When early Spanish explorers first encountered hummingbirds in the New World, they called them flying jewels. But the hummingbird is more than just beautiful. Its physical capabilities put the toughest human being to shame.
Unlike other birds, a hummingbird can rotate its wings in a circle. It can also hover in one spot; fly up, down, sideways, and even upside down (for short distances); and it is the only bird that can fly backward.
The ruby-throated hummingbird, the only hummingbird species east of Mississippi migrates at least 2,000 miles from its breeding grounds to its wintering grounds. On the way, it crosses the Gulf of Mexico, that’s 500 miles without rest. Not bad for a bird that weighs just an eighth of an ounce and is barely three inches long.
This is usually the only species of hummingbird I see at my deck feeder. I always look forward to seeing these tiny birds. I change the nectar in the feeder daily, especially with the hot temperatures. These birds are very entertaining to watch. How many birds do you see in my photo? If you guessed two, you are correct.
Do you have hummingbirds in your world?