A flash of green and red, the Ruby-throated Hummingbird is eastern North America’s sole breeding hummingbird. These brilliant, tiny, precision-flying creatures glitter like jewels in the full sun, then vanish with a zip toward the next nectar source. Feeders and flower gardens are great ways to attract these birds, and some people turn their yards into buzzing clouds of hummingbirds each summer. Enjoy them while they’re around; by early fall they’re bound for Central America, with many crossing the Gulf of Mexico in a single flight.
The Ruby-throated Hummingbird (Archilochus colubris), is a small hummingbird. It is the only species of hummingbird that regularly nests east of the Mississippi River in North America. The Ruby-throated Hummingbird is 7–9 cm long with an 8–11 cm wingspan, and weighs about 3 g. Adults are metallic green above and greyish white below, with near-black wings. Their bill is long, straight and very slender.
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