Friday, August 15, 2008

The artful Dodger

I don't know if he is playing games or naturally shy, either way he is good at it. He is a hummingbird, one of three that come to our hummingbird feeder (it works !) on a daily basis. He is not shy really, just camera shy. Each of the hummingbirds had to scope things out before they dove in to the plastic flowers which contain a sugar water solution. I accept this as the natural order of their instinct. Humbert the first was no exception, slowly exploring the four flowers until he was satisfied that there was no danger. He is all business but you can get a shot of him if you are quick enough. Hummesina too was shy but now has accepted the camera as part of the package - she even poses now in several angles after every feeding.
And then there is the artful dodger - he was the first on the scene and the last one everyday right before twilight. He makes a great spectacle entrance, smacking his lips (I know birds don't have lips but that is what it sounds like) to let you know he is there. Then the game begins. He waits for you to fumble for the camera, he waits until he hears the whirr of the auto-focus then he darts behind the feeder. If you move to the left or the right to get a better angle, he adjusts also, keeping the feeder between you and him. If he sense you have given up by putting the camera down, he will come around the feeder and taunt you by smacking his lips and posing all around the various windchimes and prayer sticks and of course the feeder. He will do this until he hears the whirr of the auto focus and then he will dart away to his safe house in the bush (in which of course he is virtually invisible). This is where he will stay until he hears me say "He's gone." At this point, he does one of two things depending on whois trying to photograph him. If it is me, he will stay away because he knows I am wily and could be trying to trick him. If it is my wife, he comes as soon as he hears her put on the lens cap on the camera. Click. Appear. Unclick. Gone.
One saturday, he did this dance with my wife for tens minutes straight. I had to interfene at that point as she was about to throw the camera at him. This was hard for me to do because I was rolling on the floor up to that point. laughing.
So there is no picture I can post of this little one because he has lived up to his name. Still I wonder why he does it - perhaps for my own amusement. I enjoy teasers from the natural world, it seems like they are playing. My wife however does not enjoy the joke as much as me. I wonder why.


Soulsearcher said...

Nature is fun as it continually shows us that we are not as in charge as we would like to imagine. This was a nice piece, very amusing.

Lin said...

Good to know that there are frustrating creatures in your yard too! Oh, I get the usual tongue clucking when I get frustrated with nature ("oh, Lin, you cannot control everything") but I guess that's the joy of it, isn't it?!

Either way, have fun with the birds. They are beastly and mean when it comes to sharing their sugar water and fun to watch. Send a picture--if you can get one!

About Me

I am a crabby old man who hates everything
I am a tiny wonderer in a large world
I am a young hippie tree-hugger
I am a mid-life crisis disaster area.
I am an attitude of stillness waiting for a wind.
I have not decided yet.