ago, I was fortunate enough to watch part of a courtship display. The male first darts upward to a great height, then plunges rapidly down, while his wings produce a single sharp "Pop." In this case there was only one such flight before the little pair whirled away in a cloud of hummingbird chatter. No photos of any of it, I'm afraid!
But I hope you enjoy Jewel's portraits among the lavender!
Weather Diary: Overcast; High: 55 F (13 C)/Low: 45 F (7 C); Humidity: 62%-100%. There is a wind advisory (the wind hasn't arrived yet, but I'm sure it will...) and heavy rain forecast - not looking forward to it for the sake of the horses!
Diana Studer (Friday, 20 January 2017 15:43)
I sometimes wonder if that great beady eye and sinister click, don't add up to predator for a little creature. Run for your life!
Kris P (Friday, 20 January 2017 16:38)
He's a beautiful fellow! I wonder if he knows just how good he looks with purple flowers against an orange background?!
Amy@smallsunnygarden (Friday, 20 January 2017 17:18)
Diana - They are known to take small insects as well as nectar, but they are also small enough to run some risk with very large spider webs... They are considered good to have around fruit trees for fruit fly control though.
Amy@smallsunnygarden (Friday, 20 January 2017 17:20)
Kris - I suspect he knows... ;-) At any rate, we have had him "show off" by hovering in front of us in return for admiring comments!
rusty duck (Saturday, 21 January 2017 04:53)
Just gorgeous. And perfect colour matching Amy!
Amy@smallsunnygarden (Saturday, 21 January 2017 11:16)
Jessica - I knew I was in luck when I saw those purples together... and had my camera handy! ;-) Thanks so much - and welcome back!
Cathy (Sunday, 22 January 2017 02:07)
Stunning! The little creature looks so delicate and those colours are simply fabulous. Well done for getting such great pictures Amy!
Annie_h (Sunday, 22 January 2017 10:48)
Oh wow just discovered your blog and so happy, what amazing photos of Jewel amongst your Lavenders. Beautiful. What colours. Will browse through your other posts now.
Island Threads (Sunday, 22 January 2017 12:23)
Amy@smallsunnygarden (Monday, 23 January 2017 13:52)
Thanks - so glad you enjoyed the pictures, Cathy :) It was such a treat getting to watch him in the lavender!
Amy@smallsunnygarden (Monday, 23 January 2017 14:18)
Thanks so much, Annie - so glad you came by! :)
Amy@smallsunnygarden (Monday, 23 January 2017 14:19)
Thank you so much, Frances :) Hope you have a great week!
Kate R (Monday, 23 January 2017 17:51)
Hi Amy! I apologize profusely for not having been over sooner and then I realized that you now have a new site which confused me further - so sorry. I have resubscribed so hopefully I will receive notifications now. I had to take a little break recently from blog land but hopefully I can pick up again. As always your photographs are absolutely stunning - the colors and clarity are just amazing! Congratulations on the new site too - It is beautiful!
- Kate xx
Amy@smallsunnygarden (Tuesday, 24 January 2017 10:49)
Hi Kate! I've known you were quite busy - if I understand rightly you have had quite a marathon with the house and holidays and all! So sorry about the confusion over the blog; I had so much trouble with comments not coming through that I decided to get out of the Blogger/WordPress spiral altogether... I also thought that on this website it would be a lot easier to post my little plant encyclopedia - which it will be as soon as I can get it together...! So glad you enjoyed my little hummer here - and great to see you back :)