Fort Davis 2015 Hummerfest Kicks Off

Fort Davis 2015 Hummerfest Kicks Off

FORT DAVIS, TX (KWES) - Thursday kicks off the 3rd annual Hummerfest hosted by the Fort Davis Chamber of Commerce.

Experts say they've placed tracking bands on 17,000 hummingbirds in 15 different species in West Texas alone.

Fort Davis is known as the hummingbird capital of Texas. That's because it has more species of hummingbird here than anywhere else in the state. To learn more about these incredible creatures, hundreds have made Fort Davis a destination for the 2015 Hummerfest.

"It's intense. There are field trips, banding sessions, lectures," said Robert Alvarez, Executive Director of the Fort Davis Chamber of Commerce.

Bird lovers and tourists alike are in Fort Davis, learning anything and everything about hummingbirds.

"Mostly Black Chin, and we saw some other hummingbirds. We saw a Rufous Hummingbird," said Barbara Deane, who is visiting from Austin.

Kelly Bryan showed us how researchers track the migration of hummingbirds through a process called banding.

"You put a little band on the leg that has a little five digit number with one letter and you think that would never be seen again, and 99.9% of them are never seen again," said Bryan.

When the birds are re-captured, that's also tracked in the database. Bryan found out some birds banded in West Texas were caught in California, Louisiana, New Mexico, Oklahoma, Colorado and Alaska.

"Nobody has had one caught twice in Alaska, but that bird was. that bird was caught the following year at the same location on June the 24th," said Bryan.

Why do these creatures flock to Fort Davis? The same reason many of us do to be in the mountains.

"It's a once in a lifetime thing to enjoy these tiny little birds that to amazingly big things," said Alvarez.

If you'd like to come out for Friday or Saturday's events, head to the News Links tab where we've posted a full schedule.