Rufous Hummingbirds have arrived back in the Comox Valley & have been very active in our yard for the past week or so. The males arrive before the females & set up territories which they defend relentlessly.
A male Rufous found a choice perch in a small maple under the overhanging roof of the bamboo screen around the bonsai garden.
The perch was ideal for taking shelter during some rain showers. The location near the hummingbird feeder allowed him to keep watch & chase off any rivals for the food source.
He returned to his perch the following days when the weather improved, and in better light his throat gorget glowed even brighter.
In the front garden, a female Rufous found her own perch near another source of nectar. The female has just a bit of rufous colouring on the sides.
The red-flowering currant was in full bloom and the female was busy among the blossoms. I managed a quick photo through a pink blur of blooms.
The currant is a beautiful native shrub, one of the first flowering plants of the season that attracts hummingbirds.
After waiting patiently I got a photo of the female in the open at a stem of the red-flowering currant.
A male hovered around the feeder, chasing off any rivals. At this close distance I could see some green feathers on the head & back, so this one may have been a young male. The mature male should have an entirely rufous back.
Several females & males visited the feeder, usually chasing each other away, but occasionally a couple would tolerate another feeding at the same time.
We believe the hummingbirds are nesting in the yard, but haven’t found the location. A couple of days ago I visited Moorecroft Regional Park in Nanoose, where the resident caretaker, an expert naturalist, pointed out a hummingbird nest in a large cedar. The lighting was very dim but I managed a snapshot of the female Rufous on her tiny nest of lichen & moss.