Vervain Hummingbird Mellisuga minima

  • Order: Caprimulgiformes
  • Family: Trochilidae
  • Polytypic: 2 subspecies
  • Authors: Christopher J. Clark


Conservation Status

Classified as Least Concern by BirdLife International (2008). There do not appear to be any major threats to this species in spite of the human alteration of its native habitat. The Vervain Hummingbird is widespread in nearly all habitats except dense forest, and readily uses human-altered landscapes like both for food (e.g. it feeds from gardens and crops like coffee) and breeding. Introduced predators (e.g. mongoose) are not known to have had much of an impact on this species. Suggestions that the population has declined (because a historical account described the Vervain to be present "in thousands": Kaempfer 1924) are unsupported, because these historical accounts are unlikely to be quantitatively accurate or to cover a sufficiently broad geographic area so as to be general. This species is found over a broad range of elevations and habitats, so global climate change appears unlikely to pose a direct threat to this species.

Effects of human activity on populations

Unknown; none documented.

Recommended Citation

Clark, C. J. (2009). Vervain Hummingbird (Mellisuga minima), version 1.0. In Neotropical Birds Online (T. S. Schulenberg, Editor). Cornell Lab of Ornithology, Ithaca, NY, USA.