Many books about hummingbirds are full of pictures and short on facts. That is partly because hummers are beautiful, but secretive. It is much easier to take their pictures at a feeder than discover the story of their day-to-day lives. However, there are some books out there that have both pictures and facts. The books I list on this page are the ones I own. They are listed alphabetically. Happy reading.
A Hummingbird in My House: The Story of Squeak, by Arnette Heidcamp. 1990. Crown Publishers, Inc. Hardback. 116 pages.
In late October of 1988, Arnette Heidcamp found a scrawny hummer in her garden. She decided the hummer did not have enough body fat to survive such a late start on his fall migration. So she kept him in her sun room all winter. She took the responsibility she had assumed seriously, and this book is the story of that winter. It is filled with personal observations and facts about hummers. It is told in the form of a story, but it is filled with lots of facts about hummers that I have found nowhere else. This book would make a welcomed gift to anyone who loves hummingbirds.
How to Attract Hummingbirds & Butterflies,by John V. Dennis and Mathew Tekulsky. 1991. Ortho Books. Paperback. 112 pages.
The first 51 pages of this book are devoted to hummers. I highly recommend it as the first book you should buy on hummingbirds. It has great pictures and much helpful information on creating a hummingbird habitat in your garden. It is filled with facts about hummers. It also has several pages of information on plants that will attract hummers to your garden. Highly recommended.
The Hummingbird Book: The Complete Guide to Attracting, Identifying, and Enjoying Hummingbirds, by Donald and Lillian Stokes. 1989. Little Brown and Company. Paperback. 89 pages.
This is a nice reference book. Its best feature is that it discusses each of the eight major species of hummers found in North America. There are pictures of each to help with identification and the usual range of the hummer is illustrated on a map. Hints about taking pictures of hummers are covered. There are sections on plants that attract hummers and how one can create a hummingbird habitat. Feeders are also covered. This is a well thought out book. Don't miss it.
The Ruby-throated Hummingbird, by June Osborne. 1998. The University of Texas Press. Hardback. 146 pages.
This is a really wonderful book for details on the day-to-day lives of ruby-throated hummingbirds. Ruby- throats are the hummers that frequent both sides of the Mississippi River. They are perhaps the most beautiful birds in existence, and the most frequently encountered hummer. This book is full of details, both from other writings on hummers and from personal observations of the author. There are fact-filled chapters on courtship behavior, nest building, migration and banding of hummers. I highly recommend it.
The Way of the Hummingbird: In Legend, History & Today's Gardens, by Virginia C. Holmgren. 1986. Capra Press. 176 pages.
This is an eclectic book. The treatment of the hummer in legend and past history is covered. For instance, there is a section devoted to the first references to hummers in Spanish, Italian, Portuguese, Latin, French and English. That may sound boring, but Holmgren makes the subject come alive. This is a most unusual book on hummers and it approaches the subject from its own direction.
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