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Posts Tagged ‘colibrí’

Spring has sprung in the valley of Oaxaca and that means the hottest and driest months are upon us. Despite conventional wisdom, the temperatures actually cool down a little in the summer, when the afternoon/evening rains come. I confess, this time of year, when the thermometer hovers around 90º (Fahrenheit), by early afternoon my energy is sapped and motivation melts away. Hence, blog posts are few and far between. However, today is a little cooler and my blog’s namesake inspired me to let my fingers not just hover over keyboard, but actually type!

Colibríes in murals seen on walls around the city…

Artist: Marcos Lucero
Artist unknown

A few of the colibríes seen in the art and artesanía in my Casita Colibrí home…

Watercolor by Estefani Hernández
Hand-painted pillow by Pilar Miranda
Tin hummingbird purchased at MARO

Speaking of hovering, a little information from the book, Colibríes de México y Norteamérica/ Hummingbirds of México and North America to go along with the pretty pictures:

Hummingbirds are noted for their incredible ability to fly. They can hover suspended in the air and can fly in any direction, even sideways and backwards, allowing them to reach their food anywhere. Their powerful chest muscles are extremely developed (they can account for around 30% of their body mass) and this allows them to beat their wings very rapidly, from an incredible 80 wing beats per second, up to a staggering 200 wing beats per second when performing certain maneuvers during courtship. Their muscles also allow them to reach amazing speeds, ranging from 50 to 95 km/hr when diving in flight during courtship.

A .pdf of the book is free to download from the above link.

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In Mexico, the hummingbird (colibrí) is known as the protector of warriors and messenger of the gods — two of the most revered roles in indigenous cosmology. How lucky I am that several of the varieties seen on the poster below continue to capture my attention and fill my heart with joy as they flit from tree to fence to fountain for a bath and zigzag across my terrace playing their version of tag and king of the hill.

Hummingbirds of Mexico and North America poster

Muchisimas gracias to my friend K for the link to this poster from CONABIO (National Commission for Biodiversity). In addition, if these tiny creatures also captivate you, a PDF of the CONABIO book, Colibríes de México y Norte América / Hummingbirds of México and North America is available online with text in both Spanish and English (click title link).

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Luís interrupted his Sisyphusean task of sweeping the African tulip tree blossoms off the driveway this morning, to come upstairs to show me this baby hummingbird sitting on the driveway.

Baby hummingbird on drivewayThere’s a lot of hummingbird action going on in the African tulip tree above and we decided it was best to leave baby alone and hope mom flies down to give it some help.

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Wednesday in the Mixteca

cement block building "Fabrica Marmol" "El Colibrí"

How could I resist?  Photo, yes.  Dining, no.  We had already eaten and so were not tempted to try Restaurant El Colibrí, across the street.  However, still scratching my head about the relationship between marble (marmol) and hummingbird (colibrí).

Concrete block building with sign, Fabrica Marmol, El Colibrí

This librarian couldn’t resist doing a little research.  According to Wikipedia, the hummingbird in Aztec culture was, “emblematic for their vigor, energy, and propensity to do work along with their sharp beaks that mimic instruments of weaponry, bloodletting, penetration, and intimacy.”  Hmmm…  the tools and strength needed by a marble mason.  Now, it’s beginning to make sense.

(Thanks Chris for stopping so I could take the above photos.)

And now a song from the Mixteca, “Chikirriyó’i” (“El Colibrí”) (The Hummingbird):

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Just before this afternoon’s rains came, Casita Colibrí’s first African tulip tree blossom of the season.Orange red African tulip tree blossom .

And that means, colibríes (hummingbirds) won’t be far behind!

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I knew it was going to be a good day when a colibrí greeted me on an early morning stroll up to the weekly organic market.

Black outline of a hummingbird on a white wall.

There were other critters and creatures in plain sight…

Multicolored creature painted on terracotta wall

and peering out from their hiding places.

Multicolored creature painted on wall in back; with bougainvillea in foreground

However, you must proceed with caution because, most dangerous of all…

Pile of torn up street rubble in street, with red sign:  Precaución - Hombres Trabajando

there are men at work!

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