Hummingbirds have glittering, iridescent colours. They are native to South, Central and North America. When the early Spanish explorers saw them, they called them “Joyas voladoras”, flying jewels.
Hummingbird feeding products with gold star ratings on this page here.
Interesting Information About Hummingbirds
Tochilidae is the family of scientific classification given to these
little birds. This is a Greek word meaning “small bird”. Very
Attracting Hummers is also very easy and will bring hours of pleasure.
As in many other instances in nature, the male Hummer is more brightly
coloured than the female.
This is the case with many of their specie's.
sexes in the Ruby Throated species have metallic green above.
But the male has a brilliant red throat and white collar encircling his neck, which the female lacks.
A Hummer’s normal life span averages from 3 to 5 years.
sources state that some birds have lived as long as 9 to 12 years.
During Hummer mating courtship, the male uses his colourful parts of his body to attract the female.
He swoops back and forth in front of the female catching the light on his throat feathers causing them to flash and glow.
The colour and movement is very attractive to the female.
Hummingbirds Are The Best In Flight!
These little birds could be considered tiny flight machines.
Their weight consists of 30% flight muscles with a covering of feathers.
They are “Smart” flying machines with “lots of heart”.
Their brain is 4.2% and their heart is 2.4% of their body weight, both proportionately the largest in the bird kingdom!
Hummers can rotate each wing in a
circle allowing them to fly in all directions: forward, backward, up,
down, sideways or in one place.
Hummers use spider webs to build their nest giving their baby's home strength & elasticity. Then they eat the spider!
They can also fly upside-down and often
deploy this maneuver when being chased.
Their flight speed is 25 to 30
mph and they can dive at speeds of up to 60 mph.
But they have a weakness.
They have very little strength in their feet.
When in their nest or
perched on a branch, they will use their wings to change position rather
than their feet.
What do These Tiny Birds Eat to Fill their Big
Appetites Besides Nectar?
These little birds will drink flower nectar from a variety of flowers and may visit 1000 flowers per day!
Some people express concern that these little birds might forsake their natural food when presented with Hummer food in a feeder.
But there is no evidence of this.
They seem to go back and forth easily all day between nectar feeders and flowers.
They will snap up the bugs from flowers they visit; from mid-air; and from spider webs, (with the spider too!).
The bugs supply the protein they need to balance their diet.
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Best Nectar Feeders & Accessories
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Important Hummingbird Feeder Accessories
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Not A Voice To Win Contests
The Pavarotti of the bird world, the Hummer will never be.
This species is considered a songbird. But not because of their beautiful singing, because that does not happen. They produce nothing close to the beautiful lilt of other birds.
But they do make interesting sounds none the less. Different types of Hummers make different sounds.
Some make mouse-like chirps, twittering squeaks, “tups” and high pitched zees, delivered adamantly in Hummer fashion!
Although they may not be known for their beautiful vocal sounds they are distinctly recognized for the humming sound produced by their wings. Thus the name!
Do You Need Help With Identification Sometimes?
I am including these great resources here.
They are my favourites and if you live in an area that has multiple types of Hummers then you may need help identifying them.
But I am sure they will come in handy for all backyard birders to help discover all the birds that visit your bird habitat.
Consider Thayer's Birding Software too.
This is an excellent aid for all bird watchers.
I love mine and you can read my review here.
There is a lot to know about Feeding Hummingbirds, find more below & in sidebar at top.
- Hummingbird Food “The Energy Drink” This mixture is a very simple syrup solution, but you need to mix it in proper proportions or risk harming these little birds.
- Hummingbird Plants Produce flowers which are suited for Hummingbird beaks with elongated, bell shaped flowers and if they are wild flowers and not hybrids produce lots of nectar.
- Cleaning Hummingbird Feeders The little Hummingbird is a feisty and fussy diner! If a good maintenance regimen is followed, bird watching in your backyard will be more rewarding.
- Where to Hang Hummingbird Feeders? The when, where & why of Hummingbird feeders in your outdoor space. Facts to ponder when making your decisions about your small bird buffet.
- Hummingbird Feeder Quiz Test your knowledge after reading all the information about feeding the tiniest birds in the world and keep going with other interesting quizzes.
- Hummingbird Feeders are specialized feeders designed to attract a specific little bird that has a unique eating style. Care must be taken to prepare the food safely for these unique birds and feeders maintained properly to prevent disease. Learn more...
About Habitat & Behaviour
- Attracting Hummingbirds
is not that hard. There are ways to make attracting these beautiful
little birds to your backyard easier for hours of enjoyment.
- Hummingbird Feeder Wars You may not be able to stop a dominant bird from protecting it's food source, but you can turn down the effects.
- Hummingbirds’ Migration
is a marvel when you think about the tiniest bird on the planet, flying
thousands of miles each year and not just once but twice. How do they
do it against the wind, inclement weather and find enough food?
- Hummingbird Mating is truly a joy to witness! Their flaming gorgets which attract mates also wins our hearts.
- Hummingbird Habitat is vastly varied, spanning a diverse set of geographic areas. Tiny creatures with mighty spirits!
- Hummingbirds Learn about the Western Hemispheres most interesting bird and the worlds smallest bird. Intriguing is only the beginning.
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- Hummingbird FAQ If you cannot find the answer to your question in this list, then please go to the FAQ, scroll down to the form and ask your question there.