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Hummingbird Research at Santa Lucía

While we are currently working on several proposals for more scientific research in Santa Lucía, the research of hummingbird - plant interactions continues at full force. More information on the project you can find here: https://www.facebook.com/PollinationNetworks/


One of the plant species that we are looking at is Bomarea pardina of the Alstroemeriaceae family. This is a climbing plant that can typically be found in elevations above 2.000m, in the upper parts of the Santa Lucía reserve. As a climber it of course tries to get up as high into the canopy as possible, but occassionly we find a low hanging individual so that we can take nectar samples and place cameras in order to see which hummingbirds are the potential pollinators. As it is a rather long straight flower it is not surprising to find mainly hummingbird species with a matching bill feeding on its nectar. In Santa Lucía the Brown Inca (Coeligena wilsoni) and the Collared Inca (Coeligena torquata) are the principal suspects.



Preliminary data shows that the nectar isn't awfully rich in sugar, measurements so far have shown an average sugar content of around 10%. It's possible that this still attracts hummingbirds because the inflorescences can hold up to 30 flowers at a time.

The flowers can usually be observed between November and March.

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