This is not about the facts of life. More about a lesson in life. The care and feeding of one of natures smallest and most amazing creatures - the hummingbird.
"He chase everyone that come close," said Joe Kalinisan, hummingbird feeder. "He's a bully. Look at what they coming in real good now."
From April to the first frost, you will find Joe and Barbara Kalinisan looking out the rear window of their home in Munford, Tenn., watching as hundreds of hummingbirds take in the sugar and water supplied by this caring couple.
Hummingbirds are an incredible creature. They fly from as far south as Mexico and Central America to as far north as Alaska and Canada. Along the way they pick out feeding stops to fuel up before continuing their journey.
Their diet consists of nectar, from flowers or feeders. They also dine on insects and spiders. Sometimes they dine with insects like this bumble bee. A dangerous dining companion, bees and other stinging insects are the only real threats to these beautiful birds.
Joe and Barbara moved to Munford in 1979 after Joe retired from the Navy. A couple of years later Barbara put out the first hummingbird feeder.
"Just put your feeder out and treat them with kindness and they will come. They will really come," Barbara said. "That's one of my favorite parts about them is the sounds they make. The males come in first they come in real early in spring. They start marking their territory then when the females come they start bringing the females in to their favorite territory."
This being one of their favorite territories. Joe and Barbara mix more than 20 pounds of sugar into water once a week for their little friends; filling up 18 feeders scattered around their back yard.
"I made the mistake one time of taking them all down at same time to fill and they were so angry," Barbara said. "So now I leave at least two up while filling the others. I say angry they were flustered could not understand that. It's not absolutely necessary to put color in your water to attract the hummingbirds but the more red you have around your feeder and on them, the more you will attract."
You should be warned: the care and feeding of hummingbirds is habit forming. For Joe and Barbara it's a relationship has been going on for more than 30 years with no end in sight.
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