Hummingbirds are magical creatures. When you've spent as much of your time around these wonderful birds as I have, it's easy to understand why. My website HogbatsPhotography.com gets many hits from around the world from countries where there are no hummingbirds. Every month I get hits from India.
Lately, the hits come from places I can't even pronounce, let alone know where these countries are. I do know that hummingbirds touch peoples hearts; as they do mine every summer here in the Wind River Canyon, in the state of Wyoming.
Hummingbirds nest and breed as far north as Alaska, and as far south as Tierra del Fugeo! And they migrate to warmer climates by themselves----unlike the old nutcase that told me, "Oh no, they ride on the backs of geese." Like the aggressive goose would allow such a thing....
There are 135 species native to Columbia and 163 native to Ecuador! I have photographed four species during the summers here in the Wind River Canyon. As a bird species they are the only one that can hover for an extended period of time. In a laboratory, a hummingbird was enticed to hover for 50 minutes! This can never happen in the real world; they're too busy.
The most common hummingbird species here in Wyoming is the aggressive rufous, which has a wing-beat between 60 to 65 bps (beats per second). By comparison the adorable mountain chickadee we have around here can do 25 bps at a full gallop! Hummingbirds have the fastest metabolic rate of any animal, which is why the nectar feeders help them immensely and provide a way of experiencing these magical birds up close and personal. And lets face facts here, what is more wonderfully adorable than a baby anything?
This first image is a baby rufous hummer born right here in the canyon. All of my hummingbird photographs are imaged here in the Wind River Canyon. He's coming in for a landing. All three included pictures were photographed at a mind-boggling 1/4000th of a second; a speed my grandfather couldn't have imagined. I just love the eye peeking over his wing. All of these pictures were taken from my favorite "high-hide" on the west side of my cabin here in the Wind River Canyon. The next image is an acrobatic pose that is difficult to photograph and is unusual. Take note of the eagle's talons.
This third baby hummingbird image is what I like to call a hummingbird portrait, albeit in-flight, which is just as hard to photograph as you'd think it would be. Trying to do this every summer is a challenge in and of itself. I hope my love of baby hummingbirds has rubbed off on some of you. They truly are one of the most magical of creatures on Earth, and they are born right here in the Wind River Canyon. There are so many baby hummers around, even now, that I don't know if any of the three are the same or even related to one another.
And speaking of baby birds, I am up to my ears in wild turkey babies. They are cute....in a sort of an ugly kind of way; like one of those dogs. I was so ugly that the doctor slapped my father!
I hope this Wind River Canyon Blog made you think; and laugh a little, too.
I am Michael John Balog and I am lucky enough to live in the magical Wind River Canyon. Visit safely my website www.HogbatsPhotography.com to see birds, hummers and animals that I can guarantee you've never seen in Wyoming.
Oh, and all rights are reserved. Thank you for your precious time that you have given me.