Migration and Range Maps
Ruby-throated hummingbirds spend the winter months in Central America and Mexico. Each year thousands of Ruby-throated hummingbirds are observed migrating past Hawk Watch locations in Southern Ontario. The adult males leave first in late July with the adult females following next. The immature hummingbirds are the last to leave in September. It is rare for hummingbirds to linger in Ontario after the beginning of October. Some hummingbirds fly straight across the Gulf of Mexico while others follow the western shore through Texas and Mexico. We don't know which migration pathway is preferred by Ontario's hummingbirds. In the spring, hummingbirds reverse their trip and return to the breeding grounds moving north approximately 25-30 kms each day.
Hummingbirds are only found in the western hemisphere, from Alaska to Tierra del Feugo. With approximately 330 species, they are the second largest family of birds in the world. Ruby-throated Hummingbirds are found in North and Central America. They are the only hummingbird species known to breed in Eastern Canada. Previously, it was believed that Ruby-throats only breed in Southern Ontario but the Ontario Breeding Bird Atlas has shown us that they breed much further north. The northern boundary of their breeding range has not been accurately documented yet.
Other excellent range maps:
- Journey North: Ruby-throated and Rufous Hummingbird Distribution