At first sight, it’s easy to mistake a hummingbird moth for a tiny hummingbird.
It feeds on the nectar of flowers, hovering with the body stationary, its transparent wings beating so fast as to be nearly invisible, and a long proboscis protruding beaklike into the blossom. In flight, the wings create a soft buzzing, also like a hummingbird.
One obvious difference between the birds and the moths is size. The ruby-throated hummingbird can be 3” long. Hummingbird moths are much smaller at 1-1/2” long.
Learn more about the two species of hummingbird moths found in Massachusetts, as well as their life cycles and behavior.