Hummingbirds are sweet little creatures. You could watch them for hours flitting from one trumpet flower to another with their feverishly beating wings. In this article, we shall discuss the different types of hummingbirds in Michigan.
So, sit and relax as you get to know each of them better.
1. Ruby-throated Hummingbird
The ruby-throated is the most popular species in Michigan and gets its name from the males’ colorful orange-red throat patch. However, females are white-throated. Both sexes have pale-gray underparts and an upperpart coloration that is metallic-green.
In addition, males have black tales and are slightly smaller than females. These birds produce a complex call that consists of a number of chirpy and twittery notes.
The breeding territory of the ruby-throated includes eastern North America and southern Canada. For the winter, they move south, and their wintering sites range from Florida to Central America. They can be found all around the state of Michigan.
Ruby-throated birds are nectar feeders and love orange, red, and pink flowers like jewelweed and honeysuckle. They also consume small arthropods like spiders and insects. These birds usually visit garden nectar feeders.
Ruby-throated hummingbirds are solitary and quite territorial. During the spring and summer, you can find them in deciduous woodlands, forest edges, orchards, meadows, and gardens.
Furthermore, these birds make their tiny nests on slanting branches of deciduous or pine trees. The cup-shaped nest comprises plant down, spider silk, moss, and lichen.
The ruby-throated hummingbird appeared to be a thriving species with a steady increase in population during the last 50 years. However, populations appear to be declining in most of their breeding range since 2004.
These birds make annual 500-mile migrations, completed twice a year. They make that journey nonstop. And they must flap their wings the entire journey. What a distance!
Their possible threats include unsanitary bird feeders, cat predation, and pesticide use. Climate change, collision with windows, and habitat loss could also be climate change.
2. Rufous Hummingbirds
Rufous hummingbirds are among the different types of hummingbirds in Michigan. The males are the most attractive, with beautiful reddish-orange colors on their bodies and white chests.
These handsome lads have a patch on their throats as well, although it is commonly red-orange or yellow-green rather than red. Females have dull green on their backs and crowns, with white, speckled throats.
Despite their small size, Rufous hummingbirds are quite aggressive, especially when it comes to defending their territories and food sources.
You’ll find them attacking other hummingbirds or larger birds if they believe their food source is threatened.
They are quite the sugar addicts, required to eat around half their body weight in sugar per day, and this may account for their violent nature.
Furthermore, rufous hummingbirds arrive in the United States for the breeding season around May. They leave for warmer climates once more around the end of September, with males leaving first and females and their young following about two weeks later.
These birds are not exceptionally talkative, but the male makes repeated warning chirps. Also, they make a chu-chu-chu courtship call. They inhabit woods, forests, and shrubby meadows.
Pesticides and climate change have an impact on rufous hummingbirds. The application of hazardous pesticides has an impact on the winter food source of insects.
Weather patterns also influence the blooming season of the flowering plant species on which they rely. The IUCN listed them as “near-threatened” in 2018.
You might have thought that the 500-mile journey for Ruby-throated birds was difficult; it would be a breeze for rufous birds.
This species has the longest migration of any hummingbird, going 3,000 miles from Alaska and Canada to winter in Mexico.
3. Anna’s Hummingbird
Also listed on the different types of hummingbirds in Michigan is Anna’s hummingbird. These are little birds that are mostly green or gray.
The male’s head and throat are colorful reddish-pink, whereas the female’s throat is grayish with a spotting of red.
Anna’s Hummingbirds do not migrate, but some may travel short distances in the winter. These birds are the common hummingbirds along the Pacific Ocean.
During courtship, the males climb up to 130 feet into the air before falling back to the earth with a blast of noise from their tail feathers.
Furthermore, their habitats include backyards and packs with colorful blooms and nectar feeders. But you can also find them in scrub and savannah.
4. White-eared Hummingbird
You can recognize these hummingbirds with distinctive white stripes across their faces. These stripes almost look like ears, hence their name. Their backs and wings are green, and they have black feathers on top of their heads.
Males will spend the majority of their time perched on high trees, singing songs to attract ladies. You’re most likely to find these birds in mountainous forests. However, they’re also among the different types of hummingbirds in Michigan.
Furthermore, they feed on the high-sugar nectar of colorful flowering plants such as shrubs, trees, herbs, and epiphytes. They also consume small insects and spiders and occasionally visit garden nectar feeders.
White-eared hummingbirds are known to establish feeding territories that they fiercely defend. If you want to attract these birds to your home, make sure you have both sugar-water feeders and tubular plants.
5. Broad-billed Hummingbird
The broad-billed is a tiny hummingbird with bright plumage and a large bill. It resembles the white-eared hummingbird in appearance.
Males are brilliant green with a blue neck patch and a red beak that is black-tipped. Females are lime-green on top, gray-brown on the bottom, and have a white eyestripe.
The broad-billed hummingbird’s call is a fast chatter. They are native to Mexico and the southern United States, where they live in deciduous woodlands and forests along streams or canyons.
These birds make their nests within three feet of the ground, usually on a drooping branch near water or rocky outcrops.
Males have a unique perch from which they will entice females into their area. The male will initiate a courtship display as soon as a female enters his territory.
Breeding pairs do not stay together for multiple seasons, and females rear their young on their own. Furthermore, Broad-billed hummingbirds consume nectar and insects.
They prefer red and yellow flowers like desert honeysuckle and agave plant blossoms. Also, they’re among the different types of hummingbirds in Michigan.
The broad-billed hummingbird has four subspecies, each with migratory and resident populations. Rare sightings of the broad-billed hummingbird have been reported across the continent, especially in Michigan’s south.
6. Mexican Violetear
Mexico and Central America are home to this tropical species. They live on forest borders, overgrown clearings, forests, and scrublands. And gardens, where they build their nests on low, well-hidden branches.
Violetear is a vibrantly colored species. It has metallic green plumage with a violet breast and violet ear patches. The male has a characteristic metallic, jerky song. They are usually solitary but tend to gather around flowering trees and shrubs.
Furthermore, Mexican violetears are unusual visitors to the United States’ southern states. Vagrants make uncommon appearances across the continent, as far north as Canada, and have been sighted in Michigan on occasion.
7. Costa’s Hummingbird
These are also among the different types of hummingbirds in Michigan. They are desert hummingbirds with iridescent purple neck patches and purple crowns.
Their backs are green, and their bellies are white with green stripes along the center. Female Costa’s Hummingbirds lack the purple coloration and have a white belly.
Costa’s Hummingbirds live in desert scrub, chaparral, and deciduous forest, and they visit wide varieties of plant species. Nests are made in shrubs three to seven feet above the ground and can have up to two broods per year.
These hummingbirds will leave if their food supply runs out or the temperature rises too high. When nighttime temperatures drop too low, these hummingbirds can enter a torpid state. They decrease their heart rates and lower their body temperatures.
Furthermore, you can find these birds in Baja, California, southern California, and southwestern Arizona. In the winter, they move from the Pacific Coast of Mexico to Arizona, the southern boundaries of Nevada, Utah, and California, to breed.
8. Berylline Hummingbird
Beryllines are among the different types of hummingbirds in Michigan. They are metallic green in color, with a gray lower body and scarlet wings.
Females are slightly smaller and less colorful than males. Their upper bills are black, while their lower bills have a reddish-orange color.
These birds can be found from Mexico to Honduras in open oak, pine forests, and shaded canyons. You can also find them in southeastern Arizona.
They are solitary birds that can be violent when guarding their territory, which includes hummingbird feeders.
Berylline Hummingbirds are an accidental Hummingbird species in Michigan. There was an unusual event in 2014 that has not been replicated, so don’t get your hopes up; instead, move south.
There you have it – the 8 different types of hummingbirds in Michigan. Even though there are not many species of hummingbirds to boast of in this state, there are still other beautiful birds you can find there. Have you seen any of these birds? If so, let us know in the comment section below!