Hummingbirds are the smallest birds in the world and one of the most desired to be seen species. They were given the name ‘hummingbirds’ because they have wings that flap at extraordinary frequencies, and as a result produce a humming sound. What is amazing about these birds is that they can fly left, right, up, down, upside down and even backward. These birds have a special bill that is used to get nectar from tubular and long flowers. There are thousands of humming species around the globe according to scientists. However, some of them now face extinction. This list contains six unique species of hummingbirds.
Rare White Hummingbird
Most hummingbirds are known to have different colored feathers. However, what makes this bird unique is that it is entirely white. There is not much information about this particular bird except for it has a developmental condition and leucism that makes it lose its coloring. Leucistic birds have the inability to deposit melanin into their feathers although they can produce the pigment. Only this bird has black eyes, so it’s different from other albino birds that have red eyes.
The Marvellous Spatuletail hummingbird was declared rare in the year 2000 by the world conservation union. It is unique in that it has four tail feathers only. The tail of the male adult was found to be twice as long as its body. What is more phenomenal is that the tail of this bird ends in a spoon-shaped spatula with a purple gloss. According to some Ornithologists, the males compete for females through whirling their tails around their bodies. This behavior is one the strangest phenomenon in the hummingbird world. More so, the males attack each other often in the air, contorting their tails and bodies into odd shapes at high speed.
The Colourful Puffleg
These hummingbirds are mostly found in South America. Its population is about 250 birds, and they are the top most endangered species listed by BirdLife International. They have colorful pufflegs that are 8cm in length and short, straight black bills. They also have pink feet and white-eyed spots. The adult male has a mostly dark green plumage, blue abdomen, and under tail feathers that are coppery-gold. The females have a white throat, golden spots on the abdomen and tiny white puffy legs.
Juan Fernández Firecrown
This hummingbird is found only on Isla Robinson Crusoe in Chile and they show a high degree of sexual dimorphism. The males are 11.5 cm long and weigh 10.9g, while the females weigh 6.8g and are 10cm in height. The reasons for its endangered status include habitat loss, predation by mammals and competition. This hummingbird’s habitats are gardens, thickets, and forests and they feed on nectar, the abutilon, eucalyptus and insects. Fewer than 200 of these birds still exist today.
The Turquoise-Throated Puffleg resides in Ecuador and is one of the most endangered species, with a population of about 49. Its endangered status is attributed to a destroyed habitat. Its body is mostly covered with green feathers and it has legs with white powder-puff feathers. The males are covered with purplish feathers and are about 11cm long. Both the male and the female have an under tail that is violet blue. Its bill is straight and black in color. The main under and upper parts are golden green in males.
The Black-Breasted Puffleg is considered endangered with a population of about 180 birds around the globe. This bird is about 8cm long and sexually dimorphic. The males have black upper and underparts. On the other hand, the female has golden-green underparts and bronze green above. Both the males and the females have a black bill that is straight and white puffy legs.
In conclusion, every human being should take the responsibility of ensuring that the ecosystem is maintained for these hummingbirds to survive. Some of them have reduced in number because of settlements invading their habitats. The scientists should draw attention to the world to ensure that these beautiful birds are in existence for generations to come.