Posted on October 3, 2012 by Bob Berwyn
Summer starts …
A female broad-tailed hummingbird perches on a pine branch near Meadow Creek in Frisco.
FRISCO — June was a brutal month in some parts of Colorado, with wildfires blazing on the Front Range and the realization that the state was going into the worst drought since 2002. But in the high country, it’s always one of the driest months of the year, and summer-like temperatures made for pleasant days, though local officials were on razor’s edge over the potential for a serious wildfire. All eyes were on the weather maps in hopes of an early monsoon, while trees and plants started to dry out, or in some cases, never really green up. But summer is summer, life goes on and nature is resilient. (more…)
Filed under: Colorado, Morning photo, photography, Summit County Colorado | Tagged: Dillon Reservoir, hummingbirds, seasons, summer, Summit County Colorado, Summit County photography | Leave a Comment »
Posted on June 1, 2012 by Bob Berwyn
A broad-tailed hummingbird feeds on larkspur. PHOTO COURTESY David Inouye.
The birds might disappear from parts of their range within a few decades
By Bob Berwyn
SUMMIT COUNTY — Broad-tail hummingbirds that migrate to the Colorado high country in the spring may soon find that their arrival is out of synch with key nectar-providing plants they need to sustain themselves during breeding.
Graceful glacier lilies, for example, are one of the first flowers to bloom when the snow melts, but meticulous research at the Rocky Mountain Biological Laboratory near Crested Butte shows they are blooming 17 days earlier than in the 1970s.
The hummingbirds are also migrating a bit earlier, but perhaps not soon enough — by the time they arrive, many of the nectar-laden plants have withered away. Biologists calculate that, if current trends continue, in two decades the hummingbirds will miss the first flowers entirely. (more…)
Filed under: biodiversity, climate and weather, Environment, global warming | Tagged: Broad-tailed Hummingbird, climate change, global warming, hummingbirds, phenology, Rocky Mountain Biological Laboratory | 2 Comments »
Posted on June 22, 2011 by Jenney Coberly
Changes have implications for pollinators like bees and hummingbirds
A bumblebee in the fireweed. PHOTO BY BOB BERWYN.
By Summit Voice
SUMMIT COUNTY — As the spring and summer become warmer and drier in the high altitudes of the southern Rocky Mountains, the wildfower season is getting shorter, with a fall-off in flowering in mid-season.
That could have serious consequences for the entire ecosystem, with a cascading effect on pollinators like insect and bats, according to a study published recently in the Journal of Ecology.
“Shifts in flowering in mountain meadows could in turn affect the resources available to pollinators like bees,” said David Inouye, of the University of Maryland. Inouye and his colleagues found that such changes could become more common as climate change progresses. The research was funded by the National Science Foundation.
Filed under: climate and weather, Colorado, Environment, global warming, plants and flowers, seasons | Tagged: alpine ecoystem climate change impacts, bumblebees, climate change, Environment, global warming, hummingbirds, Pollination, Summit County News, wildfiowers, wildflowers | 1 Comment »