A few facts about the amazing Hummingbird.
Hummingbirds are small, colorful birds with iridescent feathers. Their name comes from the fact that they flap their wings so fast (about 50 to 200 flaps per second depending on the direction of flight and air conditions) that they make a humming noise. Hummingbirds can fly right, left, up, down, backwards, and even upside down. They are also able to hover by flapping their wings in a figure-8 pattern.
A hummingbird must consume approximately 1/2 of its weight in sugar daily, and the average hummingbird feeds 5-8 times per hour. Hummingbirds do not suck nectar through their long bills, they lick, (10-15 times per second), it with fringed forked tongues. The hummingbird’s fast breathing rate, fast heartbeat, and high body temperature require that they eat often. Humming birds have no sense of smell but have very keen eyesight.
At rest, a hummingbird takes an average of 250 breaths per minute. The Ruby-Throated hummingbird flies 500 miles nonstop across the Gulf of Mexico during both its spring and fall migrations. Depending on the species, habitat conditions, predators and other factors, the average lifespan of a wild hummingbird is 3-12 years.
Hummingbirds radiate like hot coals in the sun. The color that reaches your eye is created by pigment, which absorbs some colors and rejects others. Like soap bubbles, hummingbird’s color comes from iridescence, not pigment.