About us: We own a wild bird feeding supply 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.

Wednesday, August 23, 2017

Rufous vs Ruby-throated hummingbird

The Ruby-throated Hummingbird is the most common hummer in Michigan but keep your eyes open for another fall vagrant! The Rufous Hummingbird is the most widely-distributed hummingbird in North America. They are more typically a western species, some even nesting as far north as Alaska. But more and more rufous hummers have been documented in Michigan.

They turn up at backyard sugar water feeders in late August and sometimes are reported hanging around even as late as November. Provided sufficient food, they able to tolerate temperatures down to −4 °F. Our common Ruby-throated hummingbirds usually migrate south by October.

Male Rufous Hummingbirds are a little larger than the ruby-throated, have rusty orange sides and bellies and a vivid red throat, while females are mostly green with a spot of orange on the throat. They winter mainly in Mexico and Panama.
Photos from https://www.allaboutbirds.org/guide/Ruby-throated_Hummingbird/id
Like our Ruby-throated, they feed on nectar from flowers using a long extendable tongue or catch insects on the wing. These birds require frequent feeding while active during the day and become torpid at night to conserve energy.

Related Articles:
What is the nectar recipe for hummingbirds? http://goo.gl/MK3AU
Fun Facts about Ruby-throated Hummingbirds http://goo.gl/jcjcr
The Best Hummingbird Feeders http://bit.ly/L4yY3i
Why the color on a hummingbirds’ throat flashes http://bit.ly/JZ31qX
When did people start to feed hummingbirds?: http://bit.ly/o8Y8HR

How Many Species of Hummingbirds are There in Michigan? http://how-many-hummingbirds.html

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