Learn about hummingbirds at Aug. 15 MDC virtual event

News from the region
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CAPE GIRARDEAU, Mo.Ruby-throated hummingbirds winter in southern Mexico and Central America. From Missouri, that’s a long trip for a little bird.

People can learn more about the fall migration hummingbirds make at the Missouri Department of Conservation’s (MDC) free virtual program “A Hummingbird’s Journey South.” This online program will be from 10-11 a.m. on Aug. 15 and is being put on by the staff of MDC’s Cape Girardeau Conservation Nature Center. This program is designed for all ages. People can register for this program at:


In the fall, some migrating hummingbirds follow land-based routes to their winter destinations, but others take a more remarkable route. Based on sightings and tagging data, it’s presumed some hummingbirds fly nonstop across the Gulf of Mexico from the Gulf Coast of the U.S. to winter homes in Central America. This is a continuous flight of more than 20 hours and approximately 500 miles.

If all this talk of long flights has urged you to give your local hummingbirds some food for the road, you’re in luck. Feeding hummingbirds involves a simple set-up and the ingredients to put in your feeder – four parts water to one part sugar – is very affordable. In the weeks ahead, hummingbirds are feeding ravenously to store up energy for fall migration. Local hummingbird numbers will soon swelled by migrating hummingbirds coming in from the north that are just as hungry. The bottom line to all this is that, from mid-August into October, there will be a lot of action at Missouri’s hummingbird feeders. Jamie Koehler, the assistant manager of MDC’s Cape Girardeau Conservation Nature Center, will have information on hummingbird migration and helpful tips on feeding hummingbirds.

Though this program is free, registration is required to participate using the link above. Registrants must provide an e-mail, so a program link can be sent to them. This program will include a chat-based question-and-answer period where participants can interact with the presenters.

Staff at MDC facilities across the state are holding virtual programs. A listing of these programs can be found at mdc.mo.gov/regions.