We live in Central Illinois. We have lots of hummingbirds in
our yard. About two weeks ago, they started diving at each other while
they are feeding. The first part of the summer, they left each other
alone, now it seems they are trying to attack each other. Can you tell me
why they are displaying this behavior now?
August is post breeding dispersal time for hummingbirds in Illinois, a lot
of the birds coming to feeders now are young of the year, along with
dispersing adults. Young birds may be "testing" their territorial instincts,
and hummingbirds tend to be rather pugnacious anyway. Earlier in the year,
during the breeding season, territories are more firmly established and
dominance more or less worked out, so there is less visible aggression,
though it occurs at all times. Enjoy!
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Update: June 2012