After several weeks of hard work by the adult hummingbirds, the young are starting to appear in garden's everywhere. It's a new world with so many colors and the young just can't get enough. They are naive and investigate everything, curious and poke at everything, and a bit foolish when they fly up into the face of the adult males and antagonize them. It's all fun and games until you poke the wrong hummingbird.
It really is quite amusing when you see a young hummingbird test out its intimidation skills. One adult male Ruby was tucked away into a Lilac bush going through an early molt. Nothing was amusing to him. He would feed every 10 to 15 minutes and then tuck back into the bush. He didn't want to bother anyone and also wanted the same respect. He chose one feeder and ignored the rest. Over the next week or two he would regain the strength and fat that he lost over the summer. But one little juvenile showed up, "hmmm, a new feeder". This young one had the choice of several other feeders, but chose this one. He saw the old boy was tucked away and angry, but made it his new challenge. He did a couple fake attempts toward the feeder, knowing he was being watched. If that wasn't enough, he then flared out his tail and inched his way toward the angry male. He inched closer and closer, and was just lighting the fuse. I couldn't help but think, "What Are You Doing!" He reached that point when you could nearly see those new pinfeathers popping out. The adult male simply had enough. Squeakity squeak went on for some time as the grownup was teaching the young one a little bit about respect. Up into the sky, back toward the ground, through the trees, around the bushes, back up into the sky… and it continued. Eventually, the young one managed an escape, and rested deep in the clematis. Within seconds his ADD took hold and his attention was quickly diverted to a secret little treasure found undercover, "hmmm, a new flower".
Juvenile male Ruby-throat hummingbird. July 30, 2018. N.E. of Edmonton, Alberta, Canada.
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