Subscribe to BirdNote

Sign up to receive a weekly email preview of the following week's shows!

Sign Up
Support BirdNote

Help BirdNote tell more stories, reach more people, and inspire action.


You are here

Thirsty Rufous Hummingbird

Hummingbirds need to consume five times their body weight each day. This Rufous Hummingbird of the West is looking for flowering plants to quench that mighty thirst on its spring migration. A feeder would work, too. Put a hummingbird feeder up in your yard, and see who turns up!

Full Transcript



Thirsty Rufous Hummingbird 

Written by Frances Wood

This is BirdNote!
[Whirring and call of Rufous Hummingbird]
Here they come! Rufous Hummingbirds are migrating north after a hot dry winter in sunny Mexico. And they’re ready for a drink.
[Whirring of hummingbirds wings]
Rufous Hummingbirds need to consume five times their body weight each day, so these western hummers are looking for flowering plants to quench that mighty thirst. If a reddish puffball is hovering at your window, consider becoming a hummingbird bartender.
To help feed them, select a hummingbird feeder that you can easily clean on the inside, and one that has plenty of red to attract the birds. Then fill it with sugar water made by dissolving one part sugar in four parts water. No honey or sugar substitutes, please. And you don’t need red food coloring.
[Call of the Rufous Hummingbird]
There’s no need to feel guilty that feeding hummers will lure them away from their natural sources of nourishment. The birds will continue to consume a healthy balance of plant nectar, small insects, and sap.
So set out a feeder, and before long, you may be hearing a hummingbird hovering around your watering hole.
[Whirring and call of Rufous Hummingbird]
You can learn a lot more about hummingbirds and what attracts them. Begin at our website:
I'm Mary McCann.

Whirring, call and “J display” of the Rufous Hummingbird provided by: The Macaulay Library of Natural Sounds at the Cornell Lab of Ornithology, Ithaca, New York.
Sound Recordist: G.A. Keller.
Producer: John Kessler
Executive Producer: Chris Peterson
© 2009 Tune In to Rev. for March 2009.   March 2020

ID# 033005RUHUKPLU RUHU-02-MM-2009-03-28-


Sights & Sounds

Related topics: