For as many as 15 years now, hummingbirds have been spotted along the Georgia and Carolina coasts during the winter months. In an effort to try and answer numerous questions regarding the hummingbirds, Fred Bassett who heads up the nonprofit Hummingbird Research, Inc. has been banding the birds. To this date, he has banded almost 2,000 hummers of 10 different species in backyards from Mobile Bay (in Alabama) to Tallahassee and as far south as Tampa. Almost half of the banded birds have been rufous hummingbirds (pictured above) which nest in the Pacific Northwest and Alaska.
So, if you leave a sugar-water feeder out during the fall and winter months, keep an eye out for hummers in your backyard. The Hummer/Bird Study Group is requesting that you notify them of any sightings at firstname.lastname@example.org.
I see lots of hummers during the summer, but can't say I've ever seen one in the winter. Have any of you seen one in your garden?
*Note: I always have trouble getting the NWF.org website to load. If you can't access that article, you may want to Google "The Hummingbirds of Winter."