Trying to identify the hummingbird zipping around your yard?
Hummingbirds are one of the most fascinating creatures that you can find in your backyard. It really helps to know what species of hummingbirds live in Virginia.
While the list below contains all the usual hummingbirds found in Virginia, it’s possible to find a vagrant species of hummingbird that’s not native to Virginia. This is rare but not unheard of.
The following legend can be used for each hummingbird species map to determine what time of year you can see each hummingbird in your area.
The 3 Hummingbird Species of Virginia
Size: 3.2 – 3.6 in (8-9 cm)
This small but territorial hummingbird has a medium-short to medium black bill and an extensive rufous plumage. It was named after the Californian bird collector, Charles A. Allen. Allen’s hummingbird has the most restricted breeding ranges of all native North American hummingbirds. Though their habitat has been altered by humans, they’ve adapted well to urban and suburban environments – zipping from feeder to feeder. In their natural environment, they use native plant species such as honeysuckle, bush-monkeyflower, and fuchsia-flowered gooseberry for their nectar needs.
How to Identify
The Allen’s Hummingbird is very difficult to distinguish from the Rufous Hummingbird. In fact, the female and immature males of both species are pretty much indistinguishable. In the adult male, the Allen’s Hummingbird has a green back and rump, but a rufous tail, and the Rufous Hummingbird usually has a rufous back, rump and tail. That’s the easiest way to distinguish the two.
Allen’s Hummingbird Range & Migration Map
The range of Allen’s Hummingbid is one of the smallest and restrictive of all North American Hummingbirds. They’re a common summer resident of northern coastal California and southern Oregon and a year-long resident of southern Californa. During migratory season, can be found in Arizona and even New Mexico.
Size: 3.25 – 3.75 in (8.5 – 9.5cm)
The ruby-throated hummingbird is one of the most commonly found hummingbirds of the United States. In fact, it’s the only one that breeds east of the Mississippi River. To reach these eastern breeding grounds, the Ruby-Throated Hummingbird takes a perilous route of flying over 500 miles non-stop over the Gulf of Mexico.
How to Identify
This hummingbird is on the smaller side. The male sports a handsome scarlet gorget and a black chin strap which distinguishes it from the Anna’s and Broad-Tailed hummingbirds.
Ruby-Throated Hummingbird Range & Migration Map
The Ruby-Throated hummingbird breeds in eastern United States and prefers hardwood, pine and mixed forests starting in the spring and retreats to Mexico in the winter.
Size: 3.5 – 4in (9 – 10cm)
The Rufous Hummingbird breeds farther north than any other hummingbird in the United States. It’s an aggressive species which makes it an unwelcome guest among hummingbird feeders. This hummingbird is an important part of the Pacific Northwest ecosystem, acting as a pollinator where the insects are at a disadvantage due to their cold-bloodedness.
How to Identify
The most distinguishing feature of the Rufous Hummingbird is the male’s rufous gorget that’s hard to miss. It’s a relatively small hummingbird with a short black bill. With the rufous plumage and aggressive behaviour, you’ll have no problem identifying male Rufous Hummingbirds.
Rufous Hummingbird Range & Migration Map
The Rufous Hummingbird breeds from the southeastern tip of Alaska down to the northern most parts of California, going as far east as Montana. During the winter, it migrates down to the Gulf of Mexico states.
How to Attract Virginia Hummingbirds to Your Yard
Want to see more hummingbirds in your backyard?
We have all the information you need on our site to help you do that. First, we recommend you read our guide on how to attract hummingbirds to your yard. That’ll give you the basics of what’s required to attract hummingbirds.
Then, we’d recommend reading our buyer’s guide on choosing the best hummingbird feeder. Setting up a hummingbird feeder or two is the best way to guarantee that hummingbirds will visit your yard.
There are a bunch of other ways to attract hummingbirds such as getting a bird bath and planting native flowers that attract hummingbirds.
All State Hummingbirds
Want to see what hummingbirds species are found in other states? Here’s our complete list of hummingbirds found in each state: