Ruby-throated Hummingbirds!

Since arriving in Nova Scotia, we’ve ¬†been enjoying the show out on the deck of the family home in South West Margaree. It is hard to get an exact count because they’re constantly moving, but I think that there’s close to 30 ruby-throated hummingbirds (Archilochus colubris) visiting the feeders.

Ruby-throated Hummingbird (Archilochus colubris)
A female Ruby-throated Hummingbird (Archilochus colubris) perched in the raspberry canes.

In Canada, the range of the ruby-throated typically doesn’t extend west of the Rocky Mountains in Alberta, so it has been fantastic to sit and watch these gorgeous hummingbirds in action while enjoying a morning cup of coffee.

There have been a couple of males visiting the feeders, but they’re definitely outnumbered by both female and juvenile hummingbirds. The males don’t seem to perch in raspberry canes below the feeders so I’ve been unsuccessful photographing them. The females and juveniles are much more cooperative.

Ruby-throated Hummingbird (Archilochus colubris)
The brilliant green back of the Ruby-throated Hummingbird (Archilochus colubris) is iridescent in the bright sunlight.

We’ve been able to get excellent looks at the hummingbirds and the kids have been fascinated by the acrobatics of these small birds as they jockey for position.

Males are distinctive with their brilliant red gorgets (depending on the light they look almost dark purple/red) and black, sharply notched tails.

Females and juveniles lack the throat colouration, but make up for it with impressive displays which show a fan of white tipped tail feathers.

The ruby-throated hummingbird show has definitely been a highlight of the trip. When traveling with young children, it is always great when the birds come to you!