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“Bite-Size Bits of Local, National, and Global History”
Shell in Big Horn County, Wyoming — The American West (Mountains)
 

Hummingbirds

Nature’s Helicopters

 
 
Hummingbirds Marker image. Click for full size.
By Bill Coughlin, July 24, 2015
1. Hummingbirds Marker
Inscription.
Shell Creek nourishes a rich diversity of flowering plants, which in turn attracts tiny winged visitors. Hummingbirds are noted for their uncanny ability to hover in the air like helicopters. By turning their wings upside-down on the backstroke, hummingbirds create a figure-eight motion that holds them stationary in the air. They can also fly forward, backward, up, down, side-to-side, and even upside-down.

Each day these little dynamos eat one and a half times their weight in sugar extracted from wildflowers growing in Shell Canyon. Humans would have to eat the equivalent of 285 pounds of hamburger daily to match the activity level of a hummingbird.

It is difficult to distinguish between the females of the 340 known species; males are easily recognized by varying patterns of bright iridescent colors.

Broad Tailed Hummingbird
This hummingbird closely resembles the Ruby Throated, but his beating wings produce a distinctive rattling sound or trilling whistle. His chin color is bright pink.

Black Chinned Hummingbird
The chin appears deep purple and the bill is much longer than the Ruby Throated hummingbird.

Calliope Hummingbird
His chin is rose-purple in color, interspersed with white, above a nearly white breast. He is the smallest bird in North America and his short bill
Hummingbirds Marker image. Click for full size.
By Bill Coughlin, July 24, 2015
2. Hummingbirds Marker
helps to distinguish him from other hummingbirds.

Rufous Hummingbird
This hummer arrives at Shells Falls following an arduous journey of 3,000 miles from his winter home in southern Mexico. His dominant orange-red color distinguishes him from his cousins.

Ruby Throated Hummingbird
The male is approximately 25% smaller than the female and averages 3 to 4 inches long, and weighs about the same as 2½ paper clips.

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Move Like a Hummingbird

Hold your arms out with thumbs forward, so arms are slightly ahead of shoulders
Swing your arms backwards, while rotating your arms at the shoulders so that thumbs point back.
Repeat the movement, so thumbs again face front as you rotate your arms and bring them forward.
Now – do it 70 times a second.
 
Erected by Bighorn National Forest.
 
Location. 44° 35.201′ N, 107° 36.895′ W. Marker is in Shell, Wyoming, in Big Horn County. Marker is on U.S. 14, on the right when traveling west. Click for map. Marker is located in the Shell Falls Interpretive Site in Bighorn National Forest. Marker is in this post office area: Shell WY 82441, United States of America.
 
Other nearby markers. At least 8 other markers are within 2 miles of this marker, measured as the crow flies. Carving a Course
Markers at the Shell Falls Interpretive Site image. Click for full size.
By Bill Coughlin, July 24, 2015
3. Markers at the Shell Falls Interpretive Site
There are several markers at this location. The Hummingbirds marker can be seen in the background on the left.
(here, next to this marker); Lifeblood of the West (here, next to this marker); Oasis in the Desert (here, next to this marker); A 4,000 Mile Journey (a few steps from this marker); Forming Waterfalls (a few steps from this marker); Shaping a Canyon (a few steps from this marker); Moving Mountains (within shouting distance of this marker); Wildfire! (approx. 1.4 miles away). Click for a list of all markers in Shell.
 
More about this marker. Pictures of different types of hummingbirds appear at the bottom of the marker.
 
Categories. Animals
 
Shell Falls Interpretive Site image. Click for full size.
By Bill Coughlin, July 24, 2015
4. Shell Falls Interpretive Site
Marker is located in the Shell Falls Interpretive Site in Bighorn National Forest.
 
 
Credits. This page originally submitted on , by Bill Coughlin of North Arlington, New Jersey. This page has been viewed 214 times since then and 25 times this year. Photos:   1, 2, 3, 4. submitted on , by Bill Coughlin of North Arlington, New Jersey. This page was last revised on June 16, 2016.
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