Reaching Northern Limits

May 18, 2023 by Team Journey North

Hummingbirds are approaching the northern limits of their breeding ranges. As migration begins to wind down, be on the lookout for nests, eggs, territorial behavior, and nectaring activity. And please keep reporting to Journey North.

Photo: Amy in Newburgh, IN


Ruby-throated Hummingbird

The latest reports of Ruby-throated hummingbirds are coming from south central and south eastern Canada from Alberta to Nova Scotia. These are signs that Ruby-throats are reaching the northern limits of their breeding range. Explore our map to view the latest observations.

Jennifer in Sentinel, AB: "This little guy has been around the past couple days. . ." (05/12/2023)

Kathi in Halifax, NS: "Male ruby-throated at feeder and performing mating swoops" (05/14/2023)

Rufous Hummingbird and Other Species

While some Rufous Hummingbirds have reached the northern limit of their breeding range in Southcentral Alaska, others are still moving through Western Canada.

Nancy in North, AB: "First hummingbird of the year, female rufous. Approximately 3pm" (05/10/2023)

Christopher in Burmis, AB: "First Female Rufous this year" (05/14/2023)

Farther south, Black-chinned Hummingbirds are being spotted in Colorado, Utah, Nevada, Idaho, and Oregon.

Candice in Windsor, CO: "Black Chinned at feeder last night, dusk." (05/13/2023)

Toby in Ammon, ID: "First sighting...Black-Chinned hummingbird of the spring season. Flew near me while I was working in my garden. It landed in a Crimson Maple tree looking at the blossoms." (05/14/2023)

And Colorado appears to be a hotspot for Broad-tailed Hummingbirds.

De in Woodland Park, CO: "Broad-tailed hummingbird flew by late morning. Have heard a couple of other broad-tails in the past 10 days." (05/15/2023)

Other Observations

Summer is approaching and migration is beginning to wind down. If you notice territorial behavior or find hummingbird nests, please report these observations under Hummingbird, Other Observations.

Sally in Naugatuck, CT: "We just had some territorial fighting at our deck feeder.This was the first fight I have seen this year. . . They have been feeding mostly early morning and late afternoon/ early evening. They are such a joy to watch!" (05/12/2023)

And if you see hummingbirds feeding on flowers, please report these observations under Hummingbird, Nectaring from Flowers. If you know plant names, submit this information in the comment section.

Beverly in Houston, TX: "Just when you think the male rubythroats are gone we see one still after late night rain cold front. From 7:15-9 a.m. another adult male is nectaring from flowers: Black and blue salvia, Coral honeysuckle, Vermillionaire, Peach/coral porterweed, Red porterweed, Both in ground, purple gurantica,Rokin deep purple salvia. . . " (05/17/2023)

Thank You for Reporting!

Please continue to submit your reports to Journey North. Species tracked include Ruby-throated, Rufous, Allen's, Anna's, Black-chinned, Broad-tailed, Calliope, and Costa’s. Whenever possible, please include a photo with your reports. Photos are always helpful; they aid in identification and shed light on behavior. And, we love to share them with our Journey North community!