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picture by cbede

Appearance

Do you know what Flying Jewels are? I do, the hummingbird is a beautiful tiny bird. Hummingbirds are known as Flying Jewels because of their magnificent feathers that shimmer like polished jewels in the sun. To make the beautiful colours on their wings there are super tiny air bubbles that when the sun shines on their wings it makes colours.
Hummingbirds have velvet black wings, shimmering crests, and shinny throats.

The largest hummingbird is about eight and a half inches, in other words twenty-one cm. The name of this bird is the Gaint Hummingbird. Now, hummingbirds are tiny on their own, but there is still the tiniest, and that guy is about two inches or five cms. This hummingbird is know as the Bee Hummingbird.

If you find a dull looking hummingbird it is a female, but they still have some colour, and of course boys are still brighter.
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Habitat

Hummingbirds are beautiful birds that just happen to live here. To be exact, we have four different species of hummingbirds here. Most hummingbirds love to live in Canada because of all our forests and the flowers they eat.

The Rufous Hummingbird lives from north British Columbia to the Queen Charlotte Islands.

Most of the time, like any bird, the girl builds the nest and uses cob webs, plant down, fluff from cat kin, and cat tails. Some places hummingbirds like for nesting places are deciduous trees or little shrubs. They like their nests to be at least three to ten feet off the ground.
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Diet

Hummingbirds prefer to fly when eating or drinking. I bet you've seen a hummingbird eating out of a hummingbird feeder. I find it interesting how when they're out in the forest and are thirsty they fly over a lake or ocean open their bill, and sip up the water.

Hummingbirds are easily attracted to bright flowers. The flowers they like are long and sort of like trumpets, so they have to stick their bill in and with it's long tongue licks the nectar like a kitten.

Hummingbirds sometimes stock woodpeckers so when they leave they can get any little bugs left behind or sap.

Finally, the last thing about their diet is their favorite flowers are, bright red, bright orange, and bright green flowers.
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Predators

Hummingbirds might move fast, but they still have things that can get them. Two of the most common predators are Hawks and Eagles. Hawks and Eagles catch hummingbirds the exact same way. They sneak up behind the fast bird so quietly that they will only hear the sound from their own wings. Before the poor bird even notices the Hawk or Eagle attacks. With one slash of their deadly talons bye-bye birdy.

Now this might be a shocker, but even bigger insects like to eat hummingbirds! The pack of hungry bugs travel together and stock the bird until they have it in a good place to attack and, BOOM! The creepy crawls just got their meal. The type of bug that hunts like this is the Praying Mantis.

Spiders eat hummingbirds, creepy! Hummingbirds get tricked just like flies. One mistake with a spiders web is most likely to be the birds last.
Now, fish eat hummingbirds too! When going for a drink, snap the fish just got it's meal.
Yes, hummingbirds have a lot of enemies.
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Offspring

Like ever bird there is a certain amount of time for the hummingbird's eggs to hatch. It takes exactly sixteen days for the eggs to hatch. The mama always has two eggs and they are shaped like huge white peas.
When they are born the are fully naked except for one feather on top of their head.
Five days after they're born they finally open their eyes.
Baby hummingbirds are called peeps because when they are born they only say " Peep, peep!" and it often gets annoying.
Twenty one day after, the peeps become adult birds and leave the nest, but still get food from the mom, almost like room service.
I think peeps are, CUTE!
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Adaptions

The hummingbird likes to have small wings because it helps them move faster for migrating and for getting away from predators. The hummingbird is one of the fastest birds in the world. This bird can flap 230 times in less than a minute. Hummingbirds wings are good for another reason too, if the bird is being stocked by a predator and if it notices its is being stocked they will fly upside down backward and forward or right side up backward and forward to confuse the predator. He will be so fast that his predator will not know where he went.

The hummingbird is the only bird with a bill because of the trumpet like flowers he gets nectar from.

Hummingbirds are bright like parrots to camouflage in the bright places he lives in.

Since hummingbirds are so small and burn off a lot of energy they have to eat twice as much as their body weight.

I think hummingbirds' adaptations are awesome!
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Cool Facts

Over the weeks that I have been studying the hummingbird, I could not believe how cool they are! The first cool thing about them I want to tell you is that unlike most birds, females are almost as colorful as males, but her colors are most likely bright green, and a dull brown. A males colors can be anything bright.
Next thing I'm going to tell you is an interesting way that males get their mates. The first step they do is find a good place filled with females and pollen. Then they get pollen all over their body and marks their territory. Before you know it, the mans got a girl.

Almost everyone knows that hummingbirds are tiny, so tiny that long, long, about fifty more longs, ago people thought that hummingbirds were too small too migrate. Hummingbirds migrate wherever its warm, but they still survive migrating.

Hummingbirds are very shy and hard to attract without a hummingbird feeder. One part is sugar, one part is water, that makes a sweet and sticky syrup that they love.

Now this is the coolest fact of all, hummingbirds use speed to confuse their own type. In battle, or if a girl does not want a boy around her, she will confuse him and leave. Do you agree with me that humming birds are, AWESOME!


References

http://www.allaboutbirds.org/guide/rufous_hummingbird/lifehistory
http://howtoenjoyhummingbirds.com/Rufous%20Hummingbird.htm
Quesada Tyrrell, Esther. Hummingbirds. New York: Crown Publishers, 1992.
Canadian Wildlife Service. Ruby-throated Hummingbird. Ottawa: Distribution Section Canadian Wildlife Servive, 1984.
Nault, William H. World Book Encyclopedia vol. H. Toronto: World Book Inc, 1996.