What Do Ostriches and Hummingbirds Have in Common? (Answered)

by Alex Kountry
Updated on

Ostrich and the hummingbirds are both birds, one is the largest bird and the other the smallest bird in the world,

A hummingbird and an ostrich differ vastly in appearance and their habitats, they have got some things in common that you may have not noticed.

Ostrich and hummingbirds are both remarkably fast, although hummingbirds fly and ostrich do not. Ostrich however runs at a remarkable speed of 65km per hour, the hummingbirds can sail through the air at breakneck velocities.

The hummingbird and ostriches produce eggs that protect developing embryos, the eggs have microscopic holes in them to allow oxygen.

Both the ostrich and hummingbirds have both aggressive behavior, hummingbirds though tiny, they are very territorial most especially near feeding Areas, as for the ostrich, unlike what most people think, Ostrich are not cowards when threatened they will deliver a kick capable of killing a lion.

How are Ostriches Compared to Hummingbirds?

What Do Ostriches and Hummingbirds Have in Common

Ostrich and hummingbirds may differ in appearance but they have got some things with hummingbirds in common.

In terms of eating habits, ostrich eat small invertebrates, seeds, and insects, hummingbirds like ostriches also eat insects, hummingbirds have high metabolic rates, they eat continuously and they do enjoy a meal of nectar.

They both have a diet that is primarily of insects.

In the aspect of speed, for instance, the Anna hummingbird is the fastest bird relative to size in the world.

The bird can reach a speed of 50mph on the other hand the ostrich is among the fastest leg animal when it comes to speed, they can cover a distance of 70km/h, despite being flightless and being the heaviest bird in the world, it can still run quite the distance,

Not only can they run at such a speed but also maintain such speed for quite the long distance.

Here is an article I wrote on why do ostriches eat their eggs

Can Ostriches Live with Hummingbirds?

No. They are both territorial animals and they won’t live in the same environment.

Ostriches are too big anyways for a hummingbird to bring down unless of course to annoy, the hummingbird is too small and fast for an ostrich to clobber them, put in one place, they will just annoy the hell out of each other.

Ostriches commonly live in large communities or herds, which strictly consist of the alpha male and a dominant female with other minor hens and their baby ostriches, the ostrich travels with Zebras and Antelopes.

The ostrich prefers habitats like the Savannah, scrubs, grasslands, and semi-deserts.

Ostrich is fond of water and often takes baths where there is water, they are good swimmers as well.

The ostrich lives a nomadic lifestyle and they are most active early and late in the day. The males are territorial and will stop at nothing to defend their territories aggressively.

Hummingbirds on the other hand thrive and live in wooded areas with an abundance of flowers as well as grasslands and meadows,

Other species of hummingbird live in another environment comfortably, environments like warm and cool areas, large cities, desert environments, and areas that have snowfalls.

The hummingbirds are small birds, their size varies from one species to the other. The largest hummingbird weighs 20 grams and the smallest weighs 2.2 grams.

Their nest is small as should be expected, it is sometimes no bigger than the shell of half a walnut.

The female hummingbird lays one to three eggs in the nest, the shape of these eggs is like a tiny pearl,

They build their nest in weird places like on top of outdoor security cameras, on top of lamps, or inside porch lights, inside soccer nets, etc.

Since hummingbirds weigh next to nothing, just about any site is suitable to build their nest in.

How high up the nest will be built solely depends on the species and also on the availability of locations.

Do They Eat The Same Types of Food?

Ostriches are omnivores and tend to eat anything they come across, they eat a variety of food ranging from seeds, plant matter, to lizards, frogs, and insects.

Ostriches have no teeth and have to swallow pebbles to help in food digestion, they can go for days without having water, solely surviving on moisture gotten from plants instead, additionally, they can also make their water internally.

It is not popular news that hummingbirds drink sugar water, the favorite food of the hummingbird is nectar from flowers, it is the most abundant and popular source of food for the hummingbird.

A large amount of sucrose in nectars gives hummingbirds the necessary energy for their high metabolism, Swift flights, and energetic lives.

As sweet as the nectar is, it will not serve as a source of protein, amino acid, and minerals for the hummingbird.

They must eat other things to be able to meet up with their other nutritional needs.

Small insects, larvae, insect eggs, and spiders are critical food sources for hummingbirds, insects serve as a source of protein, fats, and salts that they normally can’t get from eating nectar.

Hummingbirds hunt insects in several ways including picking them up from leaves, barks, or flowers or plucking them from spider webs and sticky saps.

An adult hummingbird must eat several dozens of insects in a day for it to get the required amount of protein.

However, they will need to eat more if they are in the midst of a long migration. Other things the hummingbird can eat are saps, pollen, sand, ashes, etc.

Also check out this article I wrote on why do ostriches dance

Will an Ostrich Protect a Hummingbird?

I would like to think so, but there has been no record or scenario to see where an Ostrich is protecting a hummingbird as they do not stay in the same habitat.

The ostrich is a large bird while the hummingbird is tiny. Many species of birds are monogamous and many of them mate for life.

Many birds are differentiated by class with some feeding on nectar, plants, seed, insects, rodents, fishes, etc

Can Ostrich and Hummingbird Crossbreed?

No. They have different genetic codes that make it impossible for them to crossbreed, the sperm cell of a Hummingbird will not communicate with the eggs of an ostrich.

Many bird species occasionally mate with members of other bird species resulting in hybrid offspring.

Crossbreeding tends to occur between species that are closely related, but a bird from one genus may crossbreed with a bird from an altogether different genus, separated from each other by many millions of years of evolutionary divergence.

Some groups of birds are more prone to hybridization than others.

Some hummingbirds can breed hybrids but these are very rare and can happen only between closely related species.

For crossbreeding to be possible between different species of birds, they would have to have the same number of chromosomes or just differ by one chromosome only, in the very case of interspecies hybrid being fertile, they breed only true to one species and not the other.

The ostrich belongs to the family Struthioniformes, the hummingbird belongs to the avian family Trochilidae, it will be difficult if not impossible for the hummingbird to crossbreed with an ostrich.


The ostrich and the hummingbird are both fascinating types of birds, the ostrich is large whereas the hummingbird is the smallest bird, they have both got similarities just like they have also got their differences.

The hummingbirds are one of the fastest birds in flight while the ostrich is among the fastest on land, they are both aggressive when it comes to defending their territories and they both will enjoy a meal of insects.

As much as they have got similarities, they can’t crossbreed because of their different genetic makeup

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About the author

Alex Kountry

Alex Kountry is the founder of HayFarmGuy and has been a backyard farmer for over 10 years. Since then he has decided to write helpful articles that will help you become a better backyard farmer and know what to do. He also loves to play tennis and read books


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