Last Updated on April 11, 2023 by Lily Aldrin
Hi there! If you’re a bird lover in Michigan, you’re in luck because the state is home to six different types of hummingbirds.
These tiny but mighty creatures are fascinating to observe, with their iridescent feathers and lightning-fast movements.
In this article, I’ll introduce you to each of the six types of hummingbirds you can find in Michigan and share some fun facts about them.
So grab a pair of binoculars and let’s get started!
Types of Hummingbirds in Michigan
1. Ruby-throated Hummingbird
The male Ruby-throated Hummingbird, so called for its brilliant orange-red throat patch, is the most frequent hummingbird in Michigan.
Women tend to have whiter throats.
Metallic green coloring may be seen on the top sections of both sexes, while the undersides are a light gray with subtle scalloping.
Males are noticeably shorter and have forked black tails than females.
Although the ruby-throated hummingbird is not well-known for its song, it does have a distinctive cry that consists of many twittery and chirpy notes.
The breeding area of the ruby-throated hummingbird includes most of Northeastern America and extends north into southern Canada.
Their winter range includes Central America and the southern United States.
They may be found in every county in Michigan.
Flowers of the pink, orange, and red color families, such as jewelweed and honeysuckle, are the preferred nectar sources for ruby-throated hummingbirds.
Spiders and insects, among other tiny arthropods, make up another part of their diet.
There is evidence that they frequent garden nectar feeders.
The ruby-throated hummingbird is a very solitary and territorial bird.
During the summertime and spring months, you may find them in orchards, deciduous forests, gardens, forest margins, and meadows.
They construct their itty-bitty nests on the small branches of evergreen and deciduous trees.
The plant down is stitched together using a spider web, and the cup-shaped nest is covered with lichen and moss for concealment.
It was thought that the population of the ruby-throated hummingbird had been steadily increasing over the last 50 years.
Although, since 2004, it seems that the population has been declining in their breeding area.
The use of pesticides, domestic and wild cats, dirty bird feeders, window collisions, climate change, and habitat loss are all potential dangers.
2. Rufous Hummingbird
Among hummingbirds, these long-distance fliers hold the record for the longest migration.
Breeding in Northwestern America, rufous hummingbirds pass the Rocky Mountains on their way to southern areas for the winter.
A lot of people from up north go over 4,000 kilometers to spend the winter in Mexico.
Rufous hummingbirds may be seen across Michigan during the winter, despite their western territory, but are commonly mistaken for Allen’s hummingbirds.
Widespread habitats include wooded areas and shrubby and thickets fields.
Their nests are hidden by drooping branches high in deciduous or coniferous trees.
The male is distinguished by his rufous feathers, white chest, and iridescent orange neck patch.
In addition to their dark green top parts and white bottom parts, females possess a rufous splash on their flanks and tail and a trace of the orange neck spot.
Males do not have these characteristics.
The top sections of some males are greenish, like the females.
Birds of this species are not known for their extensive repertoire of songs, although the male may sometimes issue a series of warning chirps and a chuu-chu-chuu cry in courting display.
Specifically, fireweeds and lilies, which have long, tubular blossoms that are perfect for attracting rufous hummingbirds for their nectar, are favorites.
This species of hummingbird has been called the “feistiest hummingbird across North America” because of its indomitable and unyielding demeanor.
When it comes to food, they are not afraid to pick a battle and will often attack bigger birds.
Pesticides and global warming both have negative effects on rufous hummingbirds.
As a result of pesticide usage, insects may not have enough food to go through the winter.
Moreover, changes in the seasonality of weather have an impact on the flowering times of plants that these organisms depend on.
According to the IUCN, they are “near-threatened” as of the year 2018.
3. Anna’s Hummingbird
A lovely tiny hummingbird has green and gray-brown plumage; it is rather stocky, too.
The male’s head and neck are iridescent, vivid pink.
It has a harsh, metallic-sounding call.
Hummingbirds like Anna’s get their sustenance from a variety of sources, including tree sap, nectar, and insects.
They create very strong electrostatic charges while foraging, allowing them to gather up vast quantities of pollen, making them crucial pollinators.
Invasive species of eucalyptus have been shown to benefit from their pollination.
Some populations of these hummingbirds do short-distance migration, but for the most part, they are permanent residents of Western North American coastal areas.
They prefer grassy or arid environments but may also be found in open forests and savannahs.
The western United States is home to Anna’s hummingbirds more than any other species.
They have adapted well to human settlements and may be found across their natural range, including cities and suburbs.
There have been very few observations of this species in Michigan, making it an “accidental migrant.”
4. White-eared Hummingbird
The white-eared species, so-called for the white lines that spread over the ears and down either side of the neck, has one of the most endearing faces of any hummingbird.
Its upper parts, breast, neck, and face are iridescent turquoise, metallic violet, and green, while the rest of its plumage is a dark brown.
The bill is bright red and curled, with a black tip.
Women tend to have less vivid personality traits.
Native only to Central America and Mexico, white-eared hummingbirds are beautiful and fascinating birds.
They prefer the canyons and mountains of the western United States, wherein they are rather rare visitors.
One lone case of a wandering person who didn’t mean to be there has been seen in Michigan.
White-eared species are mostly found in the highland forests of their native habitat, where they play an important role in pollinating a wide variety of local plants.
They eat the sugar nectar of many blooming plants, including trees, shrubs, epiphytes, and herbs.
They frequently visit yard nectar feeders and feast on tiny spiders and insects.
Hummingbirds, even the white-eared kind, are very territorial when it comes to food.
5. Broad-billed Hummingbird
Named for its oversized beak, this little hummingbird is covered in brilliant colors.
A white-eared hummingbird, which has many physical characteristics, is a close visual match.
Males have a black tip on their red bill and a blue neck patch.
Females have white eye lines and a green upper body.
The fast chattering of the broad-billed hummingbird is its distinctive cry.
Originally from the southern United States and Mexico, you may find these trees in deciduous woods and woodlands around rivers and canyons.
Nests of broad-billed hummingbirds are often placed on low branches near rocky outcrops or bodies of water at a height of no more than three feet from the ground.
In addition to nectar, they eat insects.
Hummingbirds with broad bills are partial to brightly colored blooms of all shades of red, orange, yellow, and green, including desert honeysuckle and agave.
A total of four distinct subspecies make up the broad-billed hummingbird’s migratory and permanent populations.
The broad-billed hummingbird is very rare but has been seen in the southern part of Michigan.
6. Mexican Violetear
Central America and Mexico are the birthplaces of this tropical species.
They build their nests on low, well-hidden branches and may be found in a wide variety of habitats, including forest peripheries, gardens, scrublands, woods, and overgrown clearings.
The violetear is a species with a lot of vivid coloration.
It gets its name from the violet spots on its ears and breasts that set off its otherwise shiny green plumage.
The man sings with a metallic, jerky quality that sets him apart.
Although they typically forage alone, groups of these birds may sometimes be seen congregating near blooming trees and bushes.
Violet-backed tyrant flycatchers from Mexico are unusual sightings in the southern United States.
They have been sighted in Michigan on rare occasions, although vagrants have been seen all across the continent, even in Canada.
In conclusion, Michigan is home to six different types of hummingbirds, each with its unique characteristics and behaviors.
From the vibrant Ruby-throated hummingbird to the elusive Rufous hummingbird, these tiny creatures never fail to impress with their lightning-fast movements and iridescent feathers.
By attracting them to your backyard with the right plants and feeders, you can enjoy the beauty of these hummingbirds up close.
So, whether you’re an avid bird watcher or just starting to appreciate the natural world around you, take some time to admire Michigan’s incredible hummingbirds.
What is the most common type of hummingbird in Michigan?
The Ruby-throated hummingbird is the most common type of hummingbird found in Michigan.
When is the best time to see hummingbirds in Michigan?
The best time to see hummingbirds in Michigan is during their migration season, which is from April to September.
How can I attract hummingbirds to my backyard in Michigan?
To attract hummingbirds to your backyard in Michigan, you can set up hummingbird feeders and plant flowers that are rich in nectar, such as bee balm, cardinal flower, and trumpet vine.
What is the smallest type of hummingbird found in Michigan?
The Calliope hummingbird is the smallest type of hummingbird found in Michigan, measuring only 3 inches in length.
Are hummingbirds in Michigan endangered?
No, hummingbirds in Michigan are not considered endangered. However, it is still important to protect their habitats and provide them with enough food and shelter.