Hi everyone and welcome back to part 2 of our look at the “ruby-throated hummingbird”. Yesterday we saw the male and today in the above pic is the female. She does not have the ruby colored throat but instead it’s a grayish white like her chest and stomach area. She arrives a little later than the male and when she arrives he puts on a very elaborate dance in the air courtship display and if she accepts him, they mate and he leaves. She then selects a nesting site and constructs a tiny nest on top of a sturdy branch and makes it look like just a bump on the branch. She uses spider web and plant down to construct the nest and secures it to the branch with sticky spider silk. Then she attaches lichen to the outside of the nest to camouflage it. She uses her body to smoothly shape the interior of the nest and lays 1 to 3 eggs. She leaves the nest only for brief periods to feed. Hummingbirds eat the nectar from flowers and they prefer flowers that are red or orange, then pink or yellow and generally prefer tubular flowers for feeding. They are easily attracted to feeders like the one shown in my pics. They also eat a large number of small insects including mosquitoes and spiders as well. An important early season food source for them is the sap from trees provided by the sapsuckers. They will often follow a sapsucker around to find all the feeding spots. We are at the northernmost range for the ruby-throated hummingbird in this area.
I hope you have enjoyed our little look at this fascinating tiny bird. Have a wonderful day and God bless!
Steve and Muffin.
©2021 Steve McLeod.