Insights on hummingbird travel, life span revealed

Nov 9, 2014 11:19 AM by News Staff

BOISE, Idaho (AP) - Hummingbirds are giving up some of their secrets.

The perfecting of placing tiny numbered bands on their legs in the last decade has led researchers to discover hummingbirds can live longer than 10 years as opposed to the two or three once thought likely.

And astonishing migrations have been found, with one bird caught in Florida showing up a few months later and more than 3,500 miles away in Alaska.

In the United States, there are some 225 hummingbird banders, a skill so unique it takes years of apprenticeship.

Their steady stream of capture and recapture data is offering new insights into what for many is a delightful backyard visitor with an overabundance of personality.

Copyright 2014 The Associated Press. All rights reserved.


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