Saturday, May 21, 2011

Desert Hummingbirds

We're out in 29 again this weekend.  Weather is about perfect... light wind, high about 90.  First thing I did early today (even before my coffee!) was go outside to water a couple plants and I see something moving fast out of the corner of my eye and running off into the distance.  Too big for jackrabbits.  Less than a minute later, I see a coyote in full pursuit of something (not sure what).  He was so involved in chasing his prey that he nearly ran me over! He stopped for a second, checked me out, then shot off. Not sure if he ever caught whatever it was he was chasing, but it was fun to see close up like that.

Next I turned on the hose, I sprayed a light stream of water hitting a cactus, and a humming bird came right up to within inches of the water spray.  It clearly was interested and intrigued with the water, and hovered for a long time trying to decide whether or not to get a drink.  I got my camera, but couldn't figure out how to hold the hose, spray water, and take a pic at the same time!  I decided to turn on the ground bubblers we use to water the trees and sit and wait to see if any hummers showed up.  Well, didn't have to wait long at all! They quickly started drinking the water and taking bird baths in the wet sand. Very fun to watch!

Taking a bath!
 I don't know what species they are.  Looking on the internet, it looks like "Anna's Hummingbird" is the most common in S. CA.  But the males have a red head, and I didn't see any with this coloration, so cross Anna's off the list.  "Costa's Hummingbird" is the most common in the CA deserts, so that's where I'm placing my bet.  However, based on the internet pics, I'm not so sure.  I'll keep looking and see if I can figure it out.

This has nothing to do with Hummingbirds, but couldn't resist posting a pic of my better half taking a break under the desert willow from her gardening.  Nice flowering prickly pear in the foreground.

We're heading off to explore an area of Wonder Valley we've never been to before (Ironage Road), so should have another post soon!


  1. Oh, how interesting about the hummingbirds! I bought some flowers to plant from Lowe's and a hummingbird was busy checking them out this afternoon! And, I had a coyote cross right in front of me (I believe it was after ducks at the pond where I walk)...I heard rustle, rustle, rustle, and there he was! Nice, big one! :-)

  2. Great pictures....nice pic of the "dutch girl"...perfect weather. Looks like a great beginning for summer.