Spring is Here: Hummingbirds Migrating Back to New England
We've technically been in spring for a few weeks now, but it seemed like the nature around us had yet to show signs of life...that is, until recent days.
Now, flowers are slowly starting to bloom, and we're starting to see pops of color again. Before you know it, the trees will follow suit, and New England will once again be lush and green.
Another sign from nature that indicate warmer days ahead is the twittering of birds.
Does anyone else experience a moment every year around February or March when you hear a bird chirping and realize you haven't heard that sound in months? It truly is uplifting for the soul.
For one particular species of bird, you may not recognize them by their songs, but rather their tiny size, affinity for nectar, and most notably, their unbelievably fast wings.
Yep, you guessed it: the cuties known as hummingbirds.
The National Wildlife Federation says that hummingbirds are the world's tiniest birds, weighing about the same as a penny. Their wings can beat at an astounding 15-80 times per second, and they can travel up to 23 miles per day according to Hummingbird Central.
The site goes on to say that in preparation for the winter months, these precious little hummingbirds typically migrate south to Central America and Mexico. When the weather begins to warm up again, they then return to their breeding grounds as early as February for some locations, and a little later on for colder areas like New England.
Thanks to Hummingbird Central, we can view an interactive map that shows where hummingbirds are being spotted across the country, based on reports submitted by viewers.
Here's an image of what the map looks like as of April 11, 2022.
Not only are the map's markers color-coded to indicate different types of hummingbirds, but clicking on each one shows you the individual report sent in for that bird.
It seems that overwhelming majority of hummingbird sightings are still in the south at the moment. That said, some of these birds have indeed returned back to New England, and more are sure to follow. A handful have been seen in Connecticut and Massachusetts, so it's only a matter of time before more arrive and find their way into New Hampshire and Maine.
Here's a close-up image of what the map looks like for our region.
Want to give these birds a hospitable welcome after their long travels? Perhaps you can set up a hummingbird feeder with some delicious nectar for them to enjoy. Hummingbird Central provides more information on how to do so here.
Speaking of warmer days ahead, take a look at this elegant mansion on New Hampshire's Lake Winnipesaukee. Imagine retiring to this place at night after spending a fun-filled summer day on the lake.