Fun Puffleg Hummingbird Facts For Kids

Georgia Stone
Aug 31, 2023 By Georgia Stone
Originally Published on Oct 26, 2021
Great puffleg hummingbird facts that are fascinating for both kids and adults.

The puffleg hummingbirds belong to the Haplophaedia and Eriocnemis genera and are common inhabitants of woodland areas and any site resplendent with shrubbery and humid forests as well as mountain areas of an average altitude range of 3281-15748 ft (1000 -4800 m).

They are endemic to Colombia and can also be found in the forests of Bolivia, Ecuador, the Andes Mountain range in Argentina, Venezuela, and Peru which have an abundance of insects and flowering plants and trees where they feed on nectar from.

The male birds can be distinguished by their bright blue, green, or coppery plumage. The female hummingbirds have somewhat duller feathers as compared to the males.

The most prominent feature of both the sexes of these pufflegs is their thick leg puffs of woolly feather tufts around their feet which are snow-white in color. This natural feature also gives them their name.

This species of pufflegs also have different colored tufts. For instance, the black-thighed puffleg also known as the Eriocnemis Nigrivestis is characterized by their black-colored leg puffs around their feet. The buff-thighed puffleg can be easily identified by their slightingly buff-tinged leg puffs.

The puffleg eriocnemis also have other common features which are common for all species. They possess a straight, black-colored bill as well as a forked tail. The difference between the genus of this species can be identified by how bright their feathers are. The members of the Haplophaediagenus are commonly duller than the members of the genus Eriocnemis.

The small bird species of pufflegs are quite common in the forest areas of America and can also be often found in places like the Andes, Bolivia, Argentina, Ecuador, Peru, Venezuela, and Colombia. However, many sub-species of these hummingbirds are critically endangered.

Amongst them, the colorful puffleg, gorgeted puffleg, and black-breasted puffleg are critically endangered. The turquoise-throated puffleg hummingbirds are quite possibly extinct because it is the rarest hummingbird species in the world.

In this article, you will find more detailed information and more than five interesting facts about the puffleg hummingbird species also known as eriocnemis or haplophaedia, and also about the American sapphire vented puffleg hummingbird, the endangered black-breasted puffleg hummingbirds species, the puffleg eriocnemis, colorful puffleg hummingbird, golden breasted puffleg hummingbird and the like.

If you liked our article on the puffleg hummingbirds, you can check out other similar and interesting articles like the broad-billed hummingbird and mangrove hummingbird.

Puffleg Hummingbird Interesting Facts

What type of animal is a puffleg hummingbird?

The puffleg hummingbird is a type of American bird that can be classified into two genera which are puffleg eriocnemis and haplophaedia.

What class of animal does a puffleg hummingbird belong to?

The American puffleg hummingbird is a type of bird from the class Aves.

How many puffleg hummingbirds are there in the world?

The estimated number of puffleg eriocnemis hummingbirds is around 250-999 adult individuals. In 2005, the Mirabilis Swarovski Nature Reserve of 4,892 acres was created for the protection of natural habitat for the species which was carried out by ABC along with Fundación ProAves and Swarovski Optik where these colorful puffleg hummingbirds can be seen thriving today.

Where does a puffleg hummingbird live?

 This species of pufflegs can be predominantly found in mountain areas and green forest covers of South America and also areas of the Andes, Bolivia, Argentina, Ecuador, Peru, Venezuela, and Colombia.

What is a puffleg hummingbird's habitat?

Hummingbirds inhabit various types of landscapes. Like most other species of hummingbirds, temperate woodlands, mountain meadows, cloud forests, tropical rainforests, and deserts. The hummingbird species are known to thrive in placers with an abundance of flowers. These birds can also be often found in gardens throughout the urban and suburban areas of America.

Who do puffleg hummingbirds live with?

Hummingbirds are neither social nor romantic birds. They live an isolated life hunting insects for themselves and feeding on nectar from flowers. After mating, the males don't stay for long toraise their young either. The females are the ones that build their own nests, lay eggs, incubate, and care for the young herself.

How long does a puffleg hummingbird live?

The pufflegs in their ideal habitat of green forest covered with an abundance of trees and food sources like insects and plants that bear flowers thrive approximately for three to five years.

How do they reproduce?

Males have territories and mate with the first female they come across in their territorial area. After the process of mating, the male leaves the female hummingbird to finish building her nest to lay her eggs.

Female hummingbirds have a gestation period of a few days and they lay two eggs which are almost akin to the size of peas. The hatching time can range between two to three weeks.

The male pufflegs are also free to mate with other females that they find within their territory.

The baby birds will remain in their nest for 18-22 days till which the mother bird feeds them. After this period which they leave to fend for themselves and find their own food.

What is their conservation status?

Some birds from this species can be abundantly found but some birds, like the black-breasted puffleg, are considered critically endangered.

Puffleg Hummingbird Fun Facts

What do puffleg hummingbirds look like?

Puffleg hummingbirds are special because of their exceptionally small size and their colorful appearance and long beak which they use to draw nectar from.

The adult male birds have a lustrous and colorful plumage which can range from green, steel-blue to copper colors whereas the plumage of the female is dull compared to the males.

These birds possess a straight black bill and a forked tail. The most striking feature of this species after which they were named is because of the dense feathering around their legs which are called 'leg puffs', which are similar to cotton balls on their legs.

These dense feather tufts are commonly snow-white in color with an exception of the black-thighed puffleg or the buff-thighed puffleg which have black or buff-tinged tufts around their legs.

How cute are they?

Much like the Rufous hummingbird and the Calliope hummingbird, these are birds are also extremely cute. Their bright vivid color coupled with their small size makes them effortlessly cute.

How do they communicate?

This bird species is known to be mostly silent. However, their occasional calls can be quite loud. Their calls can be described as a uniform and a repetitive metallic sound sounding like 'tseet tseet tseet'.

How big is a puffleg hummingbird?

Hummingbirds are exceptionally small and can often be mistaken for insects had they not had feather wings to tell them apart. From pea-sized eggs, they usually grow up to be 3 in (7.62 cm) in length as adults.

How fast can a puffleg hummingbird fly?

Hummingbirds have rapid wingbeats because of their tiny wings and are generally known to cover a speed of 60.8 mph (98 kph).

How much does a puffleg hummingbird weigh?

Puffleg hummingbirds are relatively small and weigh around 0.14-0.15 oz (4–4.2 g).

What are the male and female names of the species?

There is no unique name to distinguish between the males and the females of this species of birds. They are merely referred to as males and females and can be recognized by the brightness of their plumage.

Males tend to have a brighter plumage of blue, copper, or green color whereas females usually have plumage of the same colors but are darker and duller.

What would you call a baby puffleg hummingbird?

Puffleg babies are normally called hatchlings after they hatch from their eggs and do not have any specific name to distinguish them from the adult birds.

What do they eat?

Hummingbirds generally survive on nectar from flowers but are also known to feed on small insects like beetles, aphids, and mosquitos.

Are they dangerous?

Hummingbirds are hardly dangerous to humans and like to live in peace and harmony in their own territory and habitat. They would never intentionally bring harm to humans unless threatened or disturbed.

However, these birds can be quite dangerous to each other.

They are not social birds and like to live in isolation without even their potential mates. They are additionally known to be extremely territorial and hostile towards other birds who trespass within their own territory and can be seen getting aggressive towards other hummingbirds to protect or boast of their food stores as well as to potential mates.

Would they make a good pet?

Hummingbirds may not be dangerous to humans but would not make good pets either because they thrive better when they are free in their own natural habitat. Ther prefer to thrive in isolation within their own marked territory. Additionally, hummingbirds would be quite a hassle to feed as they predominantly feed on nectar from flowers.

Did you know...

Hummingbirds are known to have the largest brain which accommodates around 4.2% of their total body weight, and the largest breast and flight muscles which take up 30% of the total mass of their body as well as the largest heart.

They are the only living bird species that have the ability to rotate their wings in a circle which makes them able to fly both backward and forwards as well as up, down, sideways, or even hover in one spot.

They do not possess any sense of smell and have weak feet are which are only applied when they are perching.

What is the smallest hummingbird in the world?

Hummingbirds are known to be the smallest bird species in the world. But the smallest hummingbird amongst this species is called the bee hummingbird which automatically makes it the smallest bird in the world. They weigh less than a penny!

How we can protect hummingbirds from extinction?

Hummingbirds are becoming endangered by the day and it is important that we take steps to prevent this from ever happening. Due to their tiny size, most birds lose their life because of bird-window collisions.

This can be avoided by placing hummingbird feeders appropriately to break up the window reflections close to where the birds feed. Pesticides should be avoided to prevent poisoning them and their bird feeders should be cleaned properly every day. Their nectar should also be changed on a daily basis.

Here at Kidadl, we have carefully created lots of interesting family-friendly animal facts for everyone to discover! Learn more about some other birds from our macaw facts and owl facts pages.

You can even occupy yourself at home by coloring in one of our free printable hummingbird coloring pages.

Second image by Mike's Birds.

We Want Your Photos!
We Want Your Photos!

We Want Your Photos!

Do you have a photo you are happy to share that would improve this article?
Email your photos

More for You

See All

Written by Georgia Stone

Bachelor of Arts specializing in French with Film Studies, Bachelor of Arts (Year Abroad) specializing in Literature, History, Language, Media, and Art

Georgia Stone picture

Georgia StoneBachelor of Arts specializing in French with Film Studies, Bachelor of Arts (Year Abroad) specializing in Literature, History, Language, Media, and Art

Georgia is an experienced Content Manager with a degree in French and Film Studies from King's College London and Bachelors degree from Université Paris-Sorbonne. Her passion for exploring the world and experiencing different cultures was sparked during her childhood in Switzerland and her year abroad in Paris. In her spare time, Georgia enjoys using London's excellent travel connections to explore further afield.

Read full bio >