Black-chinned Hummingbird Identification

Black-chinned Hummingbird

The black-chinned hummingbird is one of the most beautiful creatures in nature. It is very active and flies around quickly. It is also known as a “hummingbird” because of its rapid flight. The black-chinned hummingbird is a migratory bird that lives in temperate regions of the United States and Canada. This bird’s name is derived from its black chin.

The black-chinned hummingbird is a small bird with a distinctive black chin. They are found throughout North America and are commonly seen in residential areas. The average size of a black-chinned hummingbird is around 9 cm or 3.5 inches. The average lifespan of a black-chinned hummingbird is about 2 years.

Black-chinned Hummingbird
Black-chinned Hummingbird

The black-chinned hummingbird is a member of the family Trochilidae. It belongs to the genus Cyanopterus. The black-chinned hummingbird’s natural habitat is in forests, meadows, and savannas. It prefers to feed on nectar from flowers and fruits, especially sugar-rich berries.

Habitat

are found in the Southwest and Midwest. They migrate to the northernmost parts of North America in the spring and fall. They feed on nectar and insects.

Breeding

Main Points: Mating

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In the spring and summer, male black-chinned hummingbirds build a nest in a tree cavity. Females lay 2-3 eggs and incubate them for 14 days. Both parents help raise the chicks.

Hatching

Main Points: Nesting

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The chicks hatch and leave the nest after 7 days. They remain with their parents for about 3 weeks and then fly south in search of a new home.

Migration

Main Points: Migration

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In the fall,  travel from the southern United States to Mexico. Some birds may stay in Mexico while others return to the United States.

Wintering

Main Points: Wintering

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will begin to arrive in Mexico in November. They migrate back to the United States in April or May.

Taxonomy

Main Points: Taxonomy

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The genus name, Archilochus, was given by Linnaeus in 1758 and the species name, aterrimus, means “beautiful red”. The scientific name of the black-chinned hummingbird, A. aterrimus, refers to the bright red patch on its chin.

Size & Shape

Black-chinned hummingbirds are medium-sized, approximately 5 inches long, with a wingspan of  3.5 inches. They have a black throat with a broad white collar, a white rump, a white belly, and a white tail. Their eyes are yellow with a black ring around the iris.

Distribution

Black-chinned hummingbirds are found in coastal areas of western North America, from British Columbia and Alaska, south through California, and into Baja California, Mexico. They are migratory and may move up to 3,000 miles.

Habitat

Black-chinned hummingbirds feed on nectar and pollen from flowers. They are found in a wide variety of habitats, including forest clearings, chaparral, fields, parks, and gardens.

Behavior

Black-chinned hummingbirds are territorial and may defend feeding territories from other hummingbirds. They are very aggressive in defending their territory and may attack other birds. They will dive bomb other hummingbirds that enter their territory.

Breeding

are monogamous and will form pairs for breeding. They nest in a tree cavity, usually in the fork of a large branch. They build a cup-shaped nest out of plant down, spider webs, and plant stems.

Eggs are white, oval, and measure approximately 1.5 inches long by 0.75 inches wide. They are laid in a single clutch and incubated for 12 days. The young are altricial, hatching naked and blind. They will begin feeding themselves after 2 days.

Migration

are migratory and may migrate up to 3,000 miles in the fall. They travel along the Pacific Flyway and may stop to feed en route

Further Reading

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