Common Name: Anna’s Hummingbird
Scientific Name: Calypte anna
Size: 4 inches (10 cm)
Habitat: West coast from Canada to Mexico, but primarily California. They live in chaparral near open woodland, and urban and suburban areas.
Status: Least Concern. Global Population: 1,500,000 mature individuals. Range is expanding and numbers increasing due to exotic, non-native plants being introduced.
Diet: Pollen and small insects. At times hummingbirds will fly-catch by diving into clouds of gnats.
Breeding: Females construct tiny nests out of leafy material, feathers and are bound together with spider webs. The nests are placed on crotches of branches. Once the nest is completed, the female begins courtship with a male. Unlike most hummingbirds, the Anna’s sings during courtship. After courtship, the male leaves and the female incubates two eggs. She cares for the hatchlings by herself. Young hummingbirds are born naked and blind and fledge after about three weeks.
Cool Facts: The Anna’s Hummingbird was named after the 19th century Italian duchess Anna De Belle Massena. Naturalist, Rene Primevere Lesson, discovered the first specimen and named it after his patron’s name. It is also the largest of the hummingbirds of North America.
The Anna’s hummingbird is the only hummingbird that stays put. Though some winter in Mexico and some travel as far as Canada, most Anna’s Hummingbirds stay year round in California.
Mishaps can occur trying to get lunch… bees and wasps may become impaled on the bill, causing the bird to starve to death.
The male Anna’s hummingbird is extremely territorial.