The Curious Habits of Hummingbird Sleep
Hummingbird truly are magnificent creatures. After all, who doesn’t like watching them hover around feeders and zip around? With hummingbirds being so active, you may begin to wonder if these birds ever sleep. Let’s take a look at this question and, in the process, uncover some interesting facts about hummingbirds.
Do Hummingbirds Sleep?
To answer the basic question of do hummingbirds sleep, it is important to think of the function of sleep. It serves as a way for our bodies to rest and recover from stress of the day. Thus, it is no surprise that all animals sleep including hummingbirds.
In fact, hummingbird have a high need for sleep given the extensive energy they burn during the day. You’ve surely mesmerized at how quickly they flap their wings. That requires a lot of energy. In fact, it requires so much energy that hummingbirds engage in a special type of sleep called torpor.
Torpor is a special type of sleep that animals such as birds, bats, and even some rodents engage in. It is accompanied by several physiological changes. When hummingbirds enter torpor each night, their major biological functions such as breathing, heart rate, body temperature, and metabolism all decrease. This allows them to maximize energy conservation.
Where Do Hummingbirds Sleep?
Chances are that you have never actually saw a hummingbird sleep on their feeders. In fact, you may be wondering where do hummingbirds go at night. They actually don’t go very far. Typically, hummingbirds will find a cozy little tree branch with plenty of room and sleep there. The ideal branch is one that is shielded by leaves from weather and potential predators.
Where else do hummingbirds go at night? Honestly, there really isn’t any other answer to this question. Many people envision birds sleeping in nests; however, hummingbirds don’t do this. Additionally, you may have tried to get hummingbirds to roost in a birdhouse. This isn’t going to happen either as they hate enclosed spaces.
How Often Do Hummingbirds Sleep?
This is a really interesting question. Hummingbirds sleep each day from dusk until dawn. When night comes, hummingbirds go to their sleeping spot and enter a state of torpor. When the sun rises, exposure to the light triggers a hormonal reaction that makes hummingbirds begin to rise from torpor.
Since hummingbirds typically sleep from dusk until dawn, this means the amount of time they spend asleep each night varies depending upon the season. While you may see a hummingbird resting during the day, they will not sleep during the day unless something is wrong.
Another interesting aspect of how hummingbirds sleep is their position. Hummingbirds in torpor often, but not always, sleep hanging down from a branch. They look a lot like a bat and if you see one in torpor, you may mistake it for dead. However, it is very much alive and should not be bothered. Hummingbirds truly are amazing creatures even while they slumber.
Hopefully, now you know the answer to your questions: Do Hummingbirds Sleep and Where Do They Go at Night?