Hummingbird Sleeping While Hanging Upside Down

Watch this brief video of a Hummingbird sleeping while hanging upside down on a feeder, and then see what happens next. We had never heard of this until we saw it happen.

Hummingbirds are fascinating creatures with many unique traits. Here are some interesting facts about them:

  1. Small Size: Hummingbirds are among the smallest birds in the world. The Bee Hummingbird of Cuba is the smallest, measuring just about 2.25 inches (5.7 cm) in length and weighing less than 2 grams.
  2. Fast Wing Beats: Their wings beat incredibly fast, ranging from about 50 to 80 beats per second. This rapid movement allows them to hover in place and move with agility in all directions.
  3. High Metabolism: Hummingbirds have a very high metabolism to support their energy-intensive flying. They need to eat constantly and can consume up to half their body weight in sugar each day, often feeding every 10-15 minutes.
  4. Incredible Flight: They are the only birds that can fly backward. Their unique ball-and-socket shoulder joints allow them to rotate their wings in a full circle, enabling their remarkable flying abilities.
  5. Migratory Patterns: Many hummingbird species are migratory. The Ruby-throated Hummingbird, for example, migrates from North America to Central America, often flying non-stop for up to 18 hours across the Gulf of Mexico.
  6. Colorful Plumage: The iridescent colors of hummingbirds’ feathers are not due to pigments but to the microscopic structure of the feathers, which refract light like a prism, creating dazzling colors.
  7. Long Tongues: They have long, extendable tongues that can flick in and out of their bills up to 13 times per second, allowing them to efficiently extract nectar from flowers.
  8. Memory Skills: Hummingbirds have excellent memories. They can remember every flower they have visited and how long it will take for each flower to refill with nectar.
  9. Heart Rate: Their heart rate can reach up to 1,260 beats per minute. During rest, it slows down significantly to conserve energy.
  10. Breeding: Hummingbirds build tiny, cup-shaped nests using plant down, spider silk, and other materials. The nests are often decorated with lichen or moss to camouflage them.
  11. Lifespan: Despite their high metabolism and energy expenditure, some hummingbirds can live for several years. The record for the longest-lived banded hummingbird is over 9 years.
  12. Aggressive Behavior: They can be surprisingly aggressive, especially when defending their feeding territories. Males are known to chase away intruders, including much larger birds.

These incredible attributes make hummingbirds some of the most intriguing and remarkable birds in the avian world.