I usually see the first hummingbirds flying around my prairie by mid April. Actually, before I see the hummingbirds, I usually hear the rapid chirping sound one hummingbird makes as it chases another hummingbird away from the feeding area it has staked out for itself. But not this year. April went by without spotting or hearing any hummingbirds and then May. Nothing.
What could be wrong? My red yucca, Gregg salvia, and rock penstemon plants – all hummingbird favorites – are covered in blooms. Could the drought across Texas have forced the birds to take a different migratory path? I don’t know. I found this website that tracks the spring migration of the ruby-throated hummingbird and it looks similar to prior years. In fact, hummers were spotted in this area on March 17. Somehow I have missed them.
Earlier this week, I took this picture of Pale-leaf Yucca, Yucca pallida, surrounded by Rock Penstemon, Penstemon baccharifolius, and four nerve daisy, Tetraneuris scaposa.
A few minutes later, I went inside and looked out the window. There, among those very Rock Penstemon flowers, was a ruby-throated hummingbird hovering around and sipping nectar. Finally.
I have not seen a hummingbird again this week, but I know that at least one of them found my prairie this year.
Click here to see a photo I took last year of a hummingbird feeding on Big Red Sage.