A small nectar-feeding tropical American bird that is able to hover and fly backward, typically having colorful iridescent plumage.
- Family Trochilidae: many genera and numerous species, including the ruby-throated hummingbird (Archilochus colubris) of the eastern US, and the red-crowned Anna’s hummingbird (Calypte anna), found chiefly along the Pacific coast of the US.
- Without the ability to hover, hummingbirds would not be able to obtain nectar from flowers.
- Like other birds, hummingbirds communicate through both auditory and visual signals.
- The principal characteristic that sets hummingbirds apart from all other birds is their mode of flight.
Mid 17th century: so named because of the humming sound produced by the rapid vibration of the bird's wings.
For editors and proofreaders
Definition of hummingbird in:
What do you find interesting about this word or phrase?
Comments that don't adhere to our Community Guidelines may be moderated or removed.