Hummingbird

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Phaethornithinae
Trochilinae

For a taxonomic list of genera, see:

For an alphabetic species list, see:

Hummingbirds are birds that comprise the family Trochilidae. They are among the smallest of birds, and include the smallest extant bird species, the Bee Hummingbirds. They can hover in mid-air by rapidly flapping their wings 12–90 times per second (depending on the species). They can also fly backwards, and are the only group of birds able to do so.[1] Their English name derives from the characteristic hum made by their rapid wing beats. They can fly at speeds exceeding 15 m/s (54 km/h, 34 mi/h).[2]

Contents

Diet

Hummingbirds drink nectar, a sweet liquid inside flowers. Like bees, they are able to assess the amount of sugar in the nectar they eat; they reject flower types that produce nectar that is less than 10% sugar and prefer those whose sugar content is stronger. Nectar is a poor source of nutrients, so hummingbirds meet their needs for protein, amino acids, vitamins, minerals, etc. by preying on insects and spiders, especially when feeding young.

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