Affordable Luxury Yerette The Secret Hummingbird House in Trinidad

Published on March 26th, 2013 | by Charu Suri

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Yerette: The Brilliant Secret Hummingbird House in Trinidad

Our car struggled to get up the Maracas Valley mountain. The roads were steep and even our experienced driver had to press his accelerator twice as hard.

One we arrived at our destination, I felt puzzled. Surely this was someone’s home?

Indeed, it was, but it was alive with the colors, sounds and brilliant colors of some of the rarest species of hummingbirds on the planet. We saw what could have been hundreds of them dart and swoop over the flowers, and towards the dozens of sugar water feeders that hung outside.

“All this wasn’t planned,” says Theo Ferguson humbly about his spacious white house, which played host to over 300 hummingbirds that flitted, swooped, darted and drank from the flowers and generous sugar water feeders. As he spoke, one Tufted Coquette whizzed past like a champion ballerina, drinking from one of the feeders.

“It was a grand accident. When I decided to let the hummingbirds into my life and share it with the world, it all changed.” Theo’s house, Yerette, Home to the Hummingbird, is so hush hush that very few people know about it, and the road to access it is narrow and steep. It sits high in Maracas Valley and visitors can only view the precious hummingbirds via appointment, available thrice daily. Hummingbirds typically drink nectar from the flowers, of which there are plenty around Theo’s house. He also grows some of the finest cottonwood trees in Trinidad. On a clear day you can see the peak of El Tucheche, the second highest mountain in Trinidad, in the distance.

Yerette The Secret Hummingbird House in Trinidad

A Black Throated Mango whizzes by, looking very much like a ballerina

Yerette The Secret Hummingbird House in Trinidad

Hummingbird House in Trinidad Yerette

Theo did fall into this beautiful profession by accident: a photographer by avocation, he decided to challenge his skills by taking shots of the bird most difficult to photograph (the hummingbird’s wings beat hundreds of times per second). And then he realized he had something really special when he started attracting rare species, and 16 of the hummingbird species known to man (there is another hummingbird variety found only in Tobago).

The name “Yerette” is American Indian for the hummingbird, and Theo says that the Trinidad is the land of the hummingbird. Amerindians viewed the birds as sacred, and representing the souls of their dead  ancestors.  As Theo spoke, dozens of hummingbirds, including the white-necked Jacobin and the rarely sighted Ruby Topaz and Tufted Coquette, flapped their tiny, busy wings and we heard a beautiful, constant buzz.

A visit to Yerette is by appointment only, and costs $25 per person. There are three tours daily, and the cost of admission also includes a light snack and coffee/teas. Theo serves a generous salad, sorrel juice and delicious local callaloo soup for refreshments.

Call 868 663 2623 or email hello@yerette.com to make an appointment because no walk ins are accepted.

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10 Responses to Yerette: The Brilliant Secret Hummingbird House in Trinidad

  1. Lorenzo says:

    Wow, I had no idea of how special these creatures were to the Amerindians. If you’re ever in Costa Rica, check out La Paz Waterfall Gardens.

  2. Jam @icoSnap says:

    Humming birds! They look so cute. I’ve only seen them once in my life.

  3. Larry Khan says:

    My family visited Yerette in February 2012 and it was a magical experience! However apart from the mesmerizing vision of hundreds of hummingbirds flying inches away from our heads, the icing on the cake was the warm hospitality of the very knowledgeable hosts – Gloria and Theo Ferguson I highly recommend the experience! Since that visit, we set up a feeder in our own yard and after a few months of no hummingbirds, we now have 4 species feeding everyday but not anything remotely close to what we experienced at Yerette.

    To the author, please allow me to make a small correction to the caption of the first photo. The bird is not a Tufted Coquette but in fact, it’s a female Black Throated Mango.

  4. Wow, what an awesome discovery! Thanks for sharing :) Hummingbirds are one of my favorite creatures and I love the challenge of trying to photograph them. I hope one day I visit Trinidad again and get to see this amazing place!

  5. Hogga says:

    they are such pretty birds

  6. RG says:

    Hi,
    I live here and I still have not been able to visit Yerette. I am still saving to purchase a better camera so that I can savor that moment in Maracas. A nice place to visit for you nature loves is the Wildfoul Trust located in the middle of the Oil Refinery . Google it and enjoy it. (no steep hills) You also need to make an appointment.
    Cheers

    • Charu Suri says:

      Wow, so wonderful that you live in Trinidad. Theo Ferguson definitely needs an appointment but the visits are magical. Yes, get a good camera for sure but you can also purchase Theo’s photos on location. Thanks for the tip about the Wildfoul Trust!

  7. samuel says:

    This is a an excellent recommendation. Can you book a visit month’s in advance?

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