Rufous Hummingbird Selasphorus rufus


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The summary below is an overview from The Birds of North America Online.

BNA Account Authors: Calder, William A. and Susan Healy

The Rufous Hummingbird is North America's "extremist" hummingbird, widely known in the west for its aggressive nature. Venturing far from the equatorial tropics in which its ancestors evolved, it reaches the northernmost latitude of any hummingbird (61° N). After making the longest (measured in body lengths) known avian migration, individuals from Alaskan populations face a short breeding season but the longest day-length seen by any hummingbird.

Increasingly this hummingbird has been recorded as a fall and winter vagrant in the southeastern (and even the northeastern) US. Whether this is a new trend, or one detected simply because of the growing interest and sophistication of birders, and more numerous hummingbird feeders, remains unclear. But no other western hummingbird is known to wander to this extent - another reflection of this "extremist" bird.

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© Geoffrey A. Keller

  • Year-round
  • Migration
  • Breeding
  • Non-Breeding

Recommended Citation

Rufous Hummingbird (Selasphorus rufus), In Neotropical Birds Online (T. S. Schulenberg, Editor). Cornell Lab of Ornithology, Ithaca, NY, USA. retrieved from Neotropical Birds Online: