Black-chinned Hummingbird (Archilochus alexandri)

Black-chinned Hummingbird

[order] APODIFORMES | [family] Trochilidae | [latin] Archilochus alexandri | [UK] Black-chinned Hummingbird | [FR] Colibri a gorge noire | [DE] Schwarzkinnkolibri | [ES] Colibri Gorginegro | [NL] Zwartkinkolibrie


Genus Species subspecies Breeding Range Breeding Range 2 Non Breeding Range
Calypte alexandri
Archilochus alexandri NA w, sw w Mexico

Physical charateristics

Male: Note the black throat and conspicuous white collar. The blue-violet of the lower throat shows only in certain lights. Throats of other hummers may look black until they catch the light.
b Female: Greenish above, whitish below. Cannot safely be told in field from female Costa’s or Ruby-throat.

Listen to the sound of Black-chinned Hummingbird

[audio: Hummingbird.mp3]

Copyright remark: Most sounds derived from xeno-canto

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North America : West, Southwest


Semi-arid country, river groves, chaparral, suburbs.
Breeds in many kinds of semi-open country in the lowlands, including streamsides, towns, brushy areas, open woods, oak groves in canyons. In the Southwest, avoids most open desert, but may be found along dense washes or desert rivers. After breeding, may
move to higher elevations in mountains.


In courtship, male performs “pendulum” display, flying back and forth in wide U-shaped arc, making whirring sound on each dive. Also buzzes back and forth in short passes in front of perched female.
Nest: Site is in tree or shrub (usually deciduous), typically 4-
8′ above ground, sometimes lower or higher (up to 30′). Placed on horizontal or sloping branch. Nest (built by female) is a deep cup of plant down and plant fibers, held together with spider webs, the outside camouflaged with dead leaves and other debris.

Eggs: 2, sometimes 1-3. White. Incubation is by female only, 13-16 days.
Young: Female feeds young by inserting her bill deep into their throats, then regurgitating food. Nest gradually stretches as young grow. Age of young at first flight about 20-21 days. Usually 1-
2 broods per year, sometimes 3. Female may begin building second nest while still feeding fledglings from the first.

Feeding habits

Mostly nectar and small insects. Feeds on nectar of flowers, also oozing sap and substitutes such as sugar-water. Also eats many small insects and spiders.
Behavior: Feeds by hovering and inserting it
s bill in flowers to take nectar. Will also hover and perch at hummingbird feeders, and visits holes drilled in tree bark by sapsuckers to feed on sap. Flies out from a perch to take insects in the air or from foliage, and will take small spiders from the
ir webs.


This species has an extremely large range, and hence does not 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). The population trend appears to be increasing, and hence the species does not approach the thresholds for Vulnerable under the population trend criterion (>30% decline over ten years or three generations). The population size is extremely 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.
Black-chinned Hummingbird status Least Concern


Western United States, northern Mexico.
Strictly migratory, arriving in spring and leaving in fall, virtually never remaining to winter in western United States. Almost all go to Mexico for winter. Very small numbers stray east in fall, and a few may winter near Gulf Coast.

Distribution map

Black-chinned Hummingbird distribution range map

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