Monday, September 7, 2009

Anna's Hummingbird

Fall is a great time of year. The plants are producing berries and flowering, the weather becomes a little cooler. The last couple of days have also been unusually sunny, creating the perfect opportunity for photography. Below is a thistle.

These branches have moss growing on them.

This was taken at the Botanical Garden at Golden Gate Park.

I like the light on this tree.

In the same way that light changes the look of the plants, it has an even more dramatic effect on the hummingbirds. The following pictures are all the same bird.

Anna's hummingbirds are very common in the Bay area and they say it's the only one to stay through winter, although I've seen rufous hummingbirds in San Francisco during the winter-spring breeding season. I like how the white feathers next to their eyes looks like the sclera in a human eye.

So, you know how the feathers looked black in the above picture? It's a trick of the light. Male Anna's hummingbirds have a pink hood. You can see it below, apologies for the blurriness.

Here is an example of the ruby color, taken by an extremely skilled photographer.

In other lighting, the hummingbird looks green/gray. Below is an Anna's hummingbird in a brighter light where you can see the tiniest glimmer of the ruby to the right of his eye.

I really like Anna's hummingbirds because of their call. It sounds like two swords crashing together or an electrical signal gone crazy. Cornell's website has a sample.

Below is another blurry picture of a hummingbird on the left. I like the blur in this one.

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