Hummingbirds are some of the tiniest and most delicate birds on the face of the Earth, and it’s hard to imagine that there is a point in their lives where they are even smaller!
On average, a hummingbird egg is about the size of a coffee bean or small jelly bean. Hummingbirds are so diminutive and so good at hiding their nests that we never really see their hatchlings, which can lead bird lovers to wonder about these mysterious babies.
How big is a baby hummingbird?
How Big Is A Baby Hummingbird?
On average, baby hummingbirds are about an inch long and weigh 0.62 grams. This is a little longer than an American penny, but the baby hummingbirds are so delicate that they only weigh 1/4th the amount that a penny does.
Not all hummingbirds are the same size, though. While most baby hummingbirds are an inch long and weigh less than a gram, this size will vary by species.
At the largest end of the spectrum, the Giant Hummingbird, which is the biggest hummingbird on Earth, will have chicks that are 1.4 grams on average.
On the other end of the spectrum, the Bee Hummingbird, the smallest hummingbird species, has chicks 0.4 grams in weight on average. This isn’t too surprising since the adult Bee Hummingbirds are only 2 inches long when fully grown!
Hummingbirds are born blind and without feathers.
How Big Are Hummingbird Babies When They Leave the Nest?
Mother hummingbirds are incredible caretakers, so much so that they will often be smaller than their fledglings when the chicks are ready to leave the nest and take off on their own.
When baby hummingbirds leave the nest, they weigh around 4.5 grams, while the mother hummingbird will have slimmed down to 2.5 grams due to all the energy spent raising her chicks.
The mother hummingbird works as hard as she can to fatten her chicks up before they leave the nest, so they have the best chance possible of thriving as adults. She will feed them even after they leave the nest for about 10 days, providing a mixture of bugs and nectar, regurgitating from her beak into their throat.
As the baby hummingbirds become more and more independent, they will slim down, shedding their puffy down feathers and becoming the sleek adult hummingbirds we are familiar with.
Although they are a hefty 4.5 grams when they initially leave the nest, by the time they are ready to go off on their own, they will be at their adult weight, between 3-3.5 grams.
How Long Does It Take for a Baby Hummingbird to Fly?
It will take a baby hummingbird nearly 25 days on average to learn how to fly and leave the nest, but even after they learn to fly, the mother hummingbird will still care for them for a period.
Learning to fly, just like walking with human babies, is a process that takes time. When the fledgling hummingbirds first leave the nest, they won’t be expert flyers, and since hummingbirds spend most of their time in flight as adults, they need to be proficient before they strike out on their own.
During this time, the baby hummingbird will spend time practicing their flying moves on the ground, so don’t be alarmed if you see a young hummingbird on the forest floor. At one month of age, the baby hummingbird will be able to leave the nesting area and fly away as a full adult.
How Long Do Baby Hummingbirds Stay With Their Mother?
Mother hummingbirds are attentive parents, but they are also busy! In a single season, a female hummingbird may lay 2 or 3 clutches of tiny hummingbird eggs in different nests, sometimes even building new nests while finishing up with older chicks from another clutch.
Baby hummingbirds stay with their mothers for about a month. They spend about three weeks of that month in the nest, while they spend the last week out of the nest. The whole time they are being cared for by their mother.
Hummingbirds are born blind and without feathers. Even though they are tiny and fragile, the first thing that the baby hummingbirds will do is start eating! This means they have to be fed by their momma around the clock.
To grow, baby hummingbirds need a high amount of protein that only their mother can provide. The mother hummingbird will feed her chicks a combination of bugs and nectar, giving them all the protein they need to thrive.
How Old Is a Hummingbird When It’s Full Grown?
A hummingbird is fully grown at one month of age. They will be able to have their own clutch of eggs at 1-year-old.
Baby hummingbirds grow up fast compared to many other birds because their mothers will often have multiple clutches of eggs in a season.
Taking care of these chicks is very taxing on the body of the mother hummingbird, so while she may be finishing up raising one clutch while just starting another, she can’t fully take care of more than one nest at a time.
At around a month of age, the baby hummingbirds will be ready to strike out on their own as fully-fledged adults, having had plenty of time to grow and practice their flying skills beforehand.
It will be another 11 months before they will reproduce, but otherwise, a 1-month-old hummingbird is fully grown.
Related Post: Why Do Hummingbirds Hover In Your Face?
Final Thoughts: How Big Is A Baby Hummingbird?
How big is a baby hummingbird? While rarely ever seen, a baby hummingbird is an adorable tiny bird that is only a little bigger than a penny while weighing considerably less.
Baby hummers are fascinating little creatures that grow up so quickly! They spend around a month with their mother before leaving, and at this point, they will be able to fly and feed themselves just like any other adult hummingbird.
Facts about hummingbirds and their babies never cease to amaze, so for more on these fantastic creatures, check out this post: