Over 2 months ago our last hummingbird gave us a farewell and headed for the tropics. Days and weeks following, a steady flow of migrant birds continued through our yards in the North and also made their way to a Southern location that many have never been before. Young birds of all species made that flight south, not knowing what lay ahead. Mystery or excitement, who knows what goes through the mind of a little bird, but their calling is common throughout the bird world.
Then you get the rare ones. Some times in nature you get a real anomaly which is impossible to explain, but there's always a fraction of a percentage of birds that don't get the memo, or simply follow their rebellious side and reject instinct.
3 months back, a Rufous hummingbird showed up in Edmonton, Alberta, Canada, the same city as I'm located. He was a young male, initially hard to identify. He made himself comfortable in an area of Edmonton, where he found a couple homes that provided him a regular supply of nectar. These homes were a few blocks apart from each other, but this Rufous kept both options available. He made the trip frequently between locations, always making sure his food sources remained.
Today, November 7, 2018, and even the last Canada geese are calling it quits, and leaving our snow covered fields for a place less white. But what remains is one lone Rufous, now dressed up in more mature colors. He has remained too long, to the point where leaving now would probably be fatal. No food sources remain for hundreds of miles south of him, so his choice to leave is no longer an option.
I was contacted by a gentleman who has persistently kept up with changing feeders, and created a system to keep the feeder from freezing, as temperatures have been -10 to -15 Celsius over several nights, and remaining well below zero each day. Protein supplements have been added to make sure he gets his requirements. This isn't an environment for any hummingbird, not just because of the temperatures, but for the complete absence of food, other than the nectar being provided.
Here's where I'm asking for a few suggestions to anyone who has an idea of how to help out. I will pass on the information to the family in need. You can leave comments on my facebook post or on this blog site.
Thank you in advance!
Author of Jewel of the North. Please post your comments and questions.