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Rufous Hummingbird in CT

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Old Saturday 13th August 2011, 17:27   #1
MikeyZ
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Rufous Hummingbird in CT

Believe it or not, I just saw a Rufous Hummingbird in my yard in Connecticut. Normally all we have are the Ruby-Throated, but man was I amazed to see an orange hummingbird !

Wish I snapped a picture, but of course, those random outings to the yards are well, random !
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Old Saturday 13th August 2011, 17:47   #2
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Yes, although rare, they have been known to visit the east coast. My sister in law had one for about a week in August in NJ a few years back. I remember one about 10 yrs or so ago that visited a South Jersey home and stayed the whole winter. The people called birding groups to confirm that it was a Rufous and yes it sure was. They had a heat lamp on all winter to keep the feeder from freezing.
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Old Saturday 13th August 2011, 17:53   #3
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They are very beautiful and it was awesome to see one.

Wow, a hummingbird during the winter ? That's really cool.
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Old Friday 19th August 2011, 16:25   #4
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I have three nesting pairs in our backyard and they are feisty. Their babies are old enough to using the feeder and their parents allowed it for about a week. Now they chase them off. :p

I hope you get a picture.
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Old Saturday 20th August 2011, 02:15   #5
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They are currently breeding/nesting in New Mexico? All info I have read says their breeding grounds are the northwest and up into Alaska. Do you have pictures of their nests by any chance? I have about 40 male and female rufous right now. They will hang for 2-3 weeks and then start heading back to Mexico.
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Old Sunday 28th August 2011, 22:16   #6
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They are currently breeding/nesting in New Mexico? All info I have read says their breeding grounds are the northwest and up into Alaska. Do you have pictures of their nests by any chance? I have about 40 male and female rufous right now. They will hang for 2-3 weeks and then start heading back to Mexico.
They've been here since April. The nests are in a bunch of elm trees and I can't get in there to get a pic. I keep trying to take pictures of the juveniles and adults but they are more skittish than the Broad-Tails. I'm also trying to get a picture of our Black-Chins. There are two pairs. We are at 5300 Ft. and only 70 miles from the Colorado Mountains near Durango. We get a lot of Rufous nesting pairs in this area.
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Old Tuesday 30th August 2011, 02:24   #7
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The Rufous's unique combination of long migration and short nesting season makes it seem as though they nest well south of their actual breeding range. Here in southeastern Arizona, there's only six to seven weeks between the last northbound Rufous (early May) and the earliest southbound birds (late June). The further north you go, the smaller the "gap" would be. They're usually common in the southern Rockies by late July, when the similar-looking female Broad-taileds are still trying to nest.

Based on banding studies, the average Rufous spends less than a week at any one stopover site, so there's a lot of turnover through the migration season!
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Old Tuesday 30th August 2011, 04:50   #8
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The Rufous's unique combination of long migration and short nesting season makes it seem as though they nest well south of their actual breeding range. Here in southeastern Arizona, there's only six to seven weeks between the last northbound Rufous (early May) and the earliest southbound birds (late June). The further north you go, the smaller the "gap" would be. They're usually common in the southern Rockies by late July, when the similar-looking female Broad-taileds are still trying to nest.

Based on banding studies, the average Rufous spends less than a week at any one stopover site, so there's a lot of turnover through the migration season!
I watched them build their nests. It was hard to get to but I could see them carrying spider webs and other things. That was in early April. They are nesting. Maybe they're lost or something but they definitely have nests.
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Old Tuesday 30th August 2011, 09:36   #9
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Oddly, we are getting a few here in north Alabama every winter now on the hilltops.
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Old Tuesday 30th August 2011, 19:15   #10
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I watched them build their nests. It was hard to get to but I could see them carrying spider webs and other things. That was in early April. They are nesting. Maybe they're lost or something but they definitely have nests.
Since female Rufous and Broad-tailed are very similar, and the more readily distinguishable males take no part in nesting, rigorous, detailed documentation will be required to verify a 600-mile southward extension in the species' breeding range.
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Old Wednesday 31st August 2011, 19:22   #11
Totah Sam
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Since female Rufous and Broad-tailed are very similar, and the more readily distinguishable males take no part in nesting, rigorous, detailed documentation will be required to verify a 600-mile southward extension in the species' breeding range.
that must be why the males were watching over the females during the building and nesting process. They've commandeered one of the feeders and won't allow any other species to use it. I'm sorry you don't believe me. But, they're not supposed to be in the southeast either... summer or winter.

I don't need to document anything. I know what they were doing and I enjoyed every minute of it. Have a nice day. :)
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Old Thursday 1st September 2011, 05:50   #12
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But, they're not supposed to be in the southeast either... summer or winter.
Extraordinary claims require extraordinary evidence. Nobody believed the folks in the Southeast, either, until they went to the trouble of documenting their wintering hummingbirds through photographs and banding. In fact, they're now some of the best documented hummingbirds in the world.

Too bad you're not the documenting type - evidence of Rufous nesting in New Mexico would really set the ornithological world on its ear.
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Old Friday 2nd September 2011, 19:34   #13
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I contacted several of my birding friends located in your area. They all are unaware and have never heard of nesting Rufous in your/their area. Their birding club would like very much to see and document this. Would you be willing to have them come out to your property?
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