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Trochilidae

Trochilidae (hermits, humming-birds, mangos; class Aves, order Apodiformes) A family of small, mainly green, black, or brown birds that have areas of brightly coloured, iridescent plumage on the throat, crown, head, and back. They have slender and pointed, short to long bills, which are straight or decurved. Their wings are long and narrow, their tails rounded, square, or forked, and some tail feathers are elongated or modified. Their legs are short, with small feet. They are arboreal, inhabit forests, and feed on nectar and insects. Their flight is very rapid and they hover when feeding. They nest in trees. Hermits (22–5 species of Phaethornis) inhabit rain forest and make cup-shaped nests at the tips of leaves. There are about 115 genera in the family, with about 330 species, many migratory (Archilochus colubris, the ruby-throated humming-bird, migrates between Canada and Central America). Humming-birds are found in N., Central, and S. America, and in the W. Indies. Mellisuga helenae (bee humming-bird), measuring about 5 cm from the tip of its bill to the end of its tail, is the smallest bird in the world.

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