This post contains 5 photos. This is the female Rufous Hummingbird who ruled the backyard roost for two straight weeks, sipping from the kniphofia. Unlike the males (who seem to prefer sugar water), female hummers seem to be less fastidious and will drink both sugar water and flower nectar (note: the males will sip from flowers, often as “a show of force/ownership”). This gives me more photo opportunities as well! Photographed on May 25.
Tiny feet on twining vines: no Rufous hummingbird has “owned the backyard” as long she (she still comes back every few days)–even chasing off the resident adult male Anna’s hummingbird on her first challenge! I am about 5 feet away from her, and she really doesn’t give two hoots about me being so close. Photographed on the evening of May 27.
The previous shots were taken with my 500mm telephoto lens, but my first encounters with this little red-and-green lady were taken with my 100mm macro prime lens (yes, she was that unconcerned with me being so close to her and the fragrant honeysuckle!) She was also more than a little pushy with the other backyard regulars, making the Black-Capped Chickadees, Downy Woodpecker, and Northwestern Crows more than a little uncomfortable in her presence! Rufous hummingbirds may be small (they are even smaller than the Anna’s), but their feistiness more than makes up for it! We saw plenty of proof that size doesn’t mean a thing! Photographed on May 23.
Also photographed on May 23. On her first day in the backyard, this female Rufous hummingbird made the acquaintance of virtually every flowering plant–kale, columbine, blueberry, kniphofia, and many more–she even sampled these raspberry flowers from a nearby branch. I’m shooting downwards at her from the second floor sunroom.