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Conservation

Q. What is the hummingbird's population status?


Q. What are the biggest dangers facing hummingbirds?

Picture windows, and deforestation on their wintering and breeding grounds and migratory pathway are probably the biggest dangers.
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Q. How can I help hummingbirds get ready for their migratory journey?


A.
They will need to fatten up to nearly double normal body weight to survive the journey. Keep your feeder up and filled until you are sure they're gone.

Q. What's the best kind of feeder and sugar water for backyard hummers?

If you live in an area where mornings are cool or cold, use feeders without perches, or bring in the feeders overnight so the water will be warm in the morning. When hummers sit and eat very cold sugar water, they may become hypothermic. The work of hovering heats their muscles preventing this. Clean your feeder often to prevent bacteria and fungus from growing in the sugar water, and to prevent the water from fermenting. Make your sugar water mixture from 1/4 cup sugar and 1 cup water. Don't use food coloring--your feeder should have red areas to attract the hummers.

You can also provide fruit flies by setting out a mesh bag (such as onions are sold in) filled with bits of banana and melon.

Classification


Q. What is the ruby-throated hummingbird's scientific name and how is it classified?

A. The ruby-throat belongs to

  • Kingdom Animalia
  • Phylum Chordata
  • Subphylum Vertebrata
  • Class Aves
  • Order Apodiformes
  • Family Trochilidae
  • Genus Archilochus (from Greek to mean "chief among birds")
  • Species colubris (which means "snake" in Latin--Linnaeus probably made a spelling error when he named it. The French colibre means "hummingbird").

Its scientific name is a combination of the genus and species names, or Archilochus colubris.

Q. What is the rufous hummingbird's scientific name and how is it classified?

  • Kingdom Animalia
  • Phylum Chordata
  • Subphylum Vertebrata
  • Class Aves
  • Order Apodiformes
  • Family Trochilidae
  • Genus Selasphorus (from Greek for "light carrying")
  • Species rufus (which means "reddish" in Latin).

Its scientific name is a combination of the genus and species names, or Selasphorus rufus.

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