Sunday, November 11, 2012

Today's hummingbirds of Cerro Azul

This post is an excuse to show you the nice collection of hummingbirds that visit he feeders at Cerro Azul, a gated community in the foothills east of Panama City.  Osvaldo Quintero, Osvaldo Quintero Jr., and myself visited the Ahrens' house, invited by Leslie and Cindy Lieurance (The Petrels in Panama), where Claudia received us for a while before we headed to a nearby trail to birdwatch (that story in another post).  I will show the hummingbirds in, more or less, taxonomic order.  All the photos were taken today at the Ahrens or Lieurance feeders (except for one, you'll see).
And the taxonomic list starts with a VERY beautiful hummingbird: the White-necked Jacobin is simply spectacular... and the most common hummingbird in both houses.
The hermits are not exactly colorful hummingbirds, but impressive in their own way.  This Stripe-throated Hermit is the smallest of the hummingbirds seen today, and this one in particular preferred the semi-hidden feeder below the table!
In the other extreme, the Green Hermit was the largest hummingbird we saw... it will fly right in front of you just for curiosity!
The stars at the Ahrens' feeders were the two (probably three) Brown Violetears present since some time ago.  This species is particularly rare and erratic in Panama, so having them visiting feeders is simply good news!
In the other hand, the star at the Lieurance's feeders was the single Long-billed Starthroat that waited patiently to drink among the numerous jacobins.  The shiny red throat is hard to see, and to photograph of course.
Among the panamanians hummingbirds, the Bronze-tailed Plumeleteer is unique due to those conspicuous red feet!
Usually, the male Violet-crowned Woodnymph looks quite dark, almost black, under normal light conditions... but this bird really glows with the adequate angle.
The Amazilias hummingbirds are a very distinctive group present in almost every feeder... and the most ubiquitous is the Rufous-tailed Hummingbird... this one was singing! (can you see the "rufous"?).
The Blue-chested Hummingbird only showed itself for two seconds... this photo is from Cerro Azul, but of a different trip.
In spite of the bad light, the Snowy-bellied Hummingbird is unmistakable due to its sharply demarcated white belly and metallic call.
And last, but not less important, the tiny Violet-capped Hummingbird is almost endemic to Panama, barely reaching Colombia and the single member of it genus Goldmania (named in honor of Mr. E. A. Goldman, who collected the type specimen in Cerro Azul, back in march of 1911).  Cerro Azul is certainly the easiest place in the world to see this bird.  This is a female, the glorious male didn't want photos!
Eleven species!  Not bad for a single day just sitting in front of well-kept feeders!

1 comment:

  1. Amazing shots of the beautiful hummingbirds. I can only see the Ruby-throated hummingbird in my yard and only in the summer.