South Florida Audubon Society, based in Broward County, fosters conservation through local, regional, national, and global environmental advocacy and activities throughout South Florida focusing on birds, other wildlife and their habitats, for the benefit of humanity and the earth’s biological diversity.
South Florida Audubon Meetings
Join members of the South Florida Audubon Society for monthly meetings from 7:30 to 9 p.m. on the third Thursday of the month from September to April. The location alternates between Fern Forest Nature Center (FF) in Coconut Creek and Anne Kolb Nature Center (AK) in Hollywood. See our Calendar of Events for Meeting Details.
Princeton Press has new publications on birding and nature ranging from The Crossley ID Guide: Raptors to the Illustrated Encyclopedia of Trees. Click here for the spring and summer 2013 titles and click here for the 2012 publications on birds.
Hummingbirds of South Florida
by Alicia Caraballo
It’s difficult for any bird enthusiast not to love hummingbirds. Even though many of us in South Florida have not had the rare opportunity to witness these exceptional marvels of flight, hummingbirds are actually very common in our area. Florida is a home for 11 of the 12 species that winter in North America; and the hummingbird population of over 300 species are only found in the western hemisphere.
As one of the smallest flying birds in the world, most weighing one tenth of an ounce, hummingbirds are named so for their ability to flap their wings about 12-80 times per second, which causes a humming sound. They are the only birds known to fly up, down, left, right, backwards, and even upside down. Most bird lovers admire hummingbirds’ ability to hover, which is done by circling their wings in a figure-8 pattern. These special birds have vibrantly iridescent feathers that most species are named for, but perhaps their most well known characteristic is their long bill, which finds nectar in long flowers.
Besides nectar, hummingbirds are known to eat small insects, tree sap, and pollen. Because of their rapid heart rate (1,260 beats per second) and breathing rate, hummingbirds need to eat very often. In their typical swift style, hummingbirds use their long tongues to lick nectar from flowers up to 13 times per second. However, many species of hummingbirds are now endangered because of habitat loss and destruction. The South Florida Audubon Society is committed to bringing awareness in our community of the hummingbirds’ shrinking territory.
Luckily, hummingbird’s are loved and admired in the U.S, and many gardeners and birders enjoy catching a glimpse of them. They plant flowers that attract the birds and put out feeders so that the hummingbirds can find adequate food for their long migrations. You can help these beautiful birds by putting up a hummingbird feeder or planting flowers that many South Florida visitors can enjoy.
Once you’ve set everything up, keep a look out for these and many more South Florida migratory hummingbirds:
Follow the above links for more information about what to do in the event that you come across an injured wild bird or animal.
Looking for birding opportunities?
Whether you are looking for local or far-away adventures, check our calendar for local, state, USA or world events.
Seeour SFAS calendar for information about Florida Birding Festivals, September through May.
Birding Field Trips
South Florida Audubon Society participates in local field trips as well as special birding events in South Florida from Fall to Spring. For birding hotspots in Broward County click here and for birding festivals in Florida, Birding and Nature Field Trips, see our calendar.
Tropical Audubon Society provides one day and weekend birding field trips farther south. They also maintain a blog on sightings of rare birds in South Florida. Click hereto visit their website.
Audubon Society of the Everglades provides a series of birding field trips. Click here for their calendar of events.
Cornell Lab of Ornithology News
Cornell Lab of Ornithology gathers information on bird distributions and conducts research projects on varied bird populations. They offer citizen science opportunities as well as a wide range of resources.