Hummingbird Competition


Unbelievably, the gang of Hummingbirds are still visiting my feeders.  I have never had this many Hummers for this amount of time.  At times, there are up to twelve birds fighting for the sugar water.  I’ve been spending my days observing the tiny birds and was watching them from my kitchen window, when an interesting scenario began playing out.  I grabbed my camera and started shooting through the window.

It was early in the evening when the feeding frenzy really ramps up and a new visitor appeared.  The reddish brown creature is a Hummingbird Moth, which many mistake as a baby hummingbird. I had an entomologist identify one before and its proper name is Mournful Sphinx Moth (Enyo lugbris).  

At first the moth couldn’t quite figure out how the feeder worked.

Before long it found the feeder’s hole.  Needless to say, the Hummingbird was not happy and it actually poked the moth.  The little Hummingbird Moth was not bothered and fed until it was full.

I took a chance, went outside and managed to get a photo before the moth took off to work on the flowers.

Click on the photo and scroll down to click on full size for a better look.

15 Comments on “Hummingbird Competition”

  1. Anonymous says:

    I have only seen this moth in Florence, Italy, where it came to my sister-in-law and brother’s house. I was sure it was just a fuzzy hummer. Good photo.

  2. FlowerAlley says:

    This is amazing!!!

  3. atkokosplace says:

    Oh my! That’s awesome. What a neat sight. I finally saw a humming bird after waiting to see one for about 2 years! I need to put up a feeder. Thanks for sharing! Koko 🙂

  4. carol o. says:

    That is so interesting. I’ve had the moths feeding in different areas away from the birds and usually right before dark but never have I seen them actually competing at the feeder. Great pictures!

  5. shoreacres says:

    Not only do did you get a moth, you got a different species than I did! I had wondered whether they would use a feeder, and lo and behold, there are some videos online — including one of a hummingbird that the moth ran off. I’m so happy you were able to see this — next year I’m going to hang feeders, and see if I might attract something. I’ve always assumed they wouldn’t come to my place because there’s no cover, etc., but that might not be true.

    • Give it a try. It may take awhile, but once the hummers find a feeder others are attracted to it. Also, in our area we have winter hummingbirds. Did you see Gary Clark’s article in the paper today about Rufous Hummingbirds that winter here. I have one almost every year.

  6. tonytomeo says:

    In the pictures, that moth really does look like a smaller version of a hummingbird!

  7. Sheryl says:

    Wow, it’s amazing how many hummingbirds you see in your yard. I think that I only saw one hummingbird this entire year.

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