Join for FREE
It only takes a minute!
Magnifying the passion for nature. Zeiss Victory Harpia 95. New!

Welcome to BirdForum.
BirdForum is the net's largest birding community, dedicated to wild birds and birding, and is absolutely FREE! You are most welcome to register for an account, which allows you to take part in lively discussions in the forum, post your pictures in the gallery and more.

Are hummingbirds aggressive with humans?

Reply
 
Thread Tools Rate Thread
Old Tuesday 10th July 2018, 13:30   #1
Fraulein ash
Woodpecker stalker
 
Fraulein ash's Avatar

 
Join Date: Jun 2018
Location: Ny
Posts: 98
Blog Entries: 2
Are hummingbirds aggressive with humans?

We get ruby throated hummingbirds at our house, mostly females but I've definitely seen a male (he does appear to be female unless the light hits it in a certain way, then you can see that he has red on his throat).

One day, my bf and I were standing out on our porch, maybe 6-7 ft away from one of the hummingbird feeders we have... and a hummer zipped in front of my face, danced around briefly whilst chirping, then zipped in front of my bf's face and did the same dance/chirp before he flew off.

Then yesterday, my bf was standing out on the porch in the same area, maybe 7 ft away from the closest feeder, it was probably empty (or close to it), but there was a full one about 15 feet away down in the garden. The bird was perched near the closest (empty) feeder, then he zipped around my bf's head a few times, then flew to the full feeder to get a drink, then zipped back in front of my bf's face and hovered there for a few seconds chirping/dancing, then flew off!


Is this an aggressive move? Is he angry that we're standing close to 'his' feeder? Does he somehow know that we fill the feeders and is 'requesting' that we fill it?? What is going on here??
Fraulein ash is offline  
Reply With Quote
Old Tuesday 10th July 2018, 18:10   #2
Lisa W
Super Moderator
BF Supporter 2018
 
Lisa W's Avatar

 
Join Date: Apr 2006
Location: RV traveling around the U.S.
Posts: 28,293
I have never heard of hummingbirds being aggressive to humans. The hummer was letting you know that the feeder needed attention. And the best way was to come and tell you. I’ve had it happen to me a number of times, feeder needed filling or something else going on - once ants had taken over and the other a praying mantis was on the feeder.
__________________
"A bird doesn't sing because it has an answer, it sings because it has a song" - Joan Walsh Anglund

My birding photos
RV Travel Blog
Lisa W is offline  
Reply With Quote

BF Supporter 2006 2007 2008 2009 2010 2011 2012 2013 2014 2015 2016 2017 2018 Support BirdForum With A Donation

Old Tuesday 10th July 2018, 19:29   #3
KC Foggin
Super Moderator
BF Supporter 2018
 
KC Foggin's Avatar

 
Join Date: Nov 2002
Location: Myrtle Beach SC "Smiling Faces, Beautiful Places"
Posts: 234,754
Ha! I've had a hummer come to the feeder I was holding in my hand and hadn't hung up yet so no, they aren't aggressive towards us humans
__________________
KC a/k/a common KC

Karma - What you send out
Comes right back at ya
KC Foggin is online now  
Reply With Quote

BF Supporter 2004 2005 2006 2007 2008 2009 2010 2011 2012 2013 2014 2015 2016 2017 2018 Support BirdForum With A Donation

Old Tuesday 10th July 2018, 19:44   #4
etudiant
Registered User
BF Supporter 2018

 
Join Date: Nov 2006
Location: New York
Posts: 4,007
Hummers live about 20x faster than people, based on heart rate and life span.
I think they are smart enough to recognize that it is pointless to be aggressive towards anything that slow.
etudiant is offline  
Reply With Quote

BF Supporter 2011 2012 2013 2014 2015 2016 2017 2018 Support BirdForum With A Donation

Old Tuesday 10th July 2018, 20:29   #5
Fraulein ash
Woodpecker stalker
 
Fraulein ash's Avatar

 
Join Date: Jun 2018
Location: Ny
Posts: 98
Blog Entries: 2
Quote:
Originally Posted by Lisa W View Post
I have never heard of hummingbirds being aggressive to humans. The hummer was letting you know that the feeder needed attention. And the best way was to come and tell you. Ive had it happen to me a number of times, feeder needed filling or something else going on - once ants had taken over and the other a praying mantis was on the feeder.


That is A-M-A-Z-I-N-G!!! Wow, I never thought they were smart enough to know that we are in charge of filling the feeders! I'm still learning about birds and I know that a lot of birds are ridiculously smart, but I guess I thought that since their brains were so small they couldn't make the connection. They've probably watched other humans putting the feeders out.


That story about the hummingbird notifying you about the praying mantis on his feeder is absolutely *adorable*. I just love that they trusted you enough to help them with that!! That would take an extra level of thought process/problem solving that I never knew they were capable of. Thanks so much for sharing your story with me :)
Fraulein ash is offline  
Reply With Quote
Old Tuesday 10th July 2018, 20:33   #6
Fraulein ash
Woodpecker stalker
 
Fraulein ash's Avatar

 
Join Date: Jun 2018
Location: Ny
Posts: 98
Blog Entries: 2
Quote:
Originally Posted by KC Foggin View Post
Ha! I've had a hummer come to the feeder I was holding in my hand and hadn't hung up yet so no, they aren't aggressive towards us humans

WOAH!! That's so awesome!! I have several ruby throated hummers that visit, but they always visit the feeder furthest away from us, so I do think they are afraid of us, even though I have read that a lot of hummers are fearless. I'm wondering if certain species are more daring than others? What type of hummer was it that came right to the feeder you were holding??
Fraulein ash is offline  
Reply With Quote
Old Tuesday 10th July 2018, 22:01   #7
KC Foggin
Super Moderator
BF Supporter 2018
 
KC Foggin's Avatar

 
Join Date: Nov 2002
Location: Myrtle Beach SC "Smiling Faces, Beautiful Places"
Posts: 234,754
I finally found the image
Attached Thumbnails
Click image for larger version

Name:	perched hummer.jpg
Views:	39
Size:	377.6 KB
ID:	667907  
__________________
KC a/k/a common KC

Karma - What you send out
Comes right back at ya
KC Foggin is online now  
Reply With Quote

BF Supporter 2004 2005 2006 2007 2008 2009 2010 2011 2012 2013 2014 2015 2016 2017 2018 Support BirdForum With A Donation

Old Wednesday 11th July 2018, 17:04   #8
Fraulein ash
Woodpecker stalker
 
Fraulein ash's Avatar

 
Join Date: Jun 2018
Location: Ny
Posts: 98
Blog Entries: 2
Quote:
Originally Posted by KC Foggin View Post
I finally found the image

He's not just feeding from it before you've placed it, he's sitting ON YOUR HAND!! That's so cool! I wonder why mine are so afraid of us. Maybe they just know you really well?
Fraulein ash is offline  
Reply With Quote
Old Wednesday 11th July 2018, 18:01   #9
KC Foggin
Super Moderator
BF Supporter 2018
 
KC Foggin's Avatar

 
Join Date: Nov 2002
Location: Myrtle Beach SC "Smiling Faces, Beautiful Places"
Posts: 234,754
It shocked the heck out of me
__________________
KC a/k/a common KC

Karma - What you send out
Comes right back at ya
KC Foggin is online now  
Reply With Quote

BF Supporter 2004 2005 2006 2007 2008 2009 2010 2011 2012 2013 2014 2015 2016 2017 2018 Support BirdForum With A Donation

Old Thursday 19th July 2018, 17:12   #10
volcomized
Registered User

 
Join Date: Apr 2017
Location: CA
Posts: 41
In your case, sounds like he was trying to signal to your friend the feeder was low. At my parents' place, they know me to be the main caretaker, even though I'm only there on the weekends. They've even gone so far as to "kindly remind" me when I was sitting in the living room or in the kitchen where you can view the backyard and swayed back and forth to try to get my attention. Each time I thought there was enough, only to discover the feeder was indeed practically empty (seriously, they are so smart).

Now, however, I have personally experienced hostility (borderline aggression) from my current Allen's hummingbird at my place. (Somehow I got stuck with the psychotic hummer at my place—go figure.) Practically from the word "go," he's commandeered the feeder. In the beginning, I tried to shoo him away, just like he did with the other hummers, and then any time I'd go onto the patio, he'd buzz me, like he would the other hummers (feeder was full). Yes, aggressive indeed. After nearly two years together, he's still super unfriendly, but at least I don't get buzzed anymore for walking out onto my own patio. And, earlier this year, I found a dead Anna's female in the planter I attach the feeder to. So, yeah, I have an especially aggressive, uber-territorial Allen's. Lucky me.
volcomized is offline  
Reply With Quote
Advertisement
Reply


Thread Tools
Rate This Thread
Rate This Thread:

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

vB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is Off
HTML code is Off

Similar Threads
Thread Thread Starter Forum Replies Last Post
Are humans really that smart? andyadcock Conservation 9 Thursday 21st June 2018 11:57
Irresponsible humans nudgee Conservation 0 Saturday 7th July 2012 17:14
Any other non-humans out there? Andrew Rowlands Cameras And Photography 1 Monday 21st August 2006 00:24



Fatbirder's Top 1000 Birding Websites

Help support BirdForum

Page generated in 0.13660502 seconds with 22 queries
All times are GMT. The time now is 02:07.