The distinctive bill of a Swordbill Hummingbird is longer than its body which makes for easy identification from any other bird or hummingbird. When feeding, the tongue of a hummingbird extends beyond its bill and contracts about 13 times per second, allowing it to lap up nectar. When the sword-billed hummingbird perches, it holds its beak almost vertical, thus reducing the strain on its neck.
We saw lots of these guys at high altitude (11,500 ft) at the Yanacocha reserve outside of Quito, Ecuador. For info about this reserve, visit http://www.fjocotoco.org/yanacocha.htm.
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