The Costa’s Hummingbird is one of the many species of hummers that visit Madera Canyon in the Santa Rita Mountains. While most species of hummingbirds prefer where there is water, they are especially fond of canyons with sycamores and cottonwoods at about 5000 feet – which is why Madera Canyon is a hummer hot spot. However, what makes the Costa’s Hummingbird unique, is that it prefers Joshua trees and cholla cactus over what one normally associates as hummingbird’s favorite plants. This does not dissuade it from visiting Madera Canyon, however, but to see one there is a little on the rare side.
The Costa’s hummingbird has green upperparts and is pale gray underneath. The head and throat are a brilliant and iridescent purple. The beak is straight and black, unlike many hummer beaks which are often curved. The shape of the beak is directly related to the type of flower and insects they eat.
Reference: The Nature of Madera Canyon by Douglas W. Moore, Friends of Madera, 1999