Hummingbird with Indian Paintbrush

I was admiring some Indian Paintbrush (Castilleja coccinea) that’s growing in Buffalo Ridge Prairie, when a hummingbird buzzed in and started drinking nectar from the flowers. Indian Paintbrush is a perfect hummingbird flower – hummingbirds are attracted to red, and they can reach to the bottom of the long narrow throats of the flowers with their slender bills.

Here’s a closeup of an Indian Paintbrush flower.

The bright red actually comes from modified leaves, not from the flower. The flowers are the tiny green tubes – with red rims – that stick out from the stalk between the red leaves.