Liberty Lifestyle Blog: The Amazing Journey of a Hummingbird

It’s Springtime and Hummingbird season! Many hummingbirds spend the winter in Central America or Mexico, and migrate north to their breeding grounds in the southern United States as early as February, and to areas further north later in the spring. Hummingbirds fly by day when nectar sources such as flowers are more abundant. Flying low allows the birds to see, and stop at, food supplies along the way. They are also experts at using tail winds to help reach their destination faster and by consuming less energy and body fat. Research indicates a hummingbird can travel as much as 23 miles in one day.

During migration, a hummingbird’s heart beats up to 1,260 times a minute, and its wings flap 15 to 80 times a second. To support this high energy level, a hummingbird will typically gain 25-40% of their body weight before they start migration in order to make the long trek over land, and water.

The first arrivals in spring are usually males. Some, however, do not migrate, in areas like California and the upper Pacific coast, the southern parts of the Gulf of Mexico states, and some along the southern Atlantic Ocean areas.

Migration Patterns of the Hummingbird:

You can see on the map that they start arriving in the southern United States in south Texas, Louisiana, Alabama, Georgia, and Florida in late February to mid March.

By early April there are sightings farther north in Texas, Arkansas, Mississippi, Tennessee, South Carolina into North Carolina.

Mid-April brings sightings in Oklahoma, Kansas, Missouri, Kentucky, West Virginia, Virginia, and Indianna.

By Late April they reach Nebraska, Iowa, Ohio, Pennsylvania, New York, New Jersey, and parts of New England.

We know spring is really on its way in May when reports come from North and South Dakota, Minnesota, Wisconsin, Michigan, Maine, Vermont, and Canadian provinces including Ontario, Quebec, Manitoba, Saskatchewan, as well as New Brunswick, Nova Scotia, and Prince Edward Island.

The western coasts see a few different species in addition to ruby-throated hummingbirds.

Types of Hummingbirds in the United States

There are between 325 to 340 hummingbird species (Trochilidoe Family), making our precious jewels the 2nd largest family of birds after Flycatchers. In North America, there are only approximately 23 species of hummingbirds. Above are a few of these 23 species.

What to Look for in a Hummingbird Feeder

Hummingbirds may arrive in your area before they are marked on the map, so get your feeders ready about two weeks before their anticipated arrival date. Purchase a couple so that you can have one going if you need to clean/change another one and they can get territorial over their food source, so have enough depending on how many come to your yard!

Feeder Features to Look For:
-A perch for the hummingbirds so they can rest while they eat.
-If bottle-style feeder, look for a glass bottle which lasts much longer than plastic.
-Easy-to-clean all parts. A small bottle brush will help!

Hummingbird Food Recipe

Contrary to popular belief, it is not necessary for your Hummingbird food to be red. If you purchase pre-made mix, it will most likely be red, but if you’re making your own food you can choose to add red food dye or keep it more natural with no food coloring. Either way, you’ll have magical Hummingbirds hovering over your feeders for all to see!

-Refined white sugar

Directions for Hummingbird Food:
-Mix 1 part sugar with 4 parts water (for example, 1 cup of sugar with 4 cups of water) until the sugar is dissolved. *you do need to boil the water, just make sure your sugar is completely dissolved
-Fill your hummingbird feeders with the sugar water and place outside
-Extra sugar water can be stored in a refrigerator

Hummingbird Embroidery Kit Collection

There is no better way to meditate on the beauty of the Hummingbird than with an embroidery kit from the Hummingbird Collection. Repetitive stitching truly brings this beautiful bird to life! Shop our collection today!

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