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Saturday, Mar. 8, 2014
Goodbye, hummers!Posted Monday, October 15, 2012, at 7:25 AM
It's time for us to say so long to the hummers. The major season is over, although you will see a few for the next 3-4 weeks. The hummers that come here to breed have already left, so what you will see now are the birds migrating from further north.
The birds are headed back to Central America, where they will enjoy a winter that will be far better than ours! From here the route is approximately 500 miles long and involves crossing the Gulf of Mexico. Since they fly almost non-stop, prior to leaving they have increased their body mass by almost 100%.
Be sure to bring your feeders in before cold temperatures can potentially cause breakage. CLEAN those feeders well - get rid of all traces of mold. Use a tablespoon of bleach mixed with water to help with cleaning.
Don't forget - your feeder accessibility does not affect hummingbird migration.
Did you know - the 'shimmery' colors of their feathers is caused by a special row of cells along the feathers which catch sunlight, much like a prism? It is similar to the way an oil sheen works.
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Vicky Carder is a Shelbyville native. In 1991 she founded Walden's Puddle Wildlife Rehabilitation Center in Nashville. There she served as Executive Director for more than 12 years. The Center is the largest wildlife hospital in Middle Tennessee. She has published in wildlife national and international journals. Now she wants to share her knowledge of native wildlife and some of the experiences she had while working with wildlife.