“Home!” Yerette – Home of the Hummingbird – Part Five – 2019.

This is the last in a five-part blog, reflecting on a 2019 trip to Trinidad and Tobago.

It was a bittersweet sunrise; knowing my vacation was coming to an end, and I had to wrap my mind around the trip ahead, back to the U.S.

On my last morning home, I had an early morning start. My cousin, McGline swung by and picked me up, he recommended making a quick stop around de “Savannah” where we had some doubles for breakfast, then headed up Maracas Valley, to visit “Yerette” Home of the Hummingbird, a sanctuary hosted by Gloria and Dr. Theo Ferguson.

Nestled within Trinidad’s Maracas Valley, this lush sanctuary is home to a variety of native flora and 14 of Trinidad and Tobago’s 17 species of hummingbirds. The Fergusons’ lush garden, in the shadow of the silk-cotton tree, teems with hundreds of hummingbirds daily.

Having an in-depth discussion with Dr. Theo Ferguson

Trinidad has a deep emotional connection with the hummingbird. There are documents going back to the 1800s describing Trinidad and Tobago as the Land of the Hummingbird. It’s our longest and most used national symbol – the bird is prominently featured on the national flag, on airlines, and on stamps. Amerindians, who were the indigenous people of Trinidad and Tobago, first named the island of Trinidad “Iere” (or “Irie” nowadays), meaning “Land of the Hummingbird”. The hummingbird was a sacred animal to the Amerindians as it was the symbol signifying the soul of their ancestors.

Copper-rumped Hummingbird (Saucerottia tobaci)
 Whitebellied Emerald (Amazilia candida) 
Blue-chinned Sapphire (Chlorestes notata)
White-necked Jacobin (Florisuga mellivora)
“Male” Black-throated Mango (Anthracothorax nigricollis)
“Juvenile” Long-billed Starthroat (Heliomaster longirostris)
Ruby-topaz Hummingbird (Chrysolampis mosquitus)

The Ferguson’s unique arrangement and an assortment of feeders, it is quite impressive. They have essentially transformed their garden and the surrounding yard, into a habitat for migrating hummingbirds. I was lucky to see 10 species, getting decent photographic images of 7 of the 14 species, but it was one of those trips where too much focal length was my ruin – nevertheless, I had a great visit. One I will certainly revisit on my next trip home.

A big thanks to my cousin, McGline – his being there for me, made this and many adventures back home possible.

Until the next adventure. If you would like to be updated when I post new blogs articles, please sign up for my email list @ my blog.

Thanks for stopping by!

3 Comments

  1. Miguel – Thanks for sharing. Very much enjoyed each segment and learned a lot. Ken

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