The autumn hummingbird migration south from components of Canada and the US begins as temperatures begin to cool. When it begins is determined by the placement and the way far they should journey. Discover out what to anticipate as these tiny birds make the lengthy, solo flights to their winter properties.

Need to comply with the journey north? See the spring hummingbird migration map right here.

Fall hummingbird migration map for the United States and Canada.

Hummingbird Fall Migration

Various hummingbirds in flight.

When do hummingbirds begin making their journey south for the winter?

It relies upon completely on their summer time location and the way far they should go. With the change of the seasons, their major meals sources—bugs for protein and flower nectar for carbs—grow to be scarce and that indicators it’s time to go to hotter areas.

Hummingbirds are discovered within the Americas all the best way to Alaska, via components of Canada and the US, to the southern tip of South America, and the Caribbean as nicely.

Some hummingbirds in hotter climates by no means migrate for mating season. Others make the journey north to spend the summer time in numerous components of the US and Canada.

Not like the spring migration the place you begin noticing hummingbirds arriving within the backyard, their departure in fall takes observations over time. Someday you suppose, I haven’t seen a hummingbird in a number of days or extra—and sooner or later you notice they will need to have moved on.


Annual Migrations

Spring Migration

One fascinating truth most individuals don’t know is that whereas we consider birds migrating in flocks, hummingbirds really journey solo. Sure, they’re migrating on the identical schedule—as a result of circumstances are proper—however they don’t journey in teams. If you concentrate on it, it’s fairly a feat for such tiny birds!

The spring hummingbird migration map right here is helpful for understanding arrival dates annually.

Should you stay on a migration route in the US, the additional south you’re, the sooner they arrive in spring. For a lot of, that is a while between February and April.

The place we stay in Ontario, Canada, the primary spring arrivals seem in late April and early Could. Some will probably be simply passing via. Others will keep and lift their younger.

Fall Migration

After spending the summer time mating season in northern areas, with winter looming, late summer time and fall is the time for hummingbirds to make the lengthy journey south as soon as once more.

Even hummingbirds just some months outdated, born within the north in the course of the summer time months, will make this lengthy solo journey south. So how do these children even know their manner? Nobody is aware of! Science has a lot to find out about these great birds.


Once they go will rely upon the place you reside and the way far they should go. This can be throughout August, September, October, or November, relying on location.

Until we see hummingbirds day-after-day within the backyard, we could not discover they’ve left till many days or even weeks of absence.

It’s at all times bittersweet to say farewell however their return within the new 12 months is a most welcome signal of spring.

For researchers, it isn’t simple to trace these birds—particularly in the course of the fall migration—however, from what we all know, they don’t essentially take the identical route south in fall that introduced them north in spring—and that’s why there isn’t a monitoring map. It’s a completely totally different journey.

Feeding Hummingbirds in Fall

Hummingbird and map of North America.

Whereas some hummingbirds within the Western United States don’t migrate, most of our ruby-throated hummingbirds will make the lengthy trek south each fall—beginning round Labor Day in early September—all the best way to Mexico and Central America, the place meals will probably be way more ample over the winter.

For us in southwestern Ontario, the final ones cross by in mid-October, simply forward of first frosts. For these in United States, sightings will proceed till winter temperatures set in.

Will feeding hummingbirds in fall delay migration?

Offering sugar water for hummingbirds in fall won’t delay migration. The truth is, it will possibly assist present further power for his or her lengthy journey south to their winter habitat.

For years it was believed that offering nectar (sugar water) feeders (or birdseed for different migrating birds) could also be dangerous in autumn, attractive the birds to remain on till it’s too late to go south.

At this time, it’s thought that offering this supplemental meals supply merely helps them gasoline up for his or her journey and won’t delay them.

The principle staple of a hummingbird’s weight loss plan is protein-rich invertebrates.

The principle staple of a hummingbird’s weight loss plan is protein-rich invertebrates likes bugs, spiders, and numerous larvae together with nectar from pure sources.

As days grow to be shorter and people pure sources wane, hummingbirds instinctively realize it’s time to go.

Finest Hummingbird Feeder

There’s no excellent feeder however that is the very best I’ve discovered. It’s simple to wash and provides the birds a perch whereas they’re feeding.

Easy to use hummingbird nectar feeder.

Should you discover ants are invading your feeder, an ant moat will cease them.

As they head south, some migrating hummingbirds will probably be proud of circumstances in Texas, Florida and the Gulf Coast and cease there for the winter. However most go farther south.

Empress of Dirt

Hummingbird Meals Recipe & Care Suggestions

Ruby-throated hummingbird flying toward sugar water feeder.

To avoid wasting the file, please present your electronic mail handle for this goal solely.We don’t spam.

The Nice Journey South

Mother hummingbird tending her nest.

The 6,000 km Journey South

It’s fairly a journey for the Rufous hummingbirds that begin from Alaska—travelling round 4,000 miles or 6,000 kilometers over the course of some weeks.

It’s not fairly as far for the Ruby-throated hummingbirds that we have now within the east—and into Western Canada as nicely.

However it will possibly nonetheless be a pair thousand miles for them. Plus they’ve the Gulf of Mexico to cope with.

Even the shortest path over the Gulf is about 600 miles with no place to relaxation.

We really don’t know for positive whether or not they fly over or across the Gulf, however, both manner, it’s an unbelievable journey.

Younger Hummingbirds Know the Approach—All on Their Personal

Ruby-throated hummingbirds are able to storing sufficient gasoline—largely from nectar—to fly that far below the suitable climate circumstances, however circumstances within the early fall are sometimes not proper.

What’s superb is that hummingbirds born simply a few months earlier—and who’ve by no means been to Central America—will make the journey on their very own. We’ve a lot to find out about how they discover their manner.

Additionally, regardless of the folklore, no they don’t hitch rides on geese, which was apparently a preferred perception a few years in the past. It’s a enjoyable thought, however no such luck.

So, your wee pals from the feeders over the summer time will in all probability be arriving in Mexico and Central America over the following couple of weeks and having fun with the nectar and bugs there, together with hotter temperatures.

Be prepared in spring together with your feeders stuffed as a few of the exact same hummingbirds will certainly return to their favourite summer time nesting spots as soon as once more.


Over-winter and year-round hummingbird sightings:


Hummingbird feeder

Beneficial Hummingbird Feeder

Hummingbird Feeder | Amazon

I like this fashion of feeder for a number of causes. First, it offers a perch for the birds as they feed. That is essential so that they don’t waste power. Additionally, it’s simple to wash, which helps stop illness.

Pay attention

NEW! Click on play to hear:

~Melissa the Empress of Dust ♛

Hummingbird and map of North America.


Supply hyperlink