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“In all things of nature there is something of the marvelous.” Aristotle
Hummingbirds are attracted to the color red. So don’t be surprised when wearing a red shirt and having that morning cup of caffeine on the back deck . A face to face confrontation will certainly get the juices flowing.
Bird bander and hummer expert, Bob Sargent, noted that hummers visit the same feeders on almost the same day every year. So keep the feeders clean and ready for these remarkable visitors. Bob graciously identified this photo of a ruby-throated hummingbird. Ruby-throated females and immature males do not have the brilliant red feathers on the throat area. Rest in peace, Bob.
For more information about ruby-throated hummingbirds visit the Audubon site at
“It is ironic to think that man might determine his own future by something so seemingly trivial as the choice of an insect spray.” Rachel Carson
It is sometimes difficult to tell the difference between a bumble bee and a carpenter bee. The carpenter bee has a shiny abdomen while the bumble bee has a hairy abdomen. The abdomen is the third segment of an insect’s body. Are you able to identify this little pollinator? Note to photographer-a few pix from the posterior view of this industrious critter might be a good idea. It appears to be too busy to be offended! Learn more about bees at https://insectidentification.org/insect-description.asp?identification=common-Eastern-Bumble-Bee
“Nature is loved by what is best in us.” Ralph Waldo Emerson
A hummingbird clearwing moth collects nectar from a vinca blossom. While most sphinx moths are nocturnal, the hummingbird clearwing flies during the day. Learn more about this mysterious creature at https://www.massaudubon.org/learn/nature-wildlife/insects-arachnids/hummingbird-moth-clearwing-moth
“The more clearly we can focus our attention on the wonders and realities of the universe about us, the less taste we shall have for destruction.” Rachel Carson
Many blissful hours can be spent in capturing the exquisite beauty and absolute mystery of pollinators. What better place could there be for a shutterbug to pursue the joy of photography than in his or her own backyard! The spicebush swallowtail, one of seven swallowtails found in coastal Alabama, can be identified by the underwing pattern. Notice the “skyrocket trail” in the pattern of yellow dots.
In following the busy schedules of daily life, it is often difficult to appreciate the natural surroundings in which one lives and shares with other living things. Please let this space help in providing an awareness of the varied and beautiful coastal environment on which we all depend.
“Those who contemplate the beauty of the earth find reserves of strength that will endure for as long as life lasts.” Rachel Carson
Giant Swallowtail on Tropical Milkweed
The National Fish and Wildlife Service describes pollinators as animals that transfer pollen from one flower to another and may include bees, butterflies and other insects as wells as some birds and bats. Some visit plants for nectar, nest material, shelter, or mates while others including bees, collect pollen. Pollination involves the transfer of pollen from the male part (stamen) , to the female part (stigma) of the same or another flower. This transfer may result in fertilization and the production of seeds and fruit. While most plants rely upon animals for pollination, some plants such as corn and tomatoes, rely upon the wind.
Due to habitat loss and degradation, scientists have noted a decline in wild pollinators. Honeybees, a non-native species and managed population, suffer from parasites and pathogens. This is worthy of concern as honeybees contributed to over $19 billion of crops in 2010. Learn more about pollinators from the National Fish and Wildlife Service . https://www.fws.gov/pollinators/