Sunday at 2: Surprising Secrets of Sleeping Hummingbirds
Sunday at 2: Surprising Secrets of Sleeping Hummingbirds with Anusha Shankar, PhD Candidate at Stony Brook University. Hummingbirds are tiny, and they use energy really quickly. How do they balance their energy during the day? And how do they avoid running through all their energy at night- when they can’t access high-energy nectar? They use a strategy called torpor– a nighttime state like hibernation- to save a ton of energy. But torpor comes with a cost- a torpid hummingbird is vulnerable to being eaten by predators, and there is always the risk that it might not have enough energy to come out of torpor and see another sunrise. We have recently discovered that they might be able to use an in-between strategy to get the best of both worlds. Come find out more about hummingbirds and their amazing energy-saving ways! Anusha Shankar is a National Geographic Explorer and a PhD candidate at Stony Brook University, NY who studies how hummingbirds balance their daily energetic needs. She is especially fascinated by hummingbirds’ strategy of entering a torpid state at night to save energy. She is now using infrared video to capture the secret nightlife of hummingbirds (they “snore” and pee a lot and preen in their sleep!). Her field work takes her mostly to the mountains of Ecuador and the deserts of Arizona to study these hummingbirds. She plans to work longer-term in the tropics, with a home base in India. The Long Pond Greenbelt Nature Center is at 1061 Bridgehampton/Sag Harbor Turnpike and is handicap accessible. All Sundays at Two events are free and open to the public. Refreshments are served.