How Fast Do Hummingbirds Fly?

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Hummingbirds can fly as fast as 60 miles per hour during courtship displays, but their average flying speed is closer to 30 miles per hour. Learn more about the flying patterns of hummingbirds with information from a national wildlife steward in this free video on bird life.

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Video Transcript

Hello my name is Barbara Dewitt. I'm a National Wildlife Federation Stewart with The Broward County Audubon Society. Hummingbirds fly about 30 miles per hour but when they're in courtship display, they'll do looping displays. Each individual species does a different display so you can actually tell which specie it is by the looping display it does and it's the male is displaying for the female and saying here I am, look at me, aren't I pretty? So they'll do that before they mate and she will pick whichever male she likes and that's up to 63 miles per hour. They also fly when they're flying over the and migrating from the United States over the gulf, they fly as high as, they can fly over the waves, just over the waves, or as high as 500 feet. And they're very small. The ruby throated that are migrating from the north here and up in Canada and coming down so they'll drink a lot of nectar and have a lot of insects and eat them before they go over the water because they have so many miles, they have 500 miles to go before they get to the coast of Mexico where they'll be spending the winters. And even then, some of those stop there and they go even farther south so they fuel up again when they hit the coast of Central America. And hummingbirds in South America some of them are larger. There's over 50 species that are in Ecuador itself, the largest one being the giant hummingbird.

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