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Press Release 12-103

Where Have All the Hummingbirds Gone?

Glacier lilies and broad-tailed hummingbirds out of sync

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Image of a glacier lily flower.

Glacier lilies flower within days of snowmelt and are an important nectar resource.

Credit: David Inouye


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Photo of the Rocky Mountain Biological Laboratory in Colorado.

The Rocky Mountain Biological Laboratory in Colorado, where the research took place.

Credit: David Inouye


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Photo of glacier lilies in flower.

As climate warms, glacier lilies flower earlier, with a record early-flowering in 2012.

Credit: David Inouye


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Photo of a male broad-tailed hummingbird, with yellow pollen on its bill.

Male broad-tailed hummingbird, with the yellow pollen on its bill likely from a glacier lily.

Credit: David Inouye


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Photo of a researcher holding a male broad-tailed hummingbird.

Resting briefly in a researcher's hand: a male broad-tailed hummingbird.

Credit: David Inouye


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Photo of a female broad-tailed hummingbird visiting purple larkspur flowers.

Female broad-tailed hummingbird visiting a nectar-containing tall larkspur in summer.

Credit: David Inouye


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