[CT Birds] Amazing Hummingbird

Marty Swanhall mswanhall at earthlink.net
Wed Jun 30 12:52:10 EDT 2010

WOW...Marty from Woodbury

----- Original Message ----- 
From: "Mary Keleher" <maryeak at yahoo.com>
To: "Massbird" <Massbird at world.std.com>; "CapeCodBirds" 
<capecodbirds at yahoogroups.com>
Sent: Wednesday, June 30, 2010 10:41 AM
Subject: [MASSBIRD] Hummingbird Recaptured in Alaska

> Thought this would be of interest.
> From: "Fred Dietrich" <fdietrich at YAHOO.COM>
> Sent: Monday, June 28, 2010 9:13 PM
> Subject: [FLBIRDS] Hummingbird Recaptured in Alaska
> I just got some wonderful news this afternoon. A female rufous hummingbird 
> that I banded on January 13, 2010 at Pam Flynn's house in Tallahassee was 
> recaptured today in Chenega Bay, Alaska, nearly 4,000 miles away. When I 
> examined the bird I checked its bill and found that about 50% of it 
> contained striations, indicating that this bird was born last summer. 
> Instead of migrating south to Mexico like most rufous, it came east and 
> spent the winter here. This recapture is by far the greatest distance 
> between banding site and breeding grounds. One of the previous long 
> distances was a bird recaptured here after being banded in west Texas, 
> about 980 miles. That one really pales compared to this bird. I'm not sure 
> what the previous record was but I think this may be 1,200 miles longer. 
> One reason is that there are few banders in Alaska to band and recapture 
> birds in the NW end of their territory.
> I have posted some photos of this bird that I took when I banded it, at 
> http://upload.pbase.com/edit_gallery/fdietrich/alaska. The last page is a 
> record of the data that I collected and reported to the Bird Banding 
> Laboratory in Maryland, the repository of all data that is collected 
> through bird banding.
> While it has long been believed that the birds that winter in the SE 
> states may have come from as far away as Alaska, this is the first time 
> that we have been able to document it on both ends of the migration route.
> Without banding hummingbirds, we would have no idea of their migration 
> habits. Obviously there was no harm done to this bird during banding and 
> carrying the band didn't affect its ability to fly. The weight of the band 
> is less than .02% of its body weight, many times less than the relative 
> weight of a person wearing a wrist watch, and since the bird tucks its 
> legs up into its body feathers when it flies, there is no increased 
> aerodynamic drag caused by the band.
> I will be banding at a few homes this summer but our main research project 
> continues to be banding wintering hummers, those that are here between 
> November 15th and March 1st. Keep your feeders out and I'll be waiting to 
> hear from you this winter, and especially to see if this long range 
> migrant returns to Pam's house.
> Fred Dietrich
> Tallahassee, FL
> Mary Keleher,
> Mashpee, MA

More information about the CTBirds mailing list