• Children's Choice Panda Award Finalist at Wildscreen, Bristol, England • BEST of Category - INDEPENDENT, Merit Award for Storytelling, Merit Award for Educational Value, Merit Award for Animal Behavior and Merit Award for Backyard Nature at the 33rd International Wildlife Film Festival, Missoula, Montana • Special Jury Award at Matsalu International Nature Film Festival, Estonia • Official Selection of Blue Planet Film Fest, Santa Monica, California
"Sometimes, the smallest thing can change your life..." one of the smallest birds in the world indeed changed the life of New York advertising photographers into the award winning film makers! Documenting the lucky finding of the tiny hummingbird's nest on the clothesline in their new home in Las Vegas, the Carrolls turned the story of Honey, the mother hummingbird and her little chicks into a book and a movie... This award winning film is now available on DVD. This charming nature documentary invites you to witness personal life of hummingbirds. Witness breathtaking moment of Honey laying her eggs and the tiny hatchlings Ray and Zen pecking themselves into a new life...
"I have loved and watched birds all my life, hummingbirds most especially. As soon as I heard about this film, I knew it would be wonderful, but it has exceeded my highest expectations! It brought tears to my eyes. Every aspect of this artistic documentary is perfect. I am so very grateful that you chose to share this intimate experience; what good fortune that your craft has blessed us all in the sharing."
— Sally M. Kayser
"You have to see it to believe it! The best documentation of the event that I have ever seen... bar none!"
— Bob Sargent
The Hummer/Bird Study Group
"I ordered your DVD, "First Flight: A Mother Hummingbird's Story" a few months ago. Although I've read several excellent books on hummingbirds, I've never seen anything like this wonderful DVD. There's just nothing like seeing the close-ups of Honey working on her nest, sitting on her eggs and taking care of little Ray and Zen. I was very taken with her loving care and attention to them. Honey's antics with the cat added a nice bit of humor to the film! I think it's wonderful that she comes back each year, and I do believe it's Honey. Noriko's voice has a wonderful calming tone for narration which I enjoyed listening to. I'm coming back now for the book. Thank you so much for this wonderful gift of a real glimpse of one of God's smallest miracles. I've looked at "my" hummingbirds in a different way this summer."
— Carol Richards
"Your dvd is astonishing in its beauty and intimacy. Because the book is so remarkable, I often give it as a gift. Now to see these characters come to life is a rare thing. The music is just right, and so well done. Wonderful for children or adults, the story inspires anyone who sees it to be more observant of what is around us. Congratulations on this fine accomplishment.
— Linda Valle, Baltimore
"How absolutely beautiful and heartwarming. I just love it. I also bought and read your book but the video just adds that something special. I'm so glad you made it and so glad that I bought it. I will recommend it to everyone interested in hummingbirds."
— Arnette Heidcamp
Author of "A Hummingbird in My House: The Story of Squeak"
"It is absolutely enchanting!!! The photography is unbelievably good. I can't wait to send it to my brother for his birthday! Thanks for filming "First Flight" - it will thrill many many people."
— Dodie Wilcox
"In just a few magical moments, Honey, and a short while later, Ray and Zen captured my heart. You don't need to be an ornithologist or even a bird-watcher to enjoy this film. This unique and inspiring sequence of rare images will bring joy to the entire family who watch it. In fact, it is a truly a film about the importance of motherhood and family... from a very beautiful perspective."
— Gary W. Hall, M.D.
Vice President United States Olympians
"It is a lovely work, well designed and well executed. Noriko's narration is really charming. The hatching sequence is unique."
— Nancy L. Newfield
Author / Hummingbird Bander / Naturalist
"I just watched it, and WOW! I've seen 'em all, and this video gets my highest recommendation. Noriko and Don did the near-impossible, and I'm seriously impressed."
— Lanny Chambers
St. Louis, MO
"Beautiful film. Out standing work. The best hummingbird video I've ever seen."
— Jesse Hendrix
"This enchanting nature documentary follows the dedicated efforts of a tiny black-chinned hummingbird (nicknamed “Honey” by filmmakers Don Carroll and Noriko Carroll) to lay, incubate, and hatch two tiny raisin-sized eggs and raise the fledgling chicks. The film begins with remarkable nest-building close-ups; the soft fiber bird home rests on the Carroll's porch clothesline in Las Vegas. Inventive 360-degree macro shots follow the progress, including egg development, incubation, hatching, feedings, nest defense (including chasing away the Carrolls' cat), and first flight. Honey's protective and attentive mothering is enlivened through Noriko Carroll's informative and humorous narration and rich musical soundtrack. This entertaining film includes a bonus making-of feature. Bird and nature fans will be entranced."
— Carol Holzberg
Booklist (American Library Association)
"One of the finest hummingbird DVD's ever created. You don't simply watch it. you experience it."
— Dr. H. Ross Hawkins
Founder of the Hummingbird Society
"With brilliant artistry and clarity, Don and Noriko Carroll have captured the essence of one female Black-chinned hummingbird’s journey from nest building until the magical moment of flight. Through this documentary, we are welcomed in to witness rare footage of egg laying, hatching and the solitary care of two chicks by their mother, Honey. The music chosen to accompany each scene is beautifully choreographed and compelling. The movie evolves like a sacred dance, one in which all should participate."
— Janiece Ward
El Paso, TX
"Your First Flight DVD is wonderful, particularly as you included the details of the complications of making it. In Dutchess county NY we only have ruby-throated hummers that migrate here and stay from May through September. I only see them at the feeders and flowering bushes, our land is wooded enough I've never seen a hint of a nest. Your DVD fills in the many holes in my experience. Thank you."
— Susan North
"Fascinating, informative and beautifully filmed. As an ornithologist I was delighted to observe the hatching sequence in such detail; truly magical footage. First Flight is a film all ornithologists, students and backyard birders should experience."
— John Klicka, Ph. D.
Curator of Birds at the Marjorie Barrick Museum
University of Nevada Las Vegas
"Just received and watched your beautifully created DVD. What a smart and loving story to connect all hearts and minds to the wonder, power and fragility of life. The narration and videography are excellent. When I was watching the DVD and being drawn into Honey's story, I really felt like I was becoming part of her family. Afterwards I felt that age-old peace and oneness of realizing the universal reality that we really are one with each other and all living things. Plus, the "Making Of" extra with Noriko and Don is a great piece and almost as fascinating as the mother hummingbird's story itself. It will be at the top of our gift buying list for a long time. Thank you and congratulations on an amazing creative achievement!"
— Vince Fiorello
((( Article ))) Las Vegas Review Journal— Aug 22, 2009
HUMMINGBIRDS VIEWED WITH TELESCOPE OF TIME: LV couple spent years photographing birds that nested on their porch
((( Article ))) Las Vegas View News— June 16, 2009
Capturing chicks' first flight Mother hummingbird and offspring are stars of couple's new DVD
((( Review )))National Science Teachers Association Recommends— Sep 8, 2009
by Judy Kraus, Science Teacher
((( Review )))School Library Journal — Aug 25, 2009
by Patricia Ann Owens, Wabash Valley College, Mt. Carmel, IL -- School Library Journal
Black-chinned Hummingbird (Archilochus alexandri)
One of more than a dozen species of breeding hummingbirds within the continental United States, Black-chins are found from southern British Columbia throughout most of the Western United States and Mexico. Mexico is their favorite winter vacation spots.
Black-chins are small, weighing in about 3-3.5 grams. They are slender with a long fairly straight black bill, dull metallic bronze-green feathers on their back. The flanks are glossed with dull metallic green. Only the adult male has elegant purple band on lower throat, that appears black most of the time, but when the light hits the iridescent feathers, they sparkle like precious sapphires... Female is larger than male, chin and throat off-white and often spotted, the breast and belly dull white, dark tail feathers with white tips on the three outer feathers on each side. Juveniles are similar to adult female.
Hanging a feeder with 1:4 ratio of sugar and water, as well as planting nectar rich flowers in a garden helps attracting hummingbirds. In our backyard, lavender and salvia (sage) are their favorites.
If you see a hummingbird picking spider webs in your yard, she will be nesting somewhere near by...