Northward Movement Picking Up
It's hard to believe but a few hummingbird species have reached their breeding territories already. Keep reporting and submitting photos to Journey North.
Rufous Hummingbird Migration
Weather along the Pacific coast continues to impact the migration of hummingbirds and many species. However, Journey North observers now see Rufous Hummingbirds as far north as Vancouver, British Columbia.
Brenda in West Vancouver, BC: “Adult male Rufous at feeder. Arrival 5 days later than previous year but same approximate time of day. Picture with smartphone is grainy due to fading light.” (03/26/2023)
Lynn in Lantzville, BC: “First Male Rufous at feeder 3:30 pm. Had a good drink and went on his way. One day later than last year.” (03/25/2023)
Ruby-throated Hummingbird Migration
Along the Gulf Coast states in the U.S., Journey North volunteers are seeing their first Ruby-throated hummingbirds of the spring migration season. Migratory activity should increase steadily over the coming weeks in this region. Please share your observations with Journey North.
Holly in Warwick, RI: “I saw it at 7:10 am this morning. I have nothing for it, no flowers yet either. I have since made the sugar solution, cooled it, and hung a feeder out. Hoping it comes back! This is the earliest I’ve ever seen one here!” (03/23/2023)
Carl in Grovetown, GA: “Finally saw my first one of the season at 1615, and it was this beautiful male, who was also gracious enough to hang around the feeders long enough for me to grab my camera! It had been raining steadily all day today About an hour after it finally stopped…he came for a visit!” (03/26/2023)
Gordon in Cullman, AL: “Look who finally showed up this afternoon. So excited to see him. I just love these tiny birds. They are amazing.” (03/28/2023)
Marilyn in Toccoa, GA: “First hummer of the season. He bumped our window. I just held him in the warmth and comfort of my hand until he got his senses back & off he flew.” (03/28/2023)
Sadly, as Journey North volunteer, Marilyn, experienced first hand, close to 1 billion migratory birds died when colliding with the hard surface of buildings, especially large windows. Do your part. Learn about bird collisions and how to prevent them.
Other Hummingbird Species: Allen’s, Anna’s, Broad-tailed, Black-chinned, and Costa’s
Journey North observers help track five additional species of migratory hummingbirds. Observational reports are slowly trickling in. Anna’s are moving eastward into Idaho. Texas and southwestern U.S. states are still the hot spots for Black-chinned hummingbird sightings.
Jeanne in Las Vegas, NV: “Black-chinned Hummingbird, adult male. The first observation for 2023 at this location.” (03/24/2023)
Martha in Georgetown, TX was excited to see a first Black-chinned for the spring migration season. (03/26/2023)
Pam in Kamiah, ID: “Annas at the feeder. Knats are starting to come out so they are getting some insects now.” (03/15/2023)
Mary in Alamogordo, NM: This is my first actual sighting of the year but, on 3/20 I am fairly certain I heard my broad-tailed hummingbird and they usually show up on the same day almost like clockwork. The earliest I think I have ever had one is on March 25th. Things have changed. Hummingbirds are showing up earlier and staying later almost every year.” (03/21/2023)
Are you seeing Allen’s, Anna’s, Broad-tailed, Black-chinned, and Costa’s hummingbirds in your area? Please let us know. Don’t forget to include photos and the names of the hummingbird species you are observing.
Put Feeders Out and Plant Pollinator Habitat
It is time to put your feeders and potted nectar plants out. These nectar sources provide crucial energy for migrating hummingbirds. And depending on your location, start planting brightly colored native flowers to provide pollinator habitat for hummingbirds and other species such as monarch butterflies. Don’t delay – hummingbirds are here in many locations in the southern U.S.
Call for Photos
If possible, please include photos in your reports. Photos are always helpful; they aid in identification and shed light on behavior. However, hummingbirds are not always cooperative subjects. One potential workaround is to take a video and then extract a screenshot to use as a photo. Give it a try!
Learn more in the tutorials below: