Allens Hummingbird (Selasphorus sasin)

Allens Hummingbird

[order] APODIFORMES | [family] Trochilidae | [latin] Selasphorus sasin | [UK] Allens Hummingbird | [FR] Colibri d’Allen | [DE] Allenkolibri | [ES] Colibri de Allen | [NL] Allens Kolibrie


Genus Species subspecies Breeding Range Breeding Range 2 Non Breeding Range
Selasphorus sasin NA w c Mexico
Selasphorus sasin sasin s Oregon and California (USA) to sc Mexico
Selasphorus sasin sedentarius islands off s California (USA)

Physical charateristics

Male: Like the Rufous Hummingbird ( rufous sides, rump, tail, and cheeks; fiery throat), but the back is green.b Female:
Indistinguishable in the field from the female Rufous (in the hand, Allen’s has narrower outer tail feathers).

Listen to the sound of Allens Hummingbird

[audio: Hummingbird.mp3]

Copyright remark: Most sounds derived from xeno-canto

wingspan min.: 0 cm wingspan max.: 0 cm
size min.: 8 cm size max.: 10 cm
incubation min.: 15 days incubation max.: 22 days
fledging min.: 22 days fledging max.: 25 days
broods: 2   eggs min.: 2  
      eggs max.: 3  


North America : West


Wooded or brushy canyons, parks, gardens, also mountain meadows.
Breeds in a variety of semi-open habitats, including open oak woods, streamside groves, well-wooded suburbs, city parks. Winters mostly in foothill and mountain forest in Mexico. Migrants may occur in high mountain meadows in late summer.


Male’s courtship display flight is in J-shaped pattern: flying high, diving steeply with metallic whine at bottom of dive, then curving up to hover at moderate height; often preceded by back-and-forth pendulum flight in front of female.
Site is in tree or shrub, rarely in weed stalks, usually low (but up to 90′ above ground), on horizontal or diagonal branch. Nest (built by female) is a neatly constructed cup of green mosses and plant fibers, lined with plant down, the outside camouflag
ed with pieces of lichen, held together with spider webs. May recondition and reuse old nest.
Eggs: 2. White. Incubation by female only, 17-22 days.
Young: Female feeds young by inserting bill deep into open mouth of nestling; probably feeds young mostly on insects. Nest gradually stretches as young birds grow. Age of young at first flight about 22-25 days.

Feeding habits

Mostly nectar and small insects.
Consumes nectar from flowers, especially red tubular flowers such as penstemons, red monkeyflowers, red columbines, paintbrush, scarlet sage, others; also many other flowers, such as those of tree-tobacco. Also feeds on sug
ar-water and flowing sap. Eats many small insects and spiders.
Takes nectar while hovering in front of flowers; will also perch momentarily to feed if perches are convenient. Catches insects in midair or takes them from foliage. Commonly visits hummingbird feeders to take sugar-water.


Although this species may have a restricted range, it is not believed to approach the thresholds for Vulnerable under the range size criterion (Extent of Occurrence <20,000 km2 combined with a declining or fluctuating range size, habitat extent/quality, or population size and a small number of locations or severe fragmentation). Despite the fact that the population trend appears to be decreasing, the decline is not believed to be sufficiently rapid to approach the thresholds for Vulnerable under the population trend criterion (>30% decline over ten years or three generations). The population size is very large, and hence does not approach the thresholds for Vulnerable under the population size criterion (<10,000 mature individuals with a continuing decline estimated to be >10% in ten years or three generations, or with a specified population structure). For these reasons the species is evaluated as Least Concern.
Allens Hummingbird status Least Concern


Breeds in coastal California; winters mostly in Mexico.
b Migration:
Moves north up Pacific Coast in late winter; at least some go south through mountains in late summer. Tends to migrate a little earlier than Rufous Hummingbird. Population on California’s Channel Islands and nearby mainland is non-migratory.

Distribution map

Allens Hummingbird distribution range map

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