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Hummingbird Garden

Hummingbird Garden book

Hummingbird Garden book

In The Hummingbird Garden, bird and gardening expert Mathew Tekulsky uncovers the simple steps any gardener can take to attract and enjoy one of nature’s most beautiful creatures. He introduces the reader to hummingbird habits and reveals the regions where they live and migrate.

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It’s a Hummingbird’s Life

It's a Hummingbird's Life

It’s a Hummingbird’s Life

It’s a Hummingbird’s Life is an intimate view of the busy, fascinating world of these birds.

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A Field Guide to Hummingbirds of North America (Peterson Field Guides(R))

Hummingbirds (Peterson Field Guides)

Hummingbirds (Peterson Field Guides)

Hummingbirds, a Peterson Field Guide, covers 31 North American species. With more than 250 color photos and 33 maps, this is the most comprehensive field guide to hummingbirds.

Introductory chapters cover the natural history of hummingbirds, ways to attract and feed them, and major hot spots in the United States and Canada for observing these fascinating birds.

The 31 color plates illustrate 28 species, 7 hybrid combinations, 3 forms of albinism, and 4 species of sphinx moths often mistaken for hummingbirds.

Species accounts provide in-depth information on plumage, molt, songs and calls, wing sounds, similar species, behavior, habitat, distribution, taxonomy, and conservation concerns.

Detailed, up-to-date range maps show breeding, non-breeding, and year-round distribution, migration routes, and records outside expected areas of occurrence. For a few widespread migratory species, separate maps illustrate expected spring arrival dates.

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Hummingbirds of North America: Attracting, Feeding, and Photographing

Hummingbirds of North America

Hummingbirds of North America

In Hummingbirds of North America

“Ace photographer Dan True conveys his passion for these buzzing aeronauts by describing all 16 species of North American hummers, listing their favorite flowers and going into detail about their habits, courtship, and distribution. He then tells us how to photograph them as he does with such consummate skill. Here in one book is all you could hope to know about our hummingbirds north of the border.”–Roger Tory Peterson

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Living in a Mountain Paradise, with Hummingbirds

Each of us has our own idea of what constitutes paradise. But of those who have experienced life at Cullasaja Club in the beautiful Blue Ridge Mountains of North Carolina, almost everyone agrees that it comes pretty close.

Located near Highlands, NC, a summer resort and health resort town dating back to the 1880s, Cullasaja Club, one of the finest of private NC Golf Clubs, is a small private community with fewer than 300 homes. With easy access to every amenity and the quiet and security of a friendly, closely knit community, Cullasaja residents and visitors can relax amidst stunning mountain views and simply enjoy nature and the company of friends and family.

Ruby-throated hummingbirds nest in the area, and with the natural, forested environment, they can be seen hovering around feeders or just flitting through the beautiful grounds and gardens. Nature walks in the forest, great views from the golf course, and the way houses are nestled into the wooded terrain allow for lots of sightings of hummingbirds and other beautiful birds and wildlife. (more…)

Hummingbird Watching with Golf and Beach Club

If you love hummingbirds, you want to be able to watch them from your windows every day—not just on occasional walks in the woods. Many people choose to live where they can watch hummingbirds while having their morning coffee, eating lunch, having cocktails on the balcony—or just anytime during the day.

Why not also choose a place that has other amenities to entertain family and guests throughout the night as well as the day? Golfing, swimming, spa, fine dining, tennis, fitness club, beach club, and other activities are all part of life at the Orchid Island Golf and Beach Club at Vero Beach, Florida.

Kids interrupting your morning meditation on the wonders of hummingbirds? Send them to take tennis lessons. Guests eager to chat when you have work you have to get done? Send them to the spa, the beach, or the fitness club to work off some of that excess energy.

If there’s a golfer in your family, he or she will be delighted with the challenging and scenic golf course designed by Arnold Palmer. You’ll hardly ever see them before dinnertime.

One of the great things about the beautiful Florida climate of the Vero Beach area is that golf, tennis and other outdoor activities can be enjoyed almost all year long—even on warm winter days. One of the other joys of the area is the ease of attracting hummingbirds. (more…)

Finding Your Hummingbird Heaven in Florida

We often talk here about how to attract hummingbirds to your yard or garden. We also talk about planting a garden to attract hummingbirds. But that can take time.

If you are moving, why not look for a place that already has an established hummingbird population? Then you can just move right in and immediately start enjoying the birds you love.

Sounds like a great idea, right? But tell that requirement to the average real estate agent and see what kind of looks you get from them. You need help from someone who understands that some clients have special requirements for happiness—and who will take the time to fulfill your needs.

For example, broker Susan Rindley is South Florida’s leading expert on satisfying the needs of exacting clients, people who have special requirements and will not settle for less. With offices in Fort Lauderdale and Miami, the firm specializes in Ft. Lauderdale and Miami Waterfront Real Estate, but they know all the best communities throughout South Florida.

Whether you need to relocate quickly, or you simply have little time or energy for real estate shopping, an area specialist with expertise in matching existing properties with particular clients can save you time, money and frustration, and assure that you get exactly what you want and need.

All it takes is an area expert with an intuitive understanding of client needs and wishes and a sincere willingness to make sure your needs are met, from splendidly landscaped condos to large private estates. In fact, they have been chosen by Sotheby’s to showcase the most exclusive and desirable properties.

So if you want your gorgeously landscaped garden to come with a full complement of happy hummingbirds as established residents, you can have that. And you won’t have to tramp through dozes of disappointing properties to find it.

Just ask an expert, someone who specializes in successfully meeting the unique needs of each of their clients, including hummingbird lovers.

Attracting Hummingbirds and Other Birds to Your Yard

A bird feeder or bird house is a great way to attract birds to your yard, patio or garden—and keep them coming back. Plus, bird houses and feeders can be decorative, adding style and charm to any environment.

Hummingbird Feeders

Hummingbird feeders are designed to contain “nectar,” a cooked syrup of sugar and water that helps the tiny birds sustain the energy level needed to so their aerobatic feat such as hovering in mid air.

Hummingbirds are attracted to the color red, because many of the flowers they naturally sip from are red or have red undertones to their flowers that hummingbirds can see (even if we humans cannot). Some people use clear feeders and dye the nectar red with food coloring to attract the hummingbirds. However, it is best for the birds if you use clear nectar and put it in a red feeder.

You should wash and refill hummingbird feeders at least weekly to prevent the growth of mold or bacteria and keep the hummingbirds coming back for more.

Other Bird Feeders

Many birds can be attracted by feeding them bird seed, suet, or mealy bugs. That gives us something to watch when the hummingbirds have flown away for the winter.

The feeders can be plain or decorative, depending on what you prefer. In many parts of the country it is worth investing in squirrel-proof feeders. Even if you do not mind feeding the squirrels, you may want to keep your furry pals from spilling the birdseed and making a mess on the ground below. You can buy squirrel feeders if you want to, to keep them happy, too.

Be sure to clean your bird feeders at least monthly to keep them clean, safe and attractive to birds.

Bird Houses

Bird houses are a good way to attract beneficial birds such as Purple Martins, which eat mosquitoes, and songbirds. Bird houses can also help protect certain threatened species, such as bluebirds, that have been losing their nesting areas at an alarming rate in recent decades.

Well-designed and well-placed bird houses can help protect nesting birds from predators, including squirrels, rats, snakes, and domestic pets like cats. Bird houses with entrances that are properly sized for smaller species can also exclude larger species that prey on their eggs or nestlings.

Besides being fun to watch, bird houses can also be beautiful to look at, even when the birds are not around. Designs range from tiny, natural-looking and unobtrusive to clever, stylish, artistic, humorous, large or whimsical.

For best results, though, buy from a bird house specialist so that you get the right house, designed for the birds you want to attract, preferably with instructions on the best way to position it. Different bird species have different needs and preferences.

You need to get the right kind of bird house and put it in the right type of location to attract the species or type of bird you want to attract. Otherwise they may just pass it by. Bird houses should be cleaned at least once a year.

Attracting Hummingbirds, Keeping Them Healthy and Happy

Attracting hummingbirds to your lawn, garden or patio is not too hard. Hang a red hummingbird feeder filled with sugar nectar in an open area that is easily accessible or them and safe from predators. If there are hummingbirds in your area, eventually they will find it.

Getting hummingbirds to stay around and getting migrating hummers to return year after year, however, takes a little more effort. If you want them to nest in your yard, you need suitable trees and a good population of spiders. That means you cannot spray with pesticides.

In certain parts of the country, especially in humid, forested areas near lakes and streams, spiders are considered pests. People install misting systems to keep spiders away from their houses and porches so that they will not clutter up the place with webs.

Spraying for spiders can be counterproductive for two reasons: Spiders eat flies, mosquitoes, and other flying pests, and hummingbirds eat spiders. In fact, spiders are the hummingbirds’ main food source.

So if you kill off the spider population near your house, your yard becomes less attractive to nesting hummingbirds. The spray may also be bad for the tiny birds. Do not spray for mosquitoes or wasps either.

Planting red, trumpet-shaped, nectar-bearing flowers also attracts hummingbirds. If you do that, be sure to plant them where you will be able to easily see the hummingbirds to come to drink from them. It can be a beautiful sight.

In dry areas, or during dry summers, lawn sprinklers help the flowers and provide drops of water on leaves for the hummingbirds. To save water in dry areas while maintaining lush flowers and foliage for the hummers, a drip irrigation system is efficient and economical.

So if you want crowds of hummingbirds around your feeders, and you want the chance of seeing a nest of baby hummers in your yard, be kind to spiders, plant the right flowers and plants, hang red hummingbird feeders (and keep them clean and filled with fresh nectar)—and irrigate for lush vegetation.

Then just sit back and watch the show.

As Hummingbirds Fly South, Getting Ready for Winter

Hummingbirds are migrating south for the winter. It’s time to prepare for cold weather and tidy things up for next spring.

Take down your hummingbird feeders and wash them in mild soap and hot (not boiling) water. You do want the feeders to be very clean so that they do not attract bugs while in storage and so that they do not grow virus, fungus or bacteria.

Use only a touch of a mild dish liquid like Ivory, and rinse repeatedly. Then rinse again.

Harsh detergents may not damage the feeders, but some detergents are hard to completely rinse off, and any residue could cause problems for hummingbirds. It’s better to be safe than sorry.

To prevent mold and mildew, let feeders completely dry before storing them for next year.

In the northern United States and Canada it’s getting cold. In most parts of Canada it’s already time for snow and time to be thinking of snow blowers and such. Winter has its own kind of beauty, but it certainly can be a lot of work, with snow tires and chains, storm windows, slush, and icy sidewalks to deal with.

But once you have finished winter preparations, it’s a good time to curl up with hummingbird books and videos, not only for their beauty but as part of getting ready for next hummingbird season—or just to dream of visiting the most exotic hummingbird species in their native habitats. South American jungles can sound pretty inviting when it’s snowing outside.