At least three of the hummingbirds at Mystic Mountain cannot be found outside of Jamaica – including the Western Streamertail, Jamaica’s national bird. Endemic to Western Jamaica, this bold yellow-green and black feathered hummingbird is also known as the ‘Doctor Bird’ because the piercing motion it uses to eat nectar from flowers resembles the motion a doctor uses to give an injection.
Also found at Mystic Mountain are the Vervain Hummingbird, also known as ‘Little Doctor Bird’, which is the second smallest bird in the world at approximately 2.5 inches in total length; and the Jamaican Mango, a shimmering black-feathered hummingbird.
The range of hummingbird-attracting plants include the fast-growing passion flower vine, which boasts stunningly detailed purple blooms that are the optimal size and shape for pollination by hummingbirds; the cigar plant, an evergreen shrub that produces small, tubular, bright red to orange flowers a favourite colour of hummingbirds; and the pepper hibiscus, a tree-like plant with red flowers that do not open fully, attracting hummingbirds and butterflies. Other hummingbird specific plants in the hummingbird garden include the fire spike, powder puff or red tassel tree, China hat and shrimp plant.
The garden is also an educational experience with interpretive signage throughout the garden paths that explain the history of hummingbirds across cultures, the different types of hummingbirds to be seen at Mystic Mountain Rainforest Adventures and how to attract and feed hummingbirds in a home garden.