Hummer action here continues to be very low. I am only seeing one hummer visit a couple times in the morning and a couple times in the evening. Last year my monarda first bloomed on June 20th and it was used extensively by multiple hummers. This year the monarda is peaking now, but it is barely getting used. Sitting at the window looking for hummer action is getting pretty boring. This May was a big improvement from last year, but last June was better. I sure hope July picks up quite a bit.
Same here. My Monarda is just coming into bloom. My backyard doesn't have a lot blooming but the front is loaded with blooms and We haven't seen the first sign of a hummer in the front at flowers or feeders.
USDA hardiness zone 6a
Heat zone 4
Sunset zone 39
this is just like last year. I didn't see a male though last year until we got back from Myrtle Beach the first week of July I think it was. This year I do know that there is a male in the area as I did see one earlier this year. I guess he didn't want to wait for my plants to grow and bloom
USDA hardiness zone 6a
Heat zone 4
Sunset zone 39
This message has been edited by Pennytoo on Jun 19, 2012 9:26 PM
It's always low here even in the Fall when they migrate south to my area. I rarely if ever see more than one at a feeder at a time. I see the female every other day or so now. No clue if it is the same bird or not. I just know it is a Ruby-throated female and she prefers the feeder over all the blooms... and I think of the money I could have saved by just using feeders! Ha!
I went out during the last 20 minutes of daylight and counted 11 birds taking their last long drink of the day at the three feeders within view. There was one other feeder that is closely guarded by a dominate male that I could not see. This is much more than I have ever had at this time of the year. I wonder what July will bring?
This week we have struggled to have one or two hummer sightings a day. Combined with all the scorching hot weather, no rain for weeks, and the extreme critter damage, it is getting a little discouraging and exhausting. Still no hummers today.
Kathi and Michael Rock
I have observed exactly 1 hummer, an adult male, in the last month at my home. This is typical for late May -> June at my place, a few miles from potential nesting areas. In some years, I will begin seeing 1 or 2 sporadically in late June, but most times, I won't be seeing action until after 4th July.
These early birds will seldom use feeders, relying mostly on flowers. Because they mostly use flowers, they are not catchable, so I cannot determine if they are southbound migrants or just post-breeding dispersers. There is little in the literature about whether or not Ruby-throateds actually go through a period of dispersing after breeding or fledging. By August, Ruby-throateds are definitely moving south, but the main push occurs in September.
My best guess is that:
-> if you have a lot of activity in June, Ruby-throateds are breeding very nearby
-> if you see just occasional visitors [once per day or less] in June, Ruby-throateds may be nesting in your general area but in small numbers or their nesting is more distant [probably more than a mile away]
-> if you almost never see visitors in June, nesting areas are more distant than a mile or two. In these cases, there is not much you can do to attract Ruby-throateds. I am not sure what [if anything] anyone can do to create nesting habitat for them, but I am pretty sure it won't happen on a single 100 foot x 100 foot suburban lot without surrounding habitat. Be advised that just because the area may look suitable to human eyes, it may not look that way to hummer eyes.
I have only seen one female at home in the past 3 weeks and just once. Males are less than daily and there may be just one and mostly I see him at the Coral Bell patch. At the park there are more birds, several males and females, at least I think so although I am rarely seeing any chases. Since it is Japanese Honeysuckle bloom time the birds don't really need my home garden. I suspect the birds are a bit more needy at the park. There the deer have done a really good job on the honeysuckle so the gardens are more important.
Numbers are low here, too. The sugar water level in my feeders is barely going down. We're having a very bad drought here so I would assume the birds would be using the feeders more because of a lack of nectar in flowers. I have shrubs and perennials dying from the drought. Last year was my best year ever for hummingbirds and this year is my worst in many years.
A few days ago I had one hummer. Suddenly, three males have shown up. Two of them are adults and one of them may be the same partial-gorget pre-adult male that has dropped by a few times since mid May. Tonight all four hummers were here and I finally got to see a bit of competition for the monarda.
Indy Steve (Login Stevenindy) Hummingbird lover 2007
Re: Hummer activity very low
June 25 2012, 11:12 PM
The last few nights I have had decent hummer action 4or 5 mature males and a couple females. Im not really sure how that compares to last season which was my best hummer season ever. It will be interesting to see how july shapes up.
Today Im noticing quite an upswing in hummer activity but its all at the feeders every 5min or less especially the rear feeder pp209. That feeder is in shade till 2pm. Im not thinking its immatures just yet since it is the feeders. They even seem to fly around me while Im watering to get to the feeders.
July has come early for me this year. I have lots of hummers feeding from and exploring most of the flowers. Chases are going on all over the place. I took a close look at the dark breasted female at the feeder outside my window this morning and it appears to be an immature male with heavy stippling of the throat. Sugar water levels are dropping rapidly at the feeders. I counted 19 bird visits at the feeders after sunset last evening. There has to be more than a dozen hummers at least. I am very lucky this year. I hope this continues.
Last year I had many hummers from late April (especially on the columbine Aquilegia canadensis, as well as on the feeders) and then solidly till September on the many hummer flowers (Salvia, Agastache, Monarda, honeysuckle, shrimp plant Justicia, etc.) in my garden and the 4 feeders. This year I did not see a single one on the flowers till yesterday, when I saw one on the Salvia B & B. The feeders get occasional use by what seems to be one male. I splurged last year on several Sinningias, now big and blooming, and have not seen one used at all. Same for the Fuchsia Gartenmeisters. I splurged again this year on Cestrum and Jatropha large blooming plants, and again nothing. I have had a breeding pair of hummers in my large partly wooded pond-side yard for 5-6 years, and last year they were chasing away interlopers by the dozen. Kind of frustrating - I miss all the activity!
I had lots of crows the last two weeks. One of them could not fly and was hanging around all the time.
Maybe that explained why my hummers were gone.
Today, I have not heard the crows yet. And I saw 2 hummers at my feeders, a male and a female.
I don't get a lot of hummers here, 3 at a time would be excellent!