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HYB: Pollination vectors

From: James Brooks
I would be interested in any observations any of you might make in the garden this summer of hummingbirds (or possibly orioles) engaged in nectar gathering (and thereby pollination) from iris. I would be particularly interested in the following supplemental data:
1. type or variety of iris visited (color and fragrance are what I'm looking for in variety, but also type, i.e. tall bearded vs. Louisiana is important).
2. species of bird if possible (east coasters have only the ruby-throated hummingbird, but for those in the west or southwest, any descriptive info would be interesting but not required).
3. Whether or not you have a sugar-water hummingbird feeder hanging in your garden.
The genus iris is predominately a Eurasian temperate zone flower, presumably dependent on the Eurasian honeybee (Apis mellifera) as a pollination vector. Hummingbirds and icterine orioles only exist in the Americas (although sunbirds and oriolus orioles are in some parts of the native range), so I'm interested in seeing whether our hummers have adapted to this nectar source that does not normally show reds - the hummer's most attractive color.
I already have a theory, but no data. I am particularly interested in observations from you Louisiana growers because I'm intrigued that we have red in I. fulva, an American native species within the hummingbird's range. In the World of Iris, oriole damage is mentioned as a garden pest within the flower's native range, which means orioles may also be pollination vectors.

Eventually I knew my interest in ornithology would cross-pollinate into iris.

James Brooks
Jonesborough, TN
Persimmon Katz
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> " < html wizard and frog stalker

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