Hummingbird returns every year to visit Georgia man who nursed him back to health

GROVETOWN, Ga. – A Georgia man welcomed back an old friend—a hummingbird he helped nurse back to health four years ago.

Mike Cardenaz says the hummingbird, nicknamed “Buzz,” migrates south every year and always finds his way back around this time of the year.

The former SWAT officer may not look like a guy who loves animals, but he told WRDW that people call him “Dr. Doolittle” because of his fondness for creatures great and small.

The flowers on the porch at his home in Grovetown attract hummingbirds. Four years ago, he found one in need of help.

“Several of his feathers in his wings were broken off and he couldn't take flight,” Cardenaz said.

Cardenaz provided Buzz with a safe place to heal and nursed him back to health with Pedialyte and sugar.

“I had to wait until he molted and regrew new wings. That was eight weeks. And he became a part of the family,” Cardenaz said.

Buzz regained his strength and finally took off for the winter. He’s come back to visit for the last four years. Cardenaz was a little concerned—Buzz was a week or two later than normal this time.

“I was kind of worried about him and I was on the front porch, sweeping off the front porch and I felt something zoom around my head. I stood on the front porch, put my hand out, and he landed on my hand,” he said.

How can he be sure it’s the same hummingbird?

It’s pretty simple, according to Cardenaz.

“Random hummingbirds don't land in your hand.”