Tuesday Photo Challenge – Colorful Hummingbird

The ruby-throated baby hummingbird in my garden is doing well. He prefers nectar from lavender flowers, but there are not enough flowers to give him the amount of nectar he needs. Mama and Papa feed exclusively from my feeders.

There is a small potted ficus tree in front of the kitchen window underneath the hummingbird feeder. The lavender bush is about five feet from the ficus tree. Baby Hummi flew to the lavender flowers to get nectar. After feeding, he flies to the ficus tree and perches on his favorite spot of the branch until the next feeding. Papa flies around and swoops him up so he gets to fly one round of the palm trees. He quickly comes back to the ficus tree and perches on his spot.

Two days ago, he tried the sugar water from the feeder and liked it. He goes back and forth between the lavender flowers and the feeder. Papa comes by every twenty minutes to take him on flying lessons.

There was a baby hummingbird last year did the same thing. He perched on the ficus branch most of the time and the parent came by to take him flying. When the parents went south for the winter, the baby stayed behind to feed on my feeder throughout the winter.

I was curious about the migration of the hummingbird. I did a research this morning and found out that I will have the baby stay with us for the winter. The website also describes the colors of the birds.

Hummingbird 1

Hummingbird 2

Hummingbird 3

Hummingbird 4

Hummingbird 5

The Colorful Hummingbird

The ruby-throated hummingbird (Archilochus colubris) is a species of hummingbird that generally spends the winter in Central America, Mexico, and Florida, and migrates to North America for the summer to breed. It is by far the most common hummingbird seen in North America.

The adult male has a throat patch of iridescent ruby red bordered narrowly with velvety black on the upper margin and a forked black tail with a faint violet sheen. The red iridescence is highly directional and appears dull black from many angles. The female has a notched tail with outer feathers banded in green, black, and white and a white throat that may be plain or lightly marked with dusky streaks or stipples.

During migration southward in autumn along the northern coast of the Gulf of Mexico, some birds embark on a nonstop 900-mile journey. Some older male and female birds were better prepared for long-distance flight than first-year birds by having higher body weights and larger fuel loads.

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Ruby-throated_hummingbird

Frank’s Dutch Goes the Photo: Tuesday Photo Challenge – Colorful Hummingbird

My First Baby Hummingbird

Six days ago, I suddenly discovered a tiny hummingbird nest on an orange tree branch. Probably it had been there for three weeks. I was surprised that my husband didn’t accidentally knock it off when he picked oranges.

Hummingbird baby 1

At first, I thought it was dust caught in the cobweb. I almost wanted to squirt it with a hose. I took another look, it looked like a neatly squeezed together cheese ball. Then I saw a pointed beak sticking out from the nest. I quickly grabbed my camera, climbed the ladder my husband put again the tree. Surely it was a teeny-weeny hummingbird. It was so still that it looked dead and abandoned. I poked the beak, he jumped out of the nest and fell on the grass. It made me feel horrified. I quickly picked him up and put him back to the nest. By that time, the mama bird was flapping her wings around me.

For five day, my first thing in the morning was to see the baby hummingbird. He grew, and his body came up higher and higher in the nest. Both mama and papa checked their baby frequently. On the fifth day, he wiggled and wiggled, then flew out of the nest. He flew to one tree branch, clung on to it as he practiced flapping the wings. Then flew to another branch and flapped. After five minutes, he flew to the other side of a row of Cypress trees.

Hummingbird baby 2

Hummingbird baby 3

I worried that he didn’t know where to find nectar or the bird feeders. After a couple hours, the mama bird found him and brought him to the bird feeder.

This is the first baby hummingbird in my garden. I researched on the growth of hummingbird babies. One site indicates that it takes 16 to 18 days to incubate for the eggs to hatch. A YouTube video shows from eggs to hatching, to babies flying away, takes 26 days. I wish I could have watched the process from the egg. It’s as thrilling to watch his growth even for a few days.

Hummingbird baby 4

Tuesday Photo Challenge – Denali National Park, Alaska

We arrived Anchorage on May 18, 2018. The sunrise is 5:00 a.m. and sunset is 11:00 p.m. When we landed at 9:30 p.m. it was still bright but dreary because it had been raining. I was so worried about the tour to Denali. Denali is at 20,320 feet elevation, the tallest peak in North America. I was looking forward to having a glimpse of the snowy mountain range. The gloomy weather didn’t give me too much hope.

When I woke up on the day of the tour, second day of the trip, the rain stopped, and the sky was clear. By the time the tour coach picked up the passengers, I saw the blue sky. We had an enjoyable trip seeing the clear snowy mountains. As soon as we entered Denali National Park, the tour guide and driver could make frequent stops for us to take photos when we spotted wildlife. I took photos of Willow Ptarmigans, Snowshoe Hares, and the moose at different spots.

The snow was bright and shiny reflecting the bright sun. The tour guide indicated that Global warming is felt in Alaska to Arctic and Antarctica more so than other parts of the world. We witnessed the melting of the snow cutting through and changing the landscape. The global warming concern is real to me after this trip.

We returned to Anchorage on May 20 by the railroad train. It was cloudy again. The train passed by Hurricane Gorge. It was named as such because the wind could go 150 miles per hour. I included a photo of the Gorge.

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Frank’s Dutch Goes the Photo: Tuesday Photo Challenge – Denali National Park, Alaska

Weekly Photo Challenge – Sunrise/Sunset

I don’t get up early enough to take many sunrise photos. I did manage to take some last year on Easter Sunday. Mercy and Will hiked to the top of Mt. Adams in Oregon to watch the sunrise. The first photo is credited to Mercy.

I love taking sunset photos. When I travel during sunrise or sunset hours, I make sure to have seats where I could capture the scenes. Sunset is beautiful everywhere, such as in the cities of my neighborhood, which is also fascinating.

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Sunrise on top of Mt Adams, Oregon
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Sunrise on Easter Sunday, Fullerton, California
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Sunset view from airplane, west coast, USA
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Sunset in La Habra, California

Weekly Photo Challenge: Rise/Set

Carrot Ranch: Flash Fiction Challenge – Raven

At Carrot Ranch, the March 1 Flash Fiction Challenge is Rave. The challenge is to write a flash fiction in 99 words, no more, no less.

Raven’s Eyes

“Do you have any water left, Dave?”

“I still have some. Take a sip. Your lips are badly chapped, Ben.”

“We have been lost in unpaved hiking trail for five days.”

“We only have water enough for two more days! I hope we could locate water soon!”

“Look, Dave! A raven is circling in the air and ready to dive down.”

“It spotted a dead deer and wanted its share. I think.”

“And the deer was drinking water!?”

“That may be our hope for water, Ben.”

“We could reach down by nightfall.”

“I hope this raven saves our lives.”

~

Charli Mills: Carrot Ranch – March 1 Flash Fiction Challenge

Colleen’s Tanka Tuesday Challenge

This week Colleen’s Weekly Tanka Tuesday Challenge is Renew and Refresh, Synonyms Only.

Tanka tuesday

 

Signs of blossom on

My orange, plum, apple trees

Soil is fertilized

Sun will revitalize and

Bring harvest in spring

Colleen’s Weekly Tanka Tuesday Challenge – Renew & Refresh, Synonymous Only

Debbie’s Fiving Friday –  Forgiving Connects

Tuesday Photo Challenge – Forces

I was a student at Seattle Pacific University, Washington in May 1980 when Mt. St. Helen had erupted. The ashes drifted over many states and could be seen from Chicago. Mercy, Will and I went to visit in September 2016 and saw a lot of plant growth. This is a great illustration of the force of destruction and the force of life.

Mt. St. Helens

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Frank’s Dutch Goes the Photo – Tuesday Photo Challenge – Forces

Debbie’s Forgiving Friday – Forgiving Connects