Hummingbird Migration Update: March 19, 1998
Latest Migration Data
Prepare for Landing
Suggestions for Analyzing Hummingbird Migration Data
Here are some ways you can use the migration data you'll find in each report:
1. Plot today's sightings on a map of North America. We suggest using color-coded stickers, with a different color to represent each 2 week time period.
2. Record the dates hummingbirds have been reported at each location. What patterns do you see? Based on these sightings, can you identify waves of migrants moving in certain directions?
3. How do the migrations of the 2 hummingbird species compare? In what ways are they similar, and how are they different?
4. Which ruby-throated hummingbirds do you think might have CROSSED the Gulf of Mexico? Which do you think might have flown AROUND the Gulf of Mexico? Where do you suspect hummers may have over-wintered this year?
5. What can you say about the temperatures in those states where hummers were spotted in late February? In March? What are the daily high, low and average temperatures in these states now?
6. During the 2 weeks between migration updates, collect daily weather maps from your newspaper (or download weather maps from the WWW). Pay careful attention to temperatures and weather conditions in those regions where hummers have already appeared.
7. Predict how far north each species of hummingbird will have traveled by our next update. Make a list of the states and provinces which you think hummingbirds will have reached by then.
Non-stop Flights Now Departing
As shown on this range map, ruby-throated hummingbirds spend the winter in north-central Mexico, through Central America, and as far south as central Costa Rica.
Whey they take off they must cross the open ocean--unable to stop, drink, eat or rest until they reach the other side. For as many as 500 miles they travel through what are the riskiest hours of their lives.(Depending on their destination, some individuals probably travel up the coast. See map.)
How Much Does a Hummingbird Weigh?
Perhaps hummingbirds' tiny size is what makes interest in them so large. The ruby-throat's nest is not much bigger than a ping-pong ball, its eggs are the size of jelly beans, and it weighs only 1/10th of an ounce. It's hard to imagine how light they actually are!
(To respond to this Challenge Question
please follow the instructions at the end of this report.)
Unpave the Way for Hummingbirds
Get ready for hungry hummingbirds! In addition to tracking their migration this spring, we hope you'll help hummingbirds along the way by creating habitat for them. Many helpful people and resources can be accessed through this WWW site. When your habitat project is complete, report back to Journey North. We'll add your site our "Unpave the Way for Wildlife" map, showing where you've helped make life better for the wildlife that shares your home.
How to Respond to Today's Challenge Questions
IMPORTANT: Please answer ONLY ONE question in EACH e-mail message.
1. Address an e-mail message to: firstname.lastname@example.org
The Next Hummingbird Migration Update Will be Posted on April 2, 1998