The Good, The Bad, The Bird

By Ralph Dickerson

Approximately one month ago I decided to purchase a hummingbird feeder for my yard. I decided to purchase the feeder after a hummingbird mistook my head for a feeder and nearly flew in my ear! As I sat on my porch swing, a hummingbird came within an inch or two from my ear. I jumped, which startled the bird away.

I went to Owensboro, looked around at a couple of places and found a feeder, hummingbird food and a shepherd’s hook on which to hang the feeder. I put the feeder beside my porch in some type of flowering plant.

It did not take the hummingbirds long to find the feeder as the first one flew up about an hour after I installed it. Since then, two hummingbirds visit the feeder at the same time each day, between 6 p.m. and 7:30 p.m.

In the month since I installed my feeder, I discovered the birds possess two very distinct personalities. One hummingbird is very nonchalant. It does not matter to this bird if I am sitting in my porch swing or not when it comes by to feed. If I am sitting in my swing, the bird sometimes glances my way, but continues to eat the food. Sometimes it ignores me entirely. I named this bird Angel.

The other hummingbird is totally different. This one does not like me being anywhere near the feeder, or even being outside when it comes to feed. When I am sitting in my swing when this bird comes to feed, it flies up to the feeder, then floats up to my eye level and just stares at me for a few seconds and flies away. It may repeat this process several more times in an effort to get me to leave. It also will do high-speed passes by the feeder to also get me to leave. I named him Clint.

Last week Clint tried something new. He flew up to the feeder as I sat on my swing, floated up to my eye level while staring at me, and then flew slowly toward me in an effort to intimidate me. Clint literally came to the end of my swing and hovered in the air for about five seconds before zooming off. As he hovered in the air staring at me, I imagined the theme song from the movie ‘The Good, The Bad and The Ugly’ playing.

I hope he does not fly up next week packing a weapon! It will get real interesting if he does! It would be quite interesting fighting a duel with a hummingbird at 10 paces considering I am a much larger target!

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