warner park nature center

Differences in Ruby-throated Hummingbirds

The differences in male, female, and juvenile Ruby-throated Hummingbirds are subtle but if you know what to look for you can identify between the three fairly easily. Keep in mind that from the beginning to the middle of the hummingbird season (mid April to mid July) you won’t be seeing any juvenile birds. After the young leave the nest in July they will be considered an adult bird but with juvenile plumage.

Adult male hummingbirds of course have the ruby throat but it is not always apparently red. In certain lighting or at certain angles it can appear black. Adult and juvenile females have a white throat that is sometimes marked with faint grey or buffy streaking. Juvenile males may also have a white throat like a female, but more often it is streaked to a greater or lesser degree with black or green.

Tails are also a good way to tell birds apart. Adult males have a more forked tail with pointed outer feathers that are solid black. Females and juvenile males have a blunt rounded tail that is mostly black with white tips to the outer feathers.

Both sexes, adult and juvenile can vary slightly in size and weight depending on the time of season however it is not uncommon for birds to almost double their weight in August and September in preparation of the fall migration.

Adult male Ruby-throated Hummingbird.

Notice the difference in the male and female tails. The male is forked where the female is blunt with white tipped feathers.

Adult female Ruby-throated Hummingbird. Notice the light spotted throat compared to the male on the right.

This adult female is showing off her more blunt tail with white tipped feathers. The male is more forked and lacks the white.

In some lights the throat of the adult male can appear black.

Juvenile male with his ruby throat beginning to come in.


Visit the Warner Park Nature Center Saturday August 25th for their Hummingbird Celebration.

Visit the Warner Park Nature Center Saturday August 25th for their Hummingbird Celebration.

Click here  for more info on the Warner Parks Nature Center's Hummingbird Celebration.

Click here for more info on the Warner Parks Nature Center's Hummingbird Celebration.

Celebrate Hummingbirds at the Warner Park Nature Center August 25th from 9:30 am to 2 pm.

Ruby-throated hummingbirds are migrating South. Celebrate our smallest bird with local nurseries and other groups dedicated to conserving hummingbirds. Nashville Natives, Kona Ice, The Wood Thrush Shop and the Bellevue Branch of the Nashville Public Library will also join us to celebrate. All ages are welcome, and no registration is required. 

Local Birding News: February is national bird feeding month.

February is National Bird Feeding Month and to celebrate The Wood Thrush Shop will be having a store wide sale on all things bird feeding, bird attracting, and birdwatching.   Sale details to come out next week.

Other bird related things going on in February include….

Winter Bird Banding at Warner Park Nature Center, 7311 Hwy 100.  February 3rd stop by between 9 a.m. and noon to witness licensed bird banders as they research winter birds in our area.  The BIRD team will discuss the winter banding project and what they learn through banding.  Seeing wild birds up close gives you a whole different perspective of these fascinating creatures.  No registration required. 

The Dr. Ed Gleaves Memorial Bird Walk

Dr. Gleaves volunteered at the Warner Park Nature Center for 15 years and was an avid birdwatcher as well as a long time customer of The Wood Thrush Shop.  Join experienced birders Chris Sloan and Heather Gallagher for a winter bird walk.  You may register at wpnc.nashville.gov

The Great Backyard Bird Count.

Take part in this annual event conducted by the Audubon Society.  Feb 16 through Feb 19 count the numbers and species of birds visiting feeding stations in your yard.  Help Cornell with their research by contributing your data.  For more information visit gbbc.birdcount.org

You may also be interested in Project Feederwatch by the Cornell Lab of Ornithology, a winter-long survey of birds that visit feeders at backyards, nature centers, community areas, and other locales in North America.  Project Feederwatch begins in November and concludes in April.  For more information visit feederwatch.org

Woodcock walk

One of Mother Nature’s spectacular courtships takes place in late winter. Woodcocks are known for the unique flight-display of males during breeding season. Join naturalist Chris Guerin Thursday, February 20th, 5:00-6:30pm for an evening of woodcock watching at Bells Bend Outdoor Center. For more information visit Bells Bend Outdoor Center. Age level: 13+ Call 615-862-4187 to register.

First annual hummingbird happy hour

Art by Anne Goetze. This and many others will be available during this event! 

Art by Anne Goetze. This and many others will be available during this event! 

The Wood Thrush Shop is proud to be a sponsor of this event put together by Friends of Warner Parks and The Warner park nature center. Come celebrate the first annual Hummingbird Happy Hour. Join us on Thur. Sept 14th from 6-9pm for a beautiful evening in the Warner Parks for cocktails & hors d'oeuvres, hummingbird viewings, a Bird art/photography exhibit by Nathan Collie & Anne Goetze and live music on the patio by local well-known Jazz duet Annie Sellick & Pat Bergeson. Ticket and art sales will support the Bird Information, Research and Data (B.I.R.D) programs, keeping these programs free and available for schools, families and Park visitors.

CLICK HERE TO PURCHASE TICKETS!

Summer Hummingbird Celebration

Join us and the Warner Park Nature Center staff Saturday August 26th for a day all about Hummingbirds. We will have a booth set up so stop by and and say hello.