Make us your home page

Hummingbird Festival set for Pioneer Florida Museum

There's something intriguing about the hummingbird. Perhaps it's the size of the miniature flier that can weigh as little as a Lincoln penny. Maybe it's the bird's seemingly frantic flight, fueled by a voracious appetite and accented by humming wings that can beat 200 times per second during courtship flights. Or perhaps it's the impressive fortitude that carries some migrating species on journeys from Florida to Canada, across the Gulf of Mexico or from Tallahassee to Alaska, where the orange-colored Rufous Hummingbird regularly breeds during milder seasons.

People are captivated by hummingbirds for all sorts of reasons, said expert birder Andy Wraithmell, who works as an information specialist for the Great Florida Birding and Wildlife Trail.

"They are really quite beautiful," he said. "I think a lot of people like them because they are so unique and they seem to be kind of inquisitive."

And there's a brashness about the tiny birds that can be territorial in a big way.

"I often say if hummingbirds were the size of eagles we'd be in trouble. I've seen them get into it. They have dogfights. They'll chase other birds and chase each other," Wraithmell said, adding that hummingbirds can be none too shy when it comes to demanding a handout from humans. "I wish I had a dollar for each person who has told me that the hummingbirds come right up to their window when the feeder needs changing."

Avid birder Bev Hansen has been watching the patterns of transient and nesting species for close to 27 years now, ever since she and her husband, Al, settled in Spring Hill and joined the Hernando Audubon Society as a way to meet new people.

The birds ended up being a delightful study.

"All of the sudden you have this burst of color in front of you, then just as suddenly, it's gone," she said, adding that, because of their high metabolism, hummingbirds eat about six times every hour.

Hansen, who volunteers regularly at Chinsegut Conservation Center in Brooksville, will share her expansive knowledge about the habits of these tiny fliers at the Hummingbird Festival held on Saturday at the Pioneer Florida Museum in Dade City.

The Hummingbird Festival is the last gala of the museum's special event season and is expected to bring some 300 to 600 visitors to hear local speakers talk about hummingbirds, butterflies, native plants or learn about the days of old while touring the museum grounds.

Other activities held throughout the day include "Sacred Harp Singing" in the museum's church and entertainment by local bluegrass musicians the Barking Dogs. Children will have the opportunity to build a bluebird box, and the gift shop will be stocked with hummingbird and garden gifts. There also will be arts and crafters, old-time craft demonstrations and Florida native plant sales.

Michele Miller can be reached at [email protected]

This article has been revised to reflect the following correction: Bev Hansen will speak at the Hummingbird Festival on Saturday at the Pioneer Florida Museum. Her name was misspelled in the original version of this article.

>>if you go

Hummingbird Festival

When: 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. Saturday.

Where: Pioneer Florida Museum, 15602 Pioneer Museum Road, Dade City. (352) 567-0328

Cost: Admission is $8 for adults, $6 for seniors and $4 for students. Children under 5 are free.

Other: No coolers or pets, although service animals are welcome. The museum offers free parking and handicap accessibility.

For information: Go to

Hummingbird Festival set for Pioneer Florida Museum 05/14/13 [Last modified: Wednesday, May 15, 2013 10:26am]
Photo reprints | Article reprints

© 2017 Tampa Bay Times


Join the discussion: Click to view comments, add yours

  1. Seminole Heights restaurants face struggles amid killings, post-Irma

    Food & Dining

    TAMPA — The neighborhood's hip circle of popular, well-regarded restaurants is feeling the squeeze in the wake of a recent killing spree. And the timing is rough.

    Ella’s Americana Folk Art Cafe has been taking precautions in light of the Seminole Heights killings: keeping the lights on all night and having employees walk to their cars in groups.
  2. Josbite goes all out, gets results with annual musical, 'The Threepenny Opera'


    TAMPA — As the house lights dimmed for the second act, burglars and pickpockets, prostitutes and scam artists weaved between the little tables of the Jaeb Theater, warning customers they'd best wind down their talking and silence their phones. This was done with a wink but the point was made. This is elitism …

    Miscreants in Jobsite Theater's The Threepenny Opera, which runs through Nov. 12, include (from left) Amy E. Gray, Jonathan Harrison, Giselle Muise, Chris Jackson, Fo'i Meleah, and Derrick Phillips. Courtesy of Jobsite Theater.
  3. Top things to do in Tampa Bay for Oct. 24


    On Your Feet: The Broadway musical follows the true story of Emilio and Gloria Estefan's journey as Cuban immigrants coming to America to becoming pop-crossover sensation Miami Sound Machine. 7:30 p.m., Carol Morsani Hall at the Straz Center for the Performing Arts, 1010 N MacInnes Place, Tampa. $45 and up. (813) …

    Alma Cuervo (far left), an Academy of the Holy Names graduate, stars in the upcoming production of "On Your Feet" at the Straz Center for the Performing Arts on Tuesday (Oct. 24). Also pictured, Claudia Yanez (as Rebecca), Christie Prades (as Gloria) and Nancy Ticotin (as Gloria Fajardo). Photo by Matthew Murphy
  4. Hip-hop artist looks to deliver music, monologues with one-woman show


    Tampa hip-hop artist and actress Dynasty takes her career into a new direction Saturday at Stageworks Theatre with her first one-woman show: A Star in Life's Clothing : Life. Love. Language. Lyrics.

    Hip-hop artist and actress Dynasty will present a one-woman show Saturday (Oct. 28) at Stageworks Theatre. Photo courtesy of @JoeyClayStudio.
  5. With volunteers as its heartbeat, annual Hillsborough County Fair grows larger


    DOVER — There's nothing else in the Tampa Bay community quite like the Hillsborough County Fair.

    Retired Tampa police officer Larry Henderson of Seffner sharpens a hewing ax used for squaring wood in the Hometown Hillsborough historical area of the fair. Beside him is a small sampling of the more than 7,000 tools he’s collected over the years.