blackboard wrote:how do you get them to do that??????????????????
I just spend a lot of time out on my deck so they can become accustomed to my presence and know I'm not going to hurt them. Then I sit very still and quiet, and think happy thoughts! If there are a lot of them around, one is bound to eventually come to the feeder I'm holding. And since it doesn't have a perch, I just let them use my finger on the other hand for that!
By the way, if anyone thinks the photo has been altered, you can see the video version of it here:
To FaithieAnn: I've always regretted I wasn't smiling for this, but sometimes you have to sit perfectly still for a very long time before one will finally trust you and come to you. It gets really hard to hold a smile for that long without changing your expression! You may notice during the video that what scares it off my finger after a few seconds was an involuntary swallow on my part. My heart was beating so fast and hard, I just couldn't stop it! I've never played poker, but yes, I've been told I'm quite a "stone face". ;-)
To MargaretK: No, it didn't actually stick its beak in my nose. Just looks that way from the angle of the video. I could never have sat still through that! They do get very brave and dart at your face sometimes though, and I guess they must know how scary they are when they do that. Just trying to chase me away from their favorite feeder, like they do with each other!
Your videos of these charming little birds are wonderful --- you must have a very attractive habitat that is irresistible for them. Or maybe they are just fascinated by You ;-)) Thank you for sharing the time you spend with them!
Thank you very much, FaithieAnn. Actually, my garden is very small, but I do keep it about 99% dedicated to plants that hummers can eat from. I live in the woods on the side of a mountain, and I can't plant anything in the ground for several reasons -- very poor rocky soil, mostly shade from so many trees, and hordes of ravenous deer that stampede through every single night. Because of that, I'm limited to growing everything in containers on a small deck which is only about 300 square feet (some of which is occupied by a hot tub) and about 15 feet off the ground. (Ha, take that, deer!) Some things just won't grow well in containers, so I'm always experimenting to find things that suit my needs. I also keep several feeders hanging out on three sides of the house, especially before the flowers start blooming and during migration in late summer and fall. Most people think I'm just a freak who has a really strange obsession, but once in a while I do find people who understand my passion about it. I'm hoping to get some better pictures this summer because I recently bought a better digital camera, so stay tuned for more...! ;-)
That is a great photo! The closest I've gotten was standing next to a feeder when a hummie was using it. I tend to get squirmy after sitting still so long. It is nice seeing others who appreciate the birds.
So far, not many deer here. We've seen a few. I heard if you plant fragrant things like mint, they will avoid feeding in the area as they need to be able to smell a predator coming.
Rabbits have caused us more damage by tromping through some plantings. They haven't eaten much that we can tell. I live out in the country and my yard is starting to take on a jungle-like appearance. I should have paid attention to height before putting in some of the natives in the front yard. The Columbine has gotten taller than I've seen it in the past with the Ironweed and Blazingstars towering over that even.