Hummingbirds Around Lake Powell

Long Post Warning: I am no bird expert, leaning more towards real estate expert, but this past spring was intriguing. I live in a small Lake Powell south shore community called Big Water which is on the Utah side of border. For 27 years I have planted, and nurtured, numerous trees and a large garden both of which have attracted some pretty cool wildlife. Before we built a fence the coyotes used to come in to the yard and take peaches and pomegranates pretty much every night in the fall, cleaning off the bottom of the “tree/bush”.

We have had hummingbirds in the past and usually I spot a few nests a year. This year has been a bit different in that all of the nests were low in the trees, basically eye level for a six foot tall person, not so much for me. Two of them were found, and almost pulled down, in an effort to make room to walk under the trees after the spring shooting of growth that occurred.

In the videos there are the front nest, back nest, and window nest to help identify the nests. In hindsight I should have used my good camera and video recorder, but it was so easy to use the cell phone, which is always with me.

Not being sure what kind of hummingbirds these were, I reached out to a couple of friends who know birds. Jody Gebhardt helped with the information that there are probably have more in the area but black-throated, rufous, and broadtail hummingbirds are the most common.

In one of the sweetest videos you can see mama bird get in the nest with the baby and start pushing it and showing it how to use her wings.

Enjoy the rest of the videos!

This was one of the first videos and is of the little guy in the back yard nest. Amazing to me how these nests held up in the wind, sun, and lastly rain.

This one has the mama and baby and is from the back nest.

Side nest with mama hummingbird feeding baby. Because this was through a window it is hard to see just how small they are. I was maybe 18 inches away.

Tense moments as the mama and baby are both standing the nest and baby gets pretty wobbly.

A preening baby. I think this is the first day the little guy really noticed me at the window.

Hummingbird Twins in the front yard. I did not get a lot of video of them though I spent hours watching them. The way they were positioned in the tree did not give a great video perspective. Here they are just about outgrowing their home.

Here is a couple of days later with the twins. I shot this from the back of my Yukon windows. The next day when I returned home, they were both gone.

This is the little guy in the back yard. As I put the camera away and started to leave the mama bird showed up on the branch next to the nest. I took about 5 more steps and turned back around in time to see both of them fly off. Magical.

This is the baby out of the window. I was watching as he hopped out of the nest and on to the branch. Mama had buzzed by twice. I ran and grabbed my phone and got back in time to see this.. the first flight. They stopped at the tree closest to my garden on a branch together and then 30 seconds later they were gone.

As a follow up I’ve had more hummingbirds in my yard than I ever remember in the past. This evening, while watering the trees in my front yard, one hummingbird came and checked out the water flowing from the hose for a good 45 seconds and then came back a second time to hover around my face.

Here are some shots from when all the babies were little including a shot of the mama bird nesting on the twin eggs. Click on the photo to see what it is!

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This has been a somewhat bittersweet, yet inspiring, experience this spring and summer watching these mamas and babies. I hope the videos have given you a glimpse into what went on in my little corner of the world.

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