Living in the northernmost region of the hummingbird's territory makes me one of the last to receive my hummingbirds. The 2 1/2 month wait from the time they enter the Southern United States builds my anxieties to a dangerous level. Winters of the north are far too much for even the fattest goose, and as for me, eight months of torpor would suffice through those negative temperatures.
As many hummingbirds won't survive the previous southern migration, predators, and the northern migration, I sit anxiously and wait for my locals to return. Will it be a new male that establishes territory in our yard, or will it be good ol' Ziggy. The older these birds get, the wiser and more alert they are of dangers. I believe the average age is highly dependent on a few variables. For those that travel the shortest distances, they may gain a few extra years. For those travelling the greatest distances, they'll probably encounter many more dangers in their larger area covered. I not only wait to see my hummingbirds return, but I hope many will be my regulars from the previous year. Most of the time their behaviors are very similar to all the rest, but Ziggy is unique. Although many hummingbird's appear to have A.D.D, Ziggy has a more severe case. They all typically fly in a straight line, and gradually veer in the direction of their intended location, not Ziggy. He appears to change his mind every couple of seconds, which makes his flight pattern even too tough for missile detection, and the reason he got his name.
Will it be Ziggy that'll arrive? Did he survive the past year with all the dangers? Only time will tell.
Adult Male Ruby-throat hummingbird. N.E. of Edmonton, Alberta, Canada. June 2017
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