Click the image above to see a high resolution inset. Description:
This photo of an Anna's hummingbird is presented because of it's clarity, detail, and the beautiful gorget. Sometimes the head is irridescent in the same way, but in this shot, only the neck shines brightly. The delicate curves in the wing are common in hummingbird photographs, because they make a figure-eight sculling motion, getting lift on both the "downstroke" aand "upstroke.
The feather is missing on his breast because these cute, lovable balls of fluff are really aggressive monsters, continually battling competitors for dominance of good nectar sources. When these guys collide, it's amazing how hard they hit, and that they escape undamaged considering they weigh less than a nickle does.
Location: This bird was photographed at Ash Canyon B&B, run by Mary Jo Ballator. An excellent stop on any birding tour. Day visits are inexpensive. Check about photography policy in advance. (There might be extra charges, depending on your methods.)
This bird is often seen in Arizona and California where it winters in both locations.
Cave Creek, Sunny Flats Campground in Coronado National Forest, just outside of the very small town of Portal, Arizona. Cave Creek is a birding hotspot.
Subject: Anna's Hummingbird, scientific name Calypte Anna. A nectar feeder and potted salvia was used to attract birds.
This bird is common in middle and low desert regions, such as Tucson, less common in "sky island" habitat at 1 mile elevation at typical inverted treeline of sky island ecosystems.
Photographic Technique: High Speed flash photography in an outdoor studio, using a custom built four head Olsen Ultra flash at 1/2 power 1/33000 second flash duration. White cardboard background. Usually at 1/200th second shutter speed (sync speed). F16 or above. (F22 is preferred). Canon 100mm macro lens F2.8 USM. Canon 5D body. Tripods for camera, flashes, and perhaps feeder and background.
Date/Time: 04/22/2009 8:14 am, if I remembered to set my camera's clock for this time zone.