Rufous Hummingbird

Rufous Hummingbird
Rufous Hummingbird Selasphorus rufus


  • Size: 3 to 4 inches (7-9 cm)
  • Wingspan: 4 inches (11 cm)
  • Weight: .07 to .18 ounces (2-5 g)

This tiny, compact hummingbird has rusty coloration in most plumages and a bill that is long, straight and very slender. It hovers while feeding.


These hummingbirds feed on tiny flying insects and flower nectar. They can be attracted to hummingbird feeders using artificial nectar (sugar water).

Sex Differences:

The male has a red throat and the female's throat is white with a few red feathers. The male is extensively orange on back and body, while the female has a green back and head. The male's tail is orange with pointed black tips. The female's tail is orange, green and black with rounded white tips.


The female will gather grasses, pieces of lichen, plant down and spider webs to build her nest. The spider webs are used to secure the nest to the chosen location and to hold the nest together. The chosen location is usually in a deciduous tree in dense woodland, 5 to 30 feet above ground and near the tip of a downward-sloping branch. The nest is about the size of a walnut.


Rufous Hummingbird
Rufous Hummingbird

A Few Things You Probably Didn't Know:

  • The Rufous Hummingbird breeds farther north than any other species of hummingbird in the world. Its range extends all the way to Alaska.
  • This little hummer will return to the same food sources, plants and feeders year after year.
  • The Rufous hummingbird migrates 3,900 miles from Alaska to Mexico.

Click here for information on other backyard birds.

Click here for general hummingbird information.

Click here for information on best hummingbird feeder.

Click here for to learn which flowers will attract a Rufous Hummingbird.

Click here to learn about hummingbird migration.

Click here to see more hummingbird pictures.

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