Male Andean hillstar hummingbird (Oreotrochilus estella) and Puya raimondii plant
The puya raimondii flower spike is often 9-10m high and contains more than 3,000 flowers and 6,000,000 seeds. The flowers provide a huge supply of nectar for hummingbirds (plus other bird species and insects) as well as a warm place for them to sleep during the icy Andean nights. The Andean hillstar is found from Ecuador south to northern Argentina and Chile at altitudes between 3400-4600m. It reduces its metabolic rate dramatically (as if hibernating) to survive the bitter winter nights at high altitude. Local names: picaflor serrano grande, picaflor de la puna.
Photograph ID: Raimondii2013D101
Photo © James Brunker, Magical Andes Photography. To purchase a licence please select an option using the Rights-Managed reproduction licence button above, for more details about licencing please visit: https://www.magicalandes.com/image-licencing
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Photograph size: 12.9 Mpixels (36.9 MB uncompressed) - 4400x2933 pixels (14.6x9.7 in / 37.3x24.8 cm at 300 ppi)