There’s only a handful of hummingbird species in Georgia, most of them passing through during migration season.
Hummingbirds are a highly-mobile family of birds and they often wander far away during migration, but most of these birds aren’t native and don’t stay in Georgia permanently, so they’re very rarely seen.
In today’s article, we’ll be taking a look at 5 hummingbirds in Georgia.
- Green-breasted Mangos
- Calliope Hummingbirds
- Ruby-throated Hummingbirds
- Anna’s Hummingbirds
- Rufous Hummingbirds
Note: The hummingbirds are rated in no particular order.
1. Green-breasted Mangos
Scientific name: Anthracothorax prevostii
This species of hummingbird is not common in Georgia – in fact, it’s not common in the US at all.
However, a sighting of a juvenile was documented in 2007, indicating that their migration range is so wide that they might occur in the US every now and then.
They can be easily recognized by their glossy green color, while the throat and chest are mostly black. Tail feathers are often red or orange. The birds are rarely larger than 4 inches.
2. Calliope Hummingbirds
Scientific name: Selasphorus calliope
These hummingbirds are highly migratory, and although they’re usually found near the Rocky Mountains, it covers great distances during spring and summer, so they’re often spotted in the far west, as well as Central America and East Coast.
Although they feed on nectar, unlike most hummingbirds, they’ll also eat small insects and spiders.
Calliope hummingbirds are recognized by their glossy green backs and white underparts, not dissimilar from the rufous hummingbird.
3. Ruby-throated Hummingbirds
Scientific name: Archilochus colubris
The only species of hummingbird often seen in Georgia, ruby-throated hummingbirds can be recognized by the male’s ruby-colored neck markings.
Both males and females have metallic green coloring on the back and on the wings.
These types of hummingbirds in Georgia can be easily attracted to the backyard with nectar feeders, which is their primary source of nutrients. Just like other hummingbirds, they migrate over great distances, up to 500 miles.
4. Anna’s Hummingbirds
Scientific name: Calypte anna
Anna’s hummingbirds are natives of the West Coast, but these highly migratory birds often visit the East Coast, including Georgia, during the spring. They have previously been seen in Georgia and other eastern states.
They’re often considered to be some of the most beautiful hummingbirds because of the male’s stark plumage contrast. While the body is mostly dark, the male’s head is strikingly purple and iridescent.
Aside from eating nectar, they often catch flying insects.
5. Rufous Hummingbirds
Scientific name: Selasphorus rufus
Often found on the southeastern coast during the summer, rufous hummingbirds are characterized by their rufous faces. The chest is white, while the back is green or black.
Females are actually larger than males, reaching 3.5 inches, but they lack the rufous face so they’re easy to tell apart.
Juveniles are basically indistinguishable from Allen’s hummingbirds, although they don’t share the same habitat and the latter doesn’t occur in Georgia.
Georgia isn’t as rich and diverse when it comes to hummingbirds in comparison to more western states. Most species that occur in Georgia are seen very rarely, usually during migration.
However, ruby-throated and rufous hummingbirds are somewhat more often and can be spotted in the wild during the spring and the summer.