The ability to hover is very important to a hummingbird. The hummingbird has the ability to due so better then other species of bird. Have you ever wondered why the hummingbird’s ability to hover is so good? If so, this post will provide you with the answer.
Hummingbirds have the ability to hover better than any other species of bird due to the unusual structure of their wings. They have the ability to do so because their wings are permanently fixed and rigid, except at the shoulder joint, which allows the wing to move freely in all directions.
When hovering, a hummingbird’s wing moves forward, and then the leading edge rotates nearly 180 degrees and moves back again. This wing movement causes the tips of the wings to trace a horizontal figure eight in the air.
One study of the Rufous Hummingbird found that 75 percent of the bird’s weight is supported by the down stroke, while the other 25 percent is lifted by the up stroke. It may interest you to discover that most nectar-feeding insects get equal (50-50) support from the up and down motion of their wings. The same cannot be said of other birds which rely entirely (100 percent) on the down stroke.
The ability of the hummingbird to hover is just one of the many things that make it so unique. This bird never ceases to amaze and fascinate me. I’m constantly wondering what my next fascinating discovery about these birds will be. There is no telling what that will be but you can rest assured that eventually I will share it with my readers.