[Tweeters] Puzzling male Rufous behavior

Sarah Schmidt 4bats at ixoreus.com
Sun Apr 13 20:52:06 PDT 2014


For the past two days, a male Rufous Hummingbird has been in near
constant attendance by one of our hummingbird feeders. Of course it's no
surprise to find a male being territorial at a feeder and chasing away
other hummers! What I've never seen before is that when he is perched on
a nearby fence or twig, /his wings are a constant whir/.

When he sits on the feeder drinking, he rests them at his sides. When he
zips off in chase of another hummer, obviously they whir. But between
these periodic behaviors, he perches with his wings in constant motion,
vibrating invisibly fast just as when flying.

I first noticed him doing this at 9:30 yesterday morning. I checked
frequently throughout the day, and he never stopped whirring his wings
when he perched. Hour after hour after hour. Today he's perching in the
same spots, and although twice we glimpsed him with wings briefly at
rest, very soon they were whirring again.

Can anyone give me insights into this behavior?

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Sarah Schmidt
4bats at ixoreus.com
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