Hummingbirds of Ecuador

Ecuador Hummingbirds

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The hummingbirds of Ecuador are colorful small, agile and magical birds. They have been ever present in South American cultures.

Hummingbirds are found also throughout the whole continent: from Alaska to Tierra del Fuego in South America, including the Caribbean islands. They are not found elsewhere in the world.

These birds have been ever present in the American cultures. They have been found in the impressive formations in the Nazca desert in Peru.

Aztecs had a warrior got called hitzilopochtli, a mythical being half man and half hummingbird.

Antique Ecuador Cultures that inhabited the Ecuadorian coast represented them in their figurines and ceramic stamps.

Every Native American culture had a word to name these birds: huitzitzil in nahuatl language, quinde in Quichua, guanumbi in guarani, etc. The hummingbirds of Ecuador are commonly called quindes.

The biggest number of species is found in the humid forests of Venezuela, Colombia, Peru, and of course Ecuador. Colombia and Ecuador have the world record with more than 130 species each.

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Based in field studies, 20 species coexist in the Yanacocha cloud forest close to the City of Quito on the Northwest side of the Pichincha volcano.

Of these twenty species, 18 can be found simultaneously at the same altitude.

In order for various humming bird species to coexist the abundance of epiphyte or parasite plants are vital. These plants seem to be tailor made for the hummingbirds beaks.

Such is the case of many bromeliads in the mountain forests on the slopes of the Andes Mountains.

Hummingbirds in Ecuador have developed a unique locomotion system to feed from the flowers' nectar, comparable only with that of insects: vibratory flight.

This type of flight allows the birds to be suspended in the air in front of a flower, and also fly backwards and switch flying speed as desired.

The smallest hummingbirds can move their wings at about 80 wing cycles per second. A hummingbird flies at about 200 times its length per second!.

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The cloud forests in the Northwest of the Pichincha province such as Mindo Town only 90 minutes North of Quito, are just the perfect spots for Birdwatching Adventures observing the famous hummingbirds of Ecuador.

These lively and colorful birds are also common sight in gardens in the midst of the busy city of Quito and all throughout the Ecuadorian Andes.

Hummingbirds are an important part of Quito's cultural ancestry, as well as that of all America.

Visit and Explore Ecuador... This country is known as the "Land of the Hummingbirds".

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