Rufous Sabrewing is primarily nectarivorous, but the diet is not known in much detail. They feed on flowering bananas, as well nectar from Plantago [?], Erythrina, Salvia and Castilleja (Land 1970, Rowley 1984, Schuchmann 1999). Rufous Sabrewing presumably also consumes small arthropods, as do most if not all species of hummingbirds (Remsen et al. 1986).