Only 3 hummingbird species are currently known to occur naturally in New Hampshire.
Ruby-throated Hummingbirds, Archilochus colubris – Native – Usually arrive in the first week of May, with males usually being the first to show up to stake out their feeding territories. Most leave toward the end of September. Males usually depart first, and females and the young follow about two weeks later.
The male has a ruby-red throat, a white collar, an emerald green back and a forked tail.
The female has a green back and tail feathers that are banded white, black and grey-green.
Rufous Hummingbirds Selasphorus rufus — Like the Ruby-throated Hummingbirds, they usually arrive in the first week of May, with males usually being the first to show up to stake out their feeding territories. Most leave toward the end of September. Males usually depart first, and females and the young follow about two weeks later.
These hummingbirds are usually found in gardens and at feeders. These birds are fearless, and are known for chasing away other hummingbirds and even larger birds, or rodents away from their favorite nectar feeders and flowers.
Males can easily be identified by their glossy orange-red throats.
Females have whitish, speckled throats, green backs and crowns, and rufous, white-tipped tail feathers.
Recently photographed in Manchester, New Hampshire: http://ottoc.zenfolio.com/nh_birds He was observed daily from October 6 through November 23, 2013
Calliope Hummingbirds (Stellula calliope) –Non-breeding Vagrant – these hummingbirds breed along the migrate south or east for the winter. This is the first instance of them being reported as far east as New Hampshire.
Is it a Hummingbird or an Insect?
The Hawk Moths (often referred to as “Hummingbird Moth”) is easily confused with hummingbirds, as they have similar feeding and swift flight patterns. These moths also hover in midair while they feed on nectar.
Moths have a couple of sensors or “antennas” on top of the head, which are key identifiers.