Anna's Hummingbirds (Calypte anna) are probably the most common species of hummingbird found at our Tucson hummingbird feeders during the winter. I observed this one at my front courtyard hummingbird feeder a couple of days before Christmas in 2005.
This Anna's Hummingbird is easily identified as a male because he has an iridescent rosy red gorget (throat) and forehead.
The females are plainer and lack the males' colorful gorgets. Both the males and females have metallic green topsides and pale grayish undersides.
Male Anna's Hummingbirds are very territorial, and they will aggressively guard hummingbird feeders from all other hummingbirds. For a hummingbird, Male Anna's Hummingbirds are surprisingly vocal. They not only have a loud repeated chase call used when driving away other hummingbirds, the males also have a horribly squeaky, scratchy "song" that they will repeat over and over. I find their simple, repetitious songs to be very annoying because they easily get stuck in my head like the most insidious of earworms, and I will even find myself whistling that squeaky song through my teeth.
After I took the above photos, the cheeky little Anna's Hummingbird perched just over my head in the tree and sang that infectious song repeatedly. There were no other hummingbirds around, so perhaps he was telling me that this was his territory and not mine. As he was singing, I felt something splatter on my hand. He pooped on me! I got the message and moved away from his hummingbird feeder.
Southern Arizona is a great place to watch hummingbirds because of the wide variety of hummingbird species that can be seen here. There are 18 different species of hummingbirds found here in Arizona, and I have seen 8 of them in my yard here in Tucson.
Hummingbirds observed at my hummingbird feeders:
- Anna's Hummingbird (Calypte anna)
- Black-chinned Hummingbird (Archilochus alexandri)
- Blue-throated Hummingbird (Lampornis clemenciae)
- Broad-billed Hummingbird (Cynanthus latirostris)
- Broad-tailed Hummingbird (Selasphorus platycercus)
- Calliope Hummingbird (Stellula calliope)
- Costa's Hummingbird (Calypte costae)
- Rufous Hummingbird (Selasphorus rufus)