These high-altitude hummingbirds inhabit volcanic mountains up to snowline. They tend to prefer the upper parts of páramo zones ranging from dry grassy areas to humid rocky slopes, and are particularly fond of ravines. Ecuadorian Hillstars are territorial and often keep a watch from atop a shrub. During rough weather, however, they take lower, protected perches, or seek shelter in caves. Because they inhabit such high, cold, altitudes year-round, Ecuadorian Hillstars save energy by going into torpor at night. They do so in protected roosts inside caves or crevices. To protect their young from extreme conditions, these hummingbirds build rather large, insulated nests. Males boast a stunning purple hood while females are all bronzy green above.