About us: We own the Wild Birds Unlimited nature shop in East Lansing, Michigan,
a store that provides a wide variety of supplies to help you enjoy the birdwatching hobby.

This blog was created to answer frequently asked questions & to share nature stories and photographs.
To contribute, email me at bloubird@gmail.com.

Sunday, March 30, 2014

Hummingbird migration map

The most frequently asked question in the spring is when to put out the hummingbird feeders? In mid-Michigan you have to pay your taxes and put out your hummingbird feeders on April 15th. You can track the migration of the Ruby-throated hummingbird on www.hummingbirds.net.

The hummingbirds we see in April probably won’t stick around but continue on to nest in the Upper Peninsula or Canada. The hummingbirds that choose to nest in our area (the regulars) usually arrive by Mothers Day, the second Sunday in May.
Snapshot of Migration map from http://www.hummingbirds.net/map.html
Hummingbirds are truly one of the most fascinating groups of birds on the planet. Out of all birds, they have the fastest metabolism, the largest heart in proportion to body size, the fastest heart and wing beats, the most brilliant feather iridescence and one of the highest rates of nesting success. Hummingbirds are the lightest bird at just 1/10th of an ounce, have the smallest bird brain, can fly up down, forward and backwards but are virtually incapable of walking.

They can consume up to twice their body weight in nectar every day. In order to accomplish this amazing feat, hummingbirds' bills and tongues have evolved into incredibly efficient feeding tools. Despite popular belief, hummingbirds do not feed on nectar by sucking it up with their bills; instead, they actually lap it up with their tongues. They feed by dipping their forked, open-grooved tongues into nectar at up to 12 times a second. Then they use the flexible tip of their bill to capture insects and insect eggs from the ground and on plants. They love spiders and spider eggs.

A great way to see this amazing tongue in action is to use a Wild Birds Unlimited Hummingbird Feeder or a WBU Window Hummingbird Feeder. With their clear plastic bases, you will be able to witness the rapid lapping action of these fascinating hummingbirds.

Related Articles: 
- The Best Hummingbird Feeders http://bit.ly/FQ9iGc
- How Many Species of Hummingbirds are There in Michigan? http://bit.ly/yCeR1c
- Where should I hang my hummingbird feeder? http://bit.ly/FQ9kxU
- When did people start to feed hummingbirds? http://bit.ly/yhfoMG
- How to Stop Your Hummingbird Feeder from Dripping. http://bit.ly/yROgU5
- How Do I Keep Bees Off My Hummingbird Feeder? http://bit.ly/Aj07oq

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