Wednesday, August 26, 2015

Hummingbirds —ounce for ounce, there’s no fiercer creature on Earth

We've had a number of hummingbirds at our feeder this summer and I love to watch them. Mr. Nag has witnessed them playing under the sprinkler but there has also been some fighting involving loud vocalizations. Who knew that hummingbirds have noisy brawls? Here's evidence:



The Aztecs admired the fierceness of the tiny birds. Huitzilopochtli is the Aztec god of war and the sun. He is depicted either as a hummingbird itself, or as a warrior with hummingbird feathers on his helmet. A study published last year found that the beaks of adult male Phaethornis longirostris were like stilettos, longer and pointier than those of juvenile males or females—the better for stabbing other males in the throat.

No wonder the Aztecs believed warriors cut down in battle would be reincarnated as hummingbirds—ounce for ounce, there’s probably no fiercer creature on Earth.

Read entire article here.

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