Monday, March 31, 2014

Mix Up the Nectar

Seems I took a longer break than I expected.  After our guests left both my husband and I got a dreadful GI virus.  The Norovirus that sometimes runs rampant through cruise ships.  Fortunately it is short-lived but such a nightmare.  When we recovered, I scrubbed everything thoroughly with bleach.

This is the last day of March and here in North Carolina we are getting ready to greet our smallest migrating birds, many of whom will spend the summer here with us.

 This little one is sitting on a hummingbird that tops the feeder.

 She looks at me as if declaring, "This is MY space, lady."

This is the migration map for today
(click to enlarge)

Each year the migration of the Ruby-throated Hummingbird is posted on the Web.  It is a device for self-reporting sightings of the birds and is typically very reliable.  You can find the map HERE

The map always bothers us a bit.  We prepare and hang the nectar and then wait and wait.  Hummingbirds are reported to our east and to our west.  To our south and to our north and yet we do not see them.  Perhaps it's because we live so near the Southern Blue Ridge Escarpment that dramatically rises above the piedmont areas.  Whatever the reason, the hummingbirds will come and we will welcome them for the summer.

I'm not certain why there are no migration maps for other hummingbirds.  Perhaps the Ruby-throated Hummingbird pathways are more predictable.


Carolina Linthead said...

Cute! Yes, Mary from Charlotte posted on FB that she saw a ruby-throat...they're coming, whether the weather feels like spring or not :-)

Anonymous said...

Sorry to hear about your bout with norovirus, but glad to know you and your husband have recovered.

We have two male Anna Hummingbirds that stay year round and keep all the migrators away. It's sad to watch them chase the Rufus away. They are all pretty scrappy little things, but a pleasure to watch.

Ms. A said...

My hubby's step MIL was on one of those cruise ships that was hit with Norovirus.

I never see hummingbirds around my house, but I don't put out hummingbird feeders. My MIL does and she see them occasionally. Love your photos!

Unknown said...

I wish we got something more exciting than pigeons or the occasional robin. Seriously. Good photos BTW.

Arkansas Patti said...

Wow, that had to be awful. So glad you are better.
Is it that time all ready? Goodness, time to stock up on sugar.

~Kim at Golden Pines~ said...

We've had patients and a couple of people that I work with that have had this same thing--It really does pack a punch, no question!! Glad you're feeling better!!

THANKS for the map, I had no idea they tracked them. I'd seen one for the Monarch butterflies, so why not hummingbirds too.

KB said...

I've been hearing about an awful GI bug that's all over the place. I'm so sorry you had to endure it.

After you told us about the map for your hummers, I searched and searched (last year) for maps for the two species that spend the summer here, and I couldn't find any. I think that the routes are very predictable for other species but no one has organized the mapping.

I can't wait for your hummers to arrive!

Cheryl said...

I do hope you are both full recovered, a very nasty virus.

Hummingbirds are so beautiful. I saw them in Kansas City when I visited a fellow blogger and also in South Africa. They took my breath away. It must be an endless joy to have them with you for the summer.

Appalachian Lady said...

I always seem to see my first hummingbird when the columbine blooms. I love the shots of your hummingbird.

Thanks so much for the link to that map--it is helpful.

Lise said...

Thanks for the map, I wasn't aware of it. I'm looking forward to the return of the ruby-throated hummingbirds. Last year we didn't have as many as in the previous years, but we do enjoy watching them. They usually arrive in our area in the spring. I'll have to put the food out when I return to the cabin!

NCmountainwoman said...

Thanks for your comments, everyone.

Yes, the virus is awful. My husband calls me a germophobe because I keep alcohol wash in my car and use it the minute I exit the grocery store. Alas, alcohol does not kill the Norovirus. So I come straight in to the house and wash with soap and water. (I'm convinced I picked up the virus at the grocery store since it is rampant in the community.)

Robin - I've never seen an Anna but we occasionally get a wandering Rufous even here.

Dina - Thanks for dropping by.

Busy Bee Suz said...

So sorry you've both been ill. Two of my people had bad colds last week and today I'm feeling it creeping in too. Nothing like your virus though; yuck.
I'm going to check out the map as I LOVE hummingbirds. I've only seen 2 here at our house and that was last year.

The Bug said...

Mike & I had a mild-ish version of the virus a couple of weeks ago - & even that left me wiped out for days.

We have a while to wait before we get to see any hummers - so I'll just enjoy yours until then!