Arousing Admiration: The Charm of Hummingbirds (737)
(NewsUSA) - Well, actually, it's both … the charm of hummingbirds is most certainly apropos and "a charm" of hummingbirds is actually factual! Yep, that's right, the collective noun for these unique creatures - just like a gaggle of geese or a flock of birds, is a charm of hummingbirds. Since the definition of the noun 'charm' is "the power of giving delight or arousing admiration," one doesn't need to be a wordsmith to see how right that is.
Hummingbirds are charming.
And there are over 330 varieties of the species, Trochilidae, which is their biological family name and they're found in the Western Hemisphere. When one sees a hummingbird, it's a stunning, stop-in-your-tracks sight. Their brilliant throat color is actually a result of the iridescence in the arrangement of their feathers, not color pigment. Light level, moisture, angle of viewing and other factors all influence just how bright and colorful their throats may appear. Perhaps you've heard them, too - the name hummingbird comes from the buzzing sound of their fast-flapping wings.
Hummers are migrant birds, so although many stay close to the Equator, lots of varieties travel this time of year, so there may be a 'charm' coming to your backyard soon. If you have the desire to see one up close or are curious about how to attract them to your yard, the folks at Cole's Wild Bird Feed Co have got you covered. First, they figured out the engineering of an elegant, deceptively simple, easy-to-use (and easy-to-clean!) feeder. The patented Hummer High Rise has a clever design that offers a stress-free position for your charming guests to get their fill, a fantastic 360-degree vista, all the while keeping other unwanted creatures at bay.
For example there's an ant moat that stops the armies of industrious workers who'd love to get some sweet nectar, from beating a path to the liquid food. The genius is, it's an actual moat, with nothing but H2O keeping the ants at bay, so while it does its job, it doesn't do harm. Nice!
A charm magnet.
The second definition for the noun 'charm' is a small ornament worn on a necklace or bracelet. Hummingbirds weigh on average the same as a nickel, so while you'll want to wear a replica from the jewelers, Hummers can be your own garden's jewelry all season long.
And in return for their arousing your admiration, they'll feed on those annoying garden insects and pests. For their small size, hummers eat a lot. They are voracious eaters, feeding on mosquitos, gnats, spiders, aphids and other six-legged creepy crawlers. But, besides pests for protein, their primary 'food group' is nectar, which they get in by flitting from flower to flower and using their long beaks and equally long tongues to get their fill. All that flitting is exhausting!
Since hummingbirds drink up to half their body weight a day of nectar you can help them out by keeping your High Rise fully stocked, for a one-stop fill of their favorite nectar treat.
Let's not leave out the definition of the verb, "charm," which is to "delight greatly." If you want these Disney-esque caricatures to delight you on a regular basis with their wonder - and bring their distinctive song to your yard - there is something you can buy: the creme-de la creme of what these charmers crave: Nature's Garden from Cole's.
By identifying and harnessing the nutrients of the hummer's favorite wildflowers, and tapping their vast store of wild bird knowhow, Cole's has created the next-best-thing to actual flower nectar - a proprietary formula that's far and away a cut above your 'garden-variety' sugar water. Nature's Garden is a healthy, all-natural alternative to homemade syrup, no mixing and no boiling required. It comes in an eco-friendly soft pouch; just shake and pour. You'll be delighted with how easy it is to keep your hummer feeder filled and overjoyed at seeing hummers frequent your yard. Your neighborhood hummingbirds will love it, so they'll keep coming back.
A brief postscript: a natural predator to the hummingbird is the praying mantis. Despite their equally small size and saintly appearance, they feed on our fascinating feathered friends and are a real threat (and a protected species), so if you find a mantis hanging around your High Rise, take care to evict it gently, to a lower piece of real estate and keep hummers safe.
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