Nine years of banding and recapture of hummingbirds in southern British Columbia

J. Cam Finlay

270 Trevlac Place, Victoria, B.C. V9E 2C4 email:

Abstract: A total of 8,611 hummingbirds, including 7,475 Rufous Hummingbirds, were banded during nine years commencing in 1997, on Vancouver Island and the mainland of southern British Columbia. A total of 132 sites were operated, two of them for the entire nine years and two others for six years. Most of the banded birds were Rufous, along with 874 Calliope, 186 Anna’s and 76 Black-chinned Hummingbirds. About 12% of the birds trapped at each site were female rufous recaptured at their original banding site, and two females returned six years after capture, making them over seven years of age. There was indirect evidence that some rufous might nest a second time in the same year. At least four sites in B.C. appeared to be used primarily as refuelling stops, while most were breeding locations.
Twelve rufous, banded or recovered in this project, showed movement within B.C., away from their banding sites. There appeared to be an east-to-west movement from the coastal mainland to Vancouver Island and across the island. Records provided by other investigators indicate that six rufous banded in the USA were recovered in B.C. One had been banded in Louisiana, moving 3,517 km, the longest recovery to date for rufous movement. This is also the first return indicating a nesting ground for the disjunctive population of rufous that winters along the U.S. coast of the Gulf of Mexico.
Another return was 2,319 km from Arizona to the east side of Vancouver Island. These recoveries suggest two migratory pathways, one up the west coast and the other from the central USA to the interior of B.C.

Key words: Rufous Hummingbird, Selasphorus rufous, Calliope Hummingbird, Stellula calliope, Anna’s Hummingbird, Calypta anna, Black-chinned Hummingbird, Archilochus alexandri, banding, longevity, age, band recovery, recapture, long distance movement, east-west movement, migration, site fidelity

PDFicon Finlay, J.C. 2007. Nine years of banding and recapture of hummingbirds in southern British Columbia. British Columbia Birds 15:9-23.


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