As spring approaches, most birders in the eastern United States get excited about the return of the Ruby-throated Hummingbirds to their yards. Many of us are regularly checking Hummingbirds.net and their awesome migration map to see how close the hummingbirds are getting to us. You can also learn about other hummingbird species on this website such as Rufous Hummingbird, which is the next most likely species to find in the East.
To me, the migration of the Ruby-throated Hummingbird is really incredible. After spending the winter months in Central America, these tiny birds fly directly over the Gulf of Mexico landing along the US coast. This takes about 18-20 hours of non-stop flight. There is nowhere to land and rest during this time over the open water, so no matter what conditions these birds encounter, they must keep going. Bad weather or unfavorable winds can spell disaster but still most birds survive their journey.
You can learn all about attracting these beautiful birds to your yard by reading this article by experts Kenn and Kim Kaufman! Have you seen your first Ruby-throated Hummingbird of 2014 yet?