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This is a smaller-sized hummingbird. Adult females are about 3 inches in length. It has rufous (red/orange) undersides, including breast, flanks, and tail down to a darker black band, as pictured. The neck/gorget is speckled with at times some irregular orange spots.
These birds were spotted on Antelope Island State Park in the Great Salt Lake, Utah. The island is 42 square miles in area and the largest of all islands in the Great Salt Lake. It has grassland on the north, east and south…with a mountainous central area. These birds were on the east side of the island at the Fielding Garr Ranch. This is their summer habitat. They migrate south into Mexico in the winter.
Watching these birds is like watching a military air show and dogfight in a confined space. Their aerobatics, as shown in the above photos, know no bounds. Hummingbirds are the only birds in the world that can fly backward, upside down, hover in place, or straight up or down. They have to consume more than their body weight every day just to maintain their metabolism. The only time they sit still for an extended period is when they sleep at night…going into a catatonic state called Torpor. This is a deep sleep, in which their metabolism lowers to one-fifteenth of normal. Those pictured were all females…not once did I spot a male that day on the island.