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Black-chinned Hummingbird

Archilochus alexandri


Rural scrub desert bordering riparian


Black-chinned Hummingbirds are the most numerous here. I normally put out 10 feeders and (with the help of several observers) have counted up to 120 at a time. Right now I'm putting out 10 quarts of nectar per day. Black-chins are the first to arrive here in the spring, usually the first week of April, and usually the last to leave in late September/early October.

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ShawnLaBrier 9 years ago

Thank you all for the kind comments!

MitchRay 9 years ago

Great shot!

SusanEllison 9 years ago

pretty pretty birdie

HeatherMiller 9 years ago

We are in drought here too. I see my hummingbirds flitter in and out quickly. There is only one species here. They come up to me all the time, especially if I'm in a tie-dye shirt.

ShawnLaBrier 9 years ago

What a great site, Heather! Thanks for the link. I never use food coloring. If you've got red on a hummingbird feeder or orange on an oriole feeder it's sufficient to catch their attention. It's kind of entertaining going outside in a red, pink, or orange shirt. I get lots of hummingbirds coming up close, like 6 inches to a foot away, checking me out to see if I'm any good to eat. :o)

ShawnLaBrier 9 years ago

Thank you, Alice! It's a lot of work trying to keep these little feathered hogs fed! But ... not only is it very rewarding, but I couldn't in good conscience bring myself to stop putting out nectar for them. With the drought here in the desert SW (we've only 2 inches of precip. this year!) there's so little for them to eat.

HeatherMiller 9 years ago

Shawn, I have been reading up on photographing hummingbirds and came across this site which is interesting, although I don't understand a lot of the technical talk, the author translates a lot of it:

For your sugar you add food coloring or find it unnecessary?

alicelongmartin 9 years ago

Nice pictures. You deserve a few pictures for all your work!

ShawnLaBrier 9 years ago

Hi Heather. With so many hummingbirds, even a person with my meager photography skills can occasionally get a good shot. I make my own nectar using 4 parts water to 1 part sugar. During the spring/summer I buy my sugar in 50 lb. bags. ;o)

HeatherMiller 9 years ago

What a wonderful photo opportunity for you to have so many hummingbirds. Do you make your own nectar and if so, what is your ratio? I love that the pics have him in flight. Beautiful work!

Spotted by

New Mexico, USA

Spotted on Aug 30, 2011
Submitted on Aug 30, 2011

Spotted for Mission

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