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Magnificent Hummingbird Eugenes fulgens


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Magnificent Hummingbird, male
credit: Mdf/CCSA

© Lang Elliot/ (audio)

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Family: Trochilidae, Hummingbirds view all from this family

Description ADULT MALE Has green back, tail coverts, and tail. Head and underparts usually appear blackish, but just occasionally iridescent violet crown and green gorget catch the light, transforming appearance momentarily; these flashes are often so brief that it is just a case of blinking and you might miss it. ADULT FEMALE Has mainly green upperparts with white tips and dark subterminal band on outer feathers. Underparts are grayish overall, except for pale vent, but streaked on the throat and mottled green elsewhere. Note the dark stripe through the eye and white spot behind it. JUVENILE Similar to adult female, but with more extensive green marbling on underparts and more obvious white malar stripe; soon begins to acquire adult characters.

Dimensions Length: 4 1/2 -5 1/2" (11-14 cm)

Habitat Very locally common summer visitor (mainly Apr-Sep) to upland forests in southwest comprising pine and oak. Winters in Central America, where populations are also resident.

Observation Tips Visit known feeding stations in canyons of southeastern Arizona or southwestern New Mexico to see this species. Fortunately, it often perches in vicinity of feeders, allowing prolonged (for a hummingbird) and good views.

Range Southwest, Rocky Mountains, Texas

Voice Utters a sharp chic, in flight and while perched.

Discussion In good light, males of this stunning hummingbird live up to their name, but in harsh or dull light birds may look uniformly dark when seen from below, making white vent and white spot behind eye appear obvious. Bill is relatively long and tail is slightly forked. Sexes are dissimilar.