Area readers share their first spring hummingbird visits

Photo by Bryan Stevens • Ruby-throated hummingbirds such as this male are returning to the region.

I thought I’d give a timely progress report. I wrote recently about a vision problem that has afflicted my left eye. During my most recent visit to my doctor, he noticed the same improvement that I had already been gradually detecting.

He was surprised and admitted he had not expected any improvement. He also noted, perhaps jokingly, that the better vision was not due to anything he had done or prescribed. I contemplated asking, jokingly, if that meant I shouldn’t have to pay for the multiple visits.

Without any more undue digression, I wrote back in February that my goal was to be able to see a ruby-throated hummingbird once they returned in April.
I saw my hope fulfilled when I had a brief glimpse of one on Sunday, April 9, but it was one of those speedy “blink-and-you-missed-it” affairs.
On the next evening. my mom and I watched a male ruby-throated hummingbird feeding at one of her feeders.

Using binoculars, I was able to see the bird fairly clearly. The image is still soft around the edges, but I clearly saw the gleaming red throat when the light hit just right.
By the way, mom had already seen two hummingbirds dueling around her feeders, but that evening’s visitor was solo. We also watched Northern cardinals, Eastern towhees, red-winged blackbirds, song sparrows, and white-throated sparrows, Carolina chickadees, tufted titmice and Carolina wrens.
I’m not where I want to be in regards to having an “eagle eye” for birding, but I’m thankful to have reached this stage and remain optimistic improvement will continue.

Photo by Bryan Stevens • A ruby-throated hummingbird lifts its wings to shake water droplets off its back.

In the meantime, readers continue to share their own first hummingbird sightings of spring.

“I had my first hummingbird April 18 at 6:58 p.m. in Richlands, Virginia,” wrote Helen Whited.
She also shared some other exciting spring sightings.
She reported that she has already seen a rose -breasted grosbeak and a Baltimore oriole.

“I had one ruby-throated hummingbird this past week,” Jeri Layne wrote to me on April 19. “It stopped at the feeder and I haven’t seen any since. Usually I have several by now.”
I saw my first hummers in Roan Mountain April 11,” wrote Cherie Beth. “They were the male ruby-throats.”
“Our first little guy showed up April 15 at 4:30 p.m. here in Stoney Creek near Elizabethton, Tennessee,“ wrote Mary Beierle. “I’m so excited! Can’t wait for a mate to show up also.”
“Saw first ruby-throated humming bird on April 8 at 11 a.m. in Fancy Farm, Kentucky,” wrote Olif Perkins.
Felicia Mitchell in Emory, Virginia, messaged me on Facebook. “First hummingbird spotted at feeder at 6:58 p.m. on April 14,” she wrote.
Rhonda and Randal Eller their first sighting of a male hummingbird on April 19 at their home on the outskirts of Chilhowie, Virginia.
Cheri Miller in Roan Mountain, Tennessee, shared that she saw her first spring hummingbird on April 16.
Nancy Vernon in Bristol, Tennessee, shared that she saw her first hummingbirds (three of them) on April 17. She reported she had only put out the feeder the day before the sightings took place.
Janice Frasier Martin reported her first hummer on April 20. Formerly of Bristol, Tennessee, Janice now lives in Shepherdsville, Kentucky.
Hummingbirds and other migrants are arriving daily. To share sightings, ask questions or make comments, email me at

Photo by Bryan Stevens • Despite a perceived disadvantage of size, ruby-throated hummingbirds are quite capable of thriving in a giant world.

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