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Old Sunday 21st March 2004, 15:31   #1
jackdins
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Question Is there a yellow-breasted hummingbird

On March 18 and 19 multiple up-close sightings
were made by four sober people of a yellow-breasted
hummingbird, somewhat larger than our ruby-throated
variety. I have not been able to find anything even
remotely close in my books.

He visited the same feeder several times both days,
taking long drinks. The color was bright yellow but
my wife noted that it looked a little orange to her when
he turned sideways in the bright sunlight, but agrees it
was a bright yellow in direct sun.

I now have a camera ready but he did not show up yesterday
nor so far today, March 21.

Location: Pensacola, Florida

Any ideas???
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Old Sunday 21st March 2004, 15:37   #2
Jane Turner
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I seem to recall female Broad-tailed-and presumably related hummers have quite an orangey cast to their underparts, but I wouldn't describe them as "bright yellow".

http://www.birdforum.net/pp_gallery/...DSC_2451FF.jpg

Last edited by Jane Turner : Sunday 21st March 2004 at 15:39.
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Old Sunday 21st March 2004, 15:52   #3
Michael Frankis
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Welcome to BirdForum!

Any hummer can get bright yellow on its breast if it visits flowers that get deposit pollen on it while feeding. I believe plants like Hibiscus are 'designed' to do this - long stamens that brush the hummer while it probes for nectar, then when it visits the next flower, some of the pollen rubs back off onto the (slightly sticky) stigma, to fertilise the seeds.

Obviously if it was clearly larger than Ruby-throat, it will be a different species though.

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Old Sunday 21st March 2004, 16:00   #4
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How about a Rufous Hummingbird?
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Old Sunday 21st March 2004, 16:04   #5
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Male rufous hummingbird, which is being seen with more regularity in Florida, has a bright gorget that can be quite yellow (gold, really) and orange (and also green and even sometimes raspberry) depending on the angle of light hitting it. He can also be quite orangey on the belly and breast. But Michael's closer to the mark about how the pollen can really discolor the birds.

If I can coax my slide scanner into working this morning, I'll upload a shot of a rufous male, and also of a broad-tailed female with pollen on her forehead. The latter made me do a double-take when I first saw her -- I mean, what hummer has a yellow face like that?! :-)
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Old Sunday 21st March 2004, 16:34   #6
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Sorry for the poor scan quality. These are severely cropped slides but they'll give you an idea...
Attached Thumbnails
Click image for larger version

Name:	BTHU - female pollen.jpg
Views:	98
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ID:	6455  Click image for larger version

Name:	Rufous male 1.jpg
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Old Sunday 21st March 2004, 17:07   #7
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Never heard of one with a truly yellow breast. Even hypothesizing the deposit of yellow pollen, it wouldn't deposit on the breast as hummers don't normally have contact with the flowers except through the bill and head. I can only think of some screwy plumage variation of a known hummer.

Here's another link to see a photo (on the head) of the pollen deposit occurring during feeding.

http://www.birdforum.net/showthread.php?t=13354
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Old Sunday 21st March 2004, 17:53   #8
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well there is xantu's with buffy yellow breast but in florida - prepare to be famous if that's what it is
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Old Sunday 21st March 2004, 17:55   #9
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oops xantus's - should check my typing
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Old Sunday 21st March 2004, 18:04   #10
Michael Frankis
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Whether they get pollen on their breast or not will depend more on the structures of the flower, than the behaviour of the hummer - if the flower has very long stamens, it could happen. Something like e.g. this Epiphyllum:
http://www.mdougherty.com/100-THEPHO...lht-jpeg60.jpg
Or this one:
http://images1.fotki.com/v4/photos/2...phyllum-vi.jpg
(flowers about 12-15cm/5-6" across)

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Old Sunday 21st March 2004, 18:08   #11
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Or a Hibiscus like this:
http://www.cmdl.noaa.gov/star/sites/hibiscus.jpg

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Old Sunday 21st March 2004, 18:16   #12
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Location: Pensacola, Florida

Any ideas???

Jack, Lanny Chambers has an excellent site relating to hummingbirds.

http://www.hummingbirds.net/

You will get info in there relating to the individual sightings in each State.

Regards

Malky @ Westhill
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Old Sunday 21st March 2004, 19:58   #13
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Michael Frankis
Or a Hibiscus like this:
http://www.cmdl.noaa.gov/star/sites/hibiscus.jpg

Michael
OK, OK. Should have bit my lip! You have convinced me.

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Old Sunday 21st March 2004, 21:36   #14
jackdins
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Lightbulb

I believe that Rufous with the pollen is what we
saw. Thank you all so much, I don't believe I've
ever had better response to a forum question. The
first answer came in just minutes after I posted
the question! This must be a popular spot for
bird watchers.

Jack from Pensacola
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Old Monday 22nd March 2004, 00:47   #15
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jackdins
I believe that Rufous with the pollen is what we
saw. Thank you all so much, I don't believe I've
ever had better response to a forum question. The
first answer came in just minutes after I posted
the question! This must be a popular spot for
bird watchers.

Jack from Pensacola
You,re right there,Jack..it is!
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