A SERVICE OF THE OUTDOOR WIRE DIGITAL NETWORK
WEDNESDAY, AUGUST 8, 2018
On July 6 at 1:20 pm, Bill Hilton Jr. attached a tiny aluminum band to the leg of an adult female Ruby-throated Hummingbird and released her, just as he’s done many times before. Only later that day, while transcribing his field data, did Hilton realize that this hummingbird marked an extraordinary milestone, the 6,000th Ruby-throated Hummingbird Bill has banded at Hilton Pond, his 11-acre property in York, South Carolina. That’s an estimated 43 pounds of banded Ruby-throats, considering that each one weighs about 3.5 grams.
Hilton’s hummingbird banding odyssey began in July 1984, and during the past 35 years his studies have advanced our knowledge about Ruby-throats and his writing has enriched the hummingbird experience for thousands of people. He developed “Hilton’s Rule of Thumb,” which suggests that you probably have three times more hummingbirds at your feeders than you think, at least in hummingbird havens like his.
You can help support Hilton’s research and education programs by contributing to his 2018 summer goal of $1 raised for each of the 6,000 Ruby-throats he’s banded. Send a dollar, or a dollar each for however many hummingbirds you wish to commemorate or underwrite.
For more information, see http://www.hiltonpond.org/ThisWeek180701.html