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How do hummingbirds remember which flowers they visited?

Posted by Douglas Everett on

A hummingbird's hippocampus, which is responsible for memory and learning, is up to five times bigger than the hippocampus of other birds, according to a study from The Royal Society. The result is that the birds remember which flowers they've visited, their locations and when they'll have nectar again. Given that they can visit a thousand or more flowers a day and can fly 500 miles before resting, pretty amazing.

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Please keep your feeders clean

Posted by Douglas Everett on

PLEASE CLEAN YOUR HUMMINGBIRD FEEDERS WELL Humans who feed hummingbirds can be one of the first steps where pathogen transmission can be decreased by instituting proper preventive measures such as diligent hummingbird feeder cleaning. Soaking and scrubbing with a 50/50 vinegar/ water ratio can eliminate molds and bacteria. And using a small brush on the food ports will keep their little bills fresh and clean. Detergents and soaps are not suggested at they leave a residue.  First report of laboratory-diagnosedavian poxvirus infection in a hummingbird http://www.jwildlifedis.org/doi/full/10.7589/2012-09-230?code=wdas-site  CHARACTERIZATION OF AVIAN POXVIRUS IN ANNA'S HUMMINGBIRD (CALYPTE ANNA) IN CALIFORNIA, USA.  Journal of...

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Feeding Jelly to Birds

Posted by Douglas Everett on

JELLY I am not an enthusiast of feeding jelly to birds---it attracts bees, especially the Africanized type and Bald-faced hornets. And the bird droppings are very staining. In parallel, Laura Erickson reports that "Kent Mahaffey, who was manager of the San Diego Wild Animal Park's famous free-flight Bird Show for more than two decades. Kent had primary care responsibility for hundreds of birds from many families. He said he would never allow any birds under his care to have jelly. He added the following: In general, any food that exceeds the balance of sucrose in a bird's natural diet is suspect. Natural...

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Microbial Communities in Hummingbird Feeders Are Distinct from Floral Nectar and Influenced by Bird Visitation

Posted by Douglas Everett on

A big title for a research paper but essentially it is " Most microbes in hummingbird feeders do not pose health hazard"https://phys.org/news/2019-03-microbes- ... ealth.htmlIt basically says: "They also found that birds, feeder sugar-water, and flowers hosted distinct bacterial and fungal communities" and "However, a tiny fraction of those microbes has been associated with disease, so we encourage everyone who provides feeders for hummingbirds to clean their feeders on a regular basis and to avoid cleaning feeders in areas where human food is prepared."

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2019 Hummingbird Society Festival

Posted by Douglas Everett on

THE MOST BEAUTIFUL PLACE IN AMERICA TO SEE HUMMINGBIRDS! The 2019 Sedona Hummingbird Festival will be held August 2-3-4, 2019, in scenic Sedona, Arizona.  Information on activities and presenters will be posted in January, possibly in December. Ticket sales begin at noon on April 1, 2019. Mark your calendars!!  In recent years the Festival has drawn attendees from as many as 39 states and 9 countries! Come see why it is so popular. http://www.hummingbirdsociety.org/index.php

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