14 March 2012

Cartoon Bird...ECUADOR (25-26 Feb.)

Betty, Laura and I spent a lot of time over these days admiring the awesome hummingbird activity around the feeders at Wild Sumaco Lodge. They have several sets of feeders there, some buried deep in the forest, and others easily accessible right by their magnificent veranda.

When I last visited there a few years ago the undoubted champion feeders were the ones within the forest that were in the shade and offered little hope for photographers. However, times change and now the "veranda feeders" are amazing, with many species that were rare or absent there just a few years ago now regular and very photogenic indeed...

One such species was the thrilling Wire-crested Thorntail which you needed to hope would visit flowers in the garden before. However, it seems now these incredible hummers have found the feeders, and look set to never leave them. We enjoyed numerous males of these "cartoon birds" with their punky crests, ginger boots, and thorny tails. So as a tribute to this highly entertaining species I putting a special gallery here for them only. I am pretty confident that Betty shared my admiration for this bird, as she could not be torn away from the feeders!

More to come from Sumaco - including more hummers, of course, and the odd antpitta too...

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