Tiny, iridescent hummingbirds can be an exciting addition to
your backyard wildlife. If hummingbirds live in your area,
can attract them by planting red, tubular flowers. There
are many red-flowered plants to choose from. Over 160
native North American plants depend exclusively on
hummingbirds for pollination. Many of the red-flowered
annuals, perennials, vines, and shrubs available from mail
order sources or local garden centers have been developed
from the native red-flowered plants of the western
There are extensive plantings of native Missouri wildflowers
at Lakeside Nature Center. You will see hummingbirds
feeding all summer long
The smallest bird in the world, the Cuban bee hummingbird is
2 1/4” long – about the size of a bumble bee.
Hummingbirds, like helicopters, can hover. They can also
move ahead, sideways or backward at will.
A ruby-throated hummingbird, (most commonly seen hummingbird
in MO) weighing about one tenth of an ounce, can travel 600
miles in migration.
Hummingbirds not only sip nectar, but also eat tiny insects
and spiders. They may drink up to eight times their body
weight daily in water.
Although their normal body temperature is about 103º F (40º
C) it may drop to 70º at night. They have the ability to
endure temporary cool weather or cool nights by becoming
There are 340 species of hummingbirds in the world and all
are found only in the western hemisphere. Of these, only
one, the ruby-throated hummingbird, is found regularly in
List of plants for attracting