[Tweeters] Rufous again-female this time

Kristin Stewart kristinstewart01 at comcast.net
Sat Feb 27 18:04:41 PST 2016

We had a male Rufous Hummer on the 25th and again today. This is about 2 1/2 weeks earlier than usual. Also had a Tree swallow yesterday, about a month early. We live in NE Olympia in a "cold pocket" and are generally about a month later than Nisqually which is only about 7 miles from our place. But plants are blooming early also... The Red-flowering current is showing lots of pink/red, daffodils and crocus are blooming, as are camellias and of course, the hellebores. The heather is almost done. I would guess areas near the water, which are usually some weeks ahead of us are even more in bloom.

Kristin Stewart

Sent from my iPhone

> On Feb 27, 2016, at 12:13 PM, Mike Clarke <redeyegravy at gmail.com> wrote:


> Just had a bright male this morning at Nisqually.


> Mike Clarke

> Pullman


>> On Feb 26, 2016 6:30 PM, <earthman1950 at whidbey.com> wrote:

>> At risk of losing my birding reputation, I am reporting a female rufous hummingbird that was on a feeder outside my living room this afternoon. I'm not one who looks for rare sightings, travels to see birds in unusual places, or tries to see a species first in an area. I just like watching birds. I did not get any photos as it didn't stay on the feeder very long, but I will be looking for it tomorrow.


>> I was sitting watching tv when this bird appeared on the feeder right outside the window. It looked small, just as a male rufous had first appeared two days ago on the same feeder. After looking at nothing but Anna's for the past six months, the slightly smaller size of a rufous is readily apparent. I grabbed my binos from the table next to the chair and took a look. The bird was on the feeder, mostly facing me. I could clearly see red on the flank, a red spot on the throat, and some streaks on the sides of the throat. The bird was definitely lighter in color than an Anna's on the front. I could not see the back of the bird from that angle. I know this is early, especially for a female, but there is nothing else it could be but a rufous. I was outside for a couple hours at our place during mid day today and looked for rufous hummers during that time, but didn't see any. There are plenty of Anna's right now spread out over our acreage with 9 feeders, but not noticeably more than in the past month. Our Red-flowering Currants in our field are breaking into bloom as well, all 33 of them, which will hopefully be a beacon to any passers by.


>> I looked on the internet to see if it might be possible that an immature male could look like a female at this time of year, but I could not find that information. The sources said that the young males have their adult plumage by winter. Is there any chance that this bird was a male that hadn't gained its adult plumage yet? Seems unlikely, but perhaps someone here would know if that is a possibility.


>> George Heleker

>> earthman1950 at whidbey.com

>> Clinton, WA-Whidbey Island




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