One of my favourite creatures that are around during the summer months are the Humming Birds. While taking photos of them, I would occasionally try to get one to perch on my finger. I would stand, perfectly still, under the feeder and slowly raise my hand up until it was right under a humming bird and when the bird would feel my finger with its tiny feet it would think it was the feeder and perch. Once, I had to rescue one from being caught under a roof, it was so tiny in my hand. When you hold them, they are so light that you can hardly tell that they are there.
Here are a few facts I found on the web:
- Hummingbirds’ hearts are larger in proportion to body size than those of any other warm-blooded animal.
- Hummingbirds have the most rapid heart rate for a bird: up to 500 beats per minute at rest and 1260 beats per minute during activity.
- Their flight muscles account for 25 to 30 percent of their body weight, compared to 15 to 25 percent in other strongly-flying birds.
- Hummingbirds have the most rapid wing beats of birds: up to 80 beats per second.
- Their unique flight mechanisms allow them to hover for long periods of time, move in any direction (even backwards), and dive at over 60 miles per hour during displays.
- They have high body temperatures: 105° to 109°F (40.5° to 42.5°C).
- Hummingbirds may consume 70 percent of their body weight, in solid food per day (8 to 12 calories) and 4 to 8 times their body weight, in water.
- There are over 300 species of hummingbirds. They live exclusively in the Western Hemisphere, from Alaska to the tip of South America.