Monday, May 25, 2015

Natural Hybrid Hummingbird (Anna's X Allen's)

A lovely male hummingbird showing a gorget that is intermediate between the Anna's Hummingbird (Calypte Anna) and the Allen's Hummingbird (Selasphorus sasin). Apparently, hummingbirds occassionally interbreed. This Anna's x Allen's hybrid was once named as a new species, Selasphorus floresii, until it was determined that it was actually a naturally occurring hybrid.

When I shot this picture, I remember being simply transfixed by the brilliant gorget feathers that reflected a brilliant copper-orange and metallic red, thinking it was the most beautiful hummingbird I had seen.  I was so transfixed, that, while I registered that the coloration was uniquely attractive and hypnotic under the sun,  I only realized this handsome male bird was likely a hybrid when I looked again at the picture, comparing it to multiple pictures before posting.  After much searching online, I finally found pictures of hummingbird hybrids and confirmed that this is likely an Anna's by Allen's hybrid.

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