Scintillant Hummingbird Selasphorus scintilla

  • Order: Caprimulgiformes
  • Family: Trochilidae
  • Monotypic
  • Authors: Clark, Christopher J.


See Sexual Behavior for courtship displays.

Copulation has not been observed.

Nests are a small cup similar to those made by other ‘bee’ species, lined on the outside with lichens and moss (Blake 1956; Hartman 1957) (see picture). “Nest a tiny cup of pale-coloured floss of thistles or other composites, grass heads, treefern scales and spider web, decorated with bits of moss and lichens, sometimes lined with small feathers, 1-4 m up on outside of large shrub or in grass tussock, often at edge of open space or on roadcut” (Stiles 1999).  Three nests contained 2 eggs each, and two clutches measured 12 × 8, 11.5 × 8; 11.5 × 8, and 11 × 8 mm (Blake 1956). Reproductive season likely begins in September (Stiles 1983); a nest with an egg found on 10 February 1956 (Hartman 1957) was likely near the end of the breeding season. A nesting female was found approx 1 m above the ground in a low bush, inside the canopy in October 2009 (picture). No direct information on incubation or fledging time available.A female Scintillant on a nest.  Copyright Anand Varma.

Recommended Citation

Clark, Christopher J. 2011. Scintillant Hummingbird (Selasphorus scintilla), version 1.0. In Neotropical Birds Online (T. S. Schulenberg, editor). Cornell Lab of Ornithology, Ithaca, New York, USA.