Bird of the Week, August 23, 2013
Violet-crowned Hummingbird


Violet-crowned Hummingbird by Greg Homel


The only North American hummingbird without a colorful gorget, the Violet-crowned Hummingbird is still a handsome and sought-after species, easily distinguished from all other North American hummingbirds by its pure white underparts, iridescent bluish-violet crown, and red bill with black tip.


In the United States, this hummingbird is partially migratory, withdrawing into Mexico each winter.


Although the Violet-crowned Hummingbird is not considered threatened across it range in Mexico, its U.S. population is vulnerable to human disturbance and habitat loss due to overgrazing and drought.


One of the few places in the United States where this hummingbird can regularly be seen is Paton's Birder Haven in southwestern Arizona, established in 1974 by Wally and Marion Paton at their home. Now that the couple has passed on, the property is for sale by the family and faces an uncertain future. ABC is working with Tucson Audubon and Victor Emanuel Nature Tours to purchase the property and maintain it for visiting birders.


Find out more and make a contribution to help save Paton's Birder Haven!





Photo by Greg Homel, Natural Elements Productions; Range Map, NatureServe