THE CLOUD FOREST HUMMINGBIRDS
For thousands of years, human theologians and religious leaders have debated the existence of heaven and what it takes to get there. If you are a hummingbird however, the answer is simple. Heaven is here on earth, and it’s in the Republic of Ecuador.
Hummingbirds are said to be the earth’s second largest family of birds. It is estimated that about 328 species exist worldwide. Ecuador, which is approximately the size of the US state of Colorado, has within its boundaries over 130 of the world’s hummingbird species. In other words, a country with about 0.2% of the earth’s landmass has about 40% of all the hummingbird species. Since these little birds have been known to migrate over 4000 miles over the course of the year, it is obvious, that they have chosen to live in Ecuador because they really like it there.
Given the variety of sizes, shapes and colours, it is easy to see why hummingbirds are known as "flying jewels" and "living rainbows." For many wildlife photographers, they are among the most challenging and most fascinating photography subjects. And capturing their crisp image—in flight as they sip nectar from a colourful blossom—is a peak experience for any wildlife photographer.