8 Hummingbirds in Wisconsin (ID Guide & Pictures)


Wisconsin is home to eight types of hummingbirds, including some of the most common species in North America. 

Although only a few of them nest there, many hummingbirds migrate through the state and you can spot them if you’re lucky enough.

In today’s article, we’ll take a closer look at their habits to see where you can find and how to attract hummingbirds of Wisconsin.

  • Anna’s Hummingbirds
  • Mexican Violetears
  • Green-breasted Mangos
  • Ruby-throated Hummingbirds
  • Rufous Hummingbirds
  • Broad-billed Hummingbirds
  • Buff-bellied Hummingbirds
  • Allen’s Hummingbirds

Note: The hummingbirds are ranked in no particular order.

1. Anna’s Hummingbirds

Scientific name: Calypte anna

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These hummingbirds are one of the more common hummingbirds in Wisconsin. Males can be easily recognized because of the magenta head on top of a dark grey body with metallic green wings, while females are entirely grey and dark green.

Anna’s hummingbirds are the northernmost hummingbirds in the world – some of them actually stay in cold areas, such as Wisconsin, during the winter.

They convert sugar to fat and gain weight by doing so, which helps them survive freezing temperatures.

2. Mexican Violetears

Scientific name: Colibri thalassinus 

Mexican violetears are not often seen in Wisconsin and their presence is purely accidental. They normally reside in Mexico and in a few pockets in Texas, Arizona, and New Mexico.

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They’re entirely green with blue streaks on the cheeks, growing up to 4.7 inches in length, making them large hummingbirds. In the wild, they usually stay near forest borders and in scrubs, while they prefer humid areas to dry areas.

Since they primarily feed on nectar, these bids thrive in deforested areas.

3. Green-breasted Mangos

Scientific name: Anthracothorax prevostii

Another type of hummingbird that only appears on occasion, green-breasted mangos are very similar to Mexican violetears. They’re mostly metallic green, but they have a blue chest and throat, while the outer feathers of the male’s tail are often red.

Although their natural territory is restricted to Central America – they’re often migrating to areas in the north.

In these instances, they’re drawn to bird feeders – one mango was spotted in the city of Beloit where it spent months feeding on nectar from bird feeders.

4. Ruby-throated Hummingbirds

Scientific name: Archilochus colubris

These types of hummingbirds in Wisconsin are the most widespread hummingbird species in all of North America. They’re the only hummingbird species that can be found in every corner of the state.

The males can be recognized by their ruby-colored throats atop their gray chest. The head is black while the wings are metallic green. Females don’t develop the iridescent red coloring of the throat and remain entirely grey and metallic green.

They’re often seen in orchards and gardens, while they’re also easily attracted to bird feeders. The chances of spotting this hummingbird in Wisconsin are very high.

5. Rufous Hummingbirds

Scientific name: Selasphorus rufus

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There are fewer than eight reported sightings of the rufous hummingbird per year in Wisconsin, which means that they nest in the Badger State, but their numbers are not great.

Rufous hummingbirds prefer the Canadian West Coast, as well as Mexico and the American Gulf Shore.

The male can be recognized because of its distinctly orange-colored head atop a white chest. Females, however, don’t develop the same copper color. Their wings and head are darker and less lively.

Females are often confused with Allen’s hummingbirds, so not all reported sightings can be trusted.

6. Broad-billed Hummingbirds

Scientific name: Cynanthus latirostris

The broad-billed hummingbird has metallic blue and green pelage, while the wings are black. Adult females aren’t as colorful, as their bellies are pale. Both the male and the female have a long pink beak with a black tip.

This hummingbird can be attracted to sugar-water bird feeders, while they’re naturally more attracted to red and yellow flowers than flowers of other colors.

7. Buff-bellied Hummingbirds

Scientific name: Amazilia yucatanensis

Out of all the hummingbirds found in Wisconsin, the buff-bellied hummingbird might be the rarest one as there’s only one registered sighting every five years.

These birds are usually found in Mexico, the Gulf Coast, and parts of Central America. However, they migrate often and they cross great distances during these trips, so they can still be seen in more northern areas.

The belly is mostly brown and grey, while the head, back, and wings are all metallic green. Buff-bellied hummingbirds also have a long pink beak with a black tip.

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8. Allen’s Hummingbirds

Scientific name: Selasphorus sasin

Very similar to the rufous hummingbird, Allen’s hummingbird dons the same copper color. The chest is usually white, while the throat is an iridescent shade of orange. The male’s wings are often iridescent too, but with a green glare.

Since their natural habitat is mostly restricted to the West Coast, these hummingbirds arrive in Wisconsin through migration. They’re highly territorial and they will protect a source of food from other birds if threatened.

To Sum Up

Wisconsin is home to only a few hummingbirds throughout the entire year, while it’s often a migrating destination for birds native to warmer areas. Out of these eight species, the ruby-throated hummingbird is the most common out of all  Wisconsin hummingbirds.

These birds can be attracted by nectar-filled birdfeeders and most of them aren’t afraid to get close to humans.

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Want more birds in your backyard? Get simple tips on attracting feathered friends and maximizing your bird feeding setup. Our free cheat sheet has got you covered!
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James Goodman

James is a native Texan with a love for birding and outdoor adventures. When he's not birdwatching, you can find him hiking, camping or playing the piano.

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