When Do Hummingbirds Leave Oklahoma?

When it comes to hummingbirds in Oklahoma, they unfortunately don’t stick around throughout the year. Ruby-throated Hummingbirds, the common species in the state, migrate south to southern Mexico and Central America at the end of every summer. This is due to changes in daylight hours, flowers, and insects, which signal to them that it’s time to leave. Most hummingbirds depart Oklahoma by early to mid-September, with very few lingering until October. If you’re wondering when to take down your feeders, it’s best to wait until you haven’t seen a hummingbird for two weeks. This ensures that all the hummingbirds in Oklahoma have left and can safely migrate as they require lots of energy. So keep an eye out for these beautiful creatures before they embark on their long journey!

When Do Hummingbirds Leave Oklahoma?

Ruby-throated Hummingbirds departure from Oklahoma

Every year, as the end of summer approaches, the Ruby-throated Hummingbirds, the only common hummingbird species in Oklahoma, bid farewell to the state and embark on a long journey south to southern Mexico and Central America. These tiny birds spend the winter months in warmer climates before returning to Oklahoma in the spring. The departure of the hummingbirds marks the end of their breeding season and the start of their arduous migration.

Reasons behind hummingbirds migration

The migration of hummingbirds is triggered by several factors. One key factor is the change in daylight hours. As the days become shorter, the hummingbirds sense this change and it serves as a signal for them to begin their southward journey. Additionally, the reduction in the availability of flowers and insects, which are their main food sources, also prompts the hummingbirds to migrate in search of more abundant resources. It is truly remarkable how these birds are attuned to subtle environmental cues that guide their migration patterns.

When Do Hummingbirds Leave Oklahoma?

Typical departure timeframe

In Oklahoma, most Ruby-throated Hummingbirds start their southward migration by early to mid-September. By the end of September, the vast majority of these tiny birds have already left the state, leaving behind a quiet and empty landscape. It is a bittersweet moment for bird enthusiasts who have marveled at the vibrant presence of these hummingbirds throughout the summer months. However, their departure is necessary for their survival and continuation of the species.

Late migrators in October

While the majority of the Ruby-throated Hummingbirds leave Oklahoma by the end of September, it is not uncommon to spot late migrators in October. These latecomers may have started their migration from regions further north, resulting in a delayed arrival in Oklahoma. It is always a pleasant surprise to catch a glimpse of these stragglers before they continue their journey southward. Their presence serves as a reminder of the incredible resilience and determination of these small creatures.

When Do Hummingbirds Leave Oklahoma?

When to take down feeders

Many people wonder when they can safely take down their hummingbird feeders for the winter. The general recommendation is to keep the feeders up until you haven’t seen a hummingbird for at least two weeks. This timeframe ensures that the majority of the hummingbirds in Oklahoma have already departed. However, it is important to note that some straggler hummingbirds may still be passing through, so it’s best to be patient and observe before removing the feeders. The nectar provided by these feeders can be a valuable energy source for the late migrators.

Importance of providing nectar for migrating hummingbirds

As the Ruby-throated Hummingbirds embark on their long journey southward, they rely on various food sources to sustain their energy levels. Providing nectar through feeders can be a crucial supplement for these birds, especially during their migration. The availability of nectar-rich flowers may dwindle throughout their route, making the nectar provided by feeders a vital resource. By keeping the feeders up and filled with fresh nectar, individuals can contribute to the well-being and successful migration of these remarkable birds.

When Do Hummingbirds Leave Oklahoma?

Observing the last hummingbirds leave

For avid bird watchers and nature enthusiasts in Oklahoma, observing the departure of the last hummingbirds can be an exciting and sentimental experience. It is a testament to the changing seasons and the cyclical rhythms of nature. If you have witnessed the last hummingbirds leaving Oklahoma, we would love to hear your observations and experiences in the comments section below. Sharing these moments fosters a sense of community and appreciation for the beauty and marvels of the natural world.

Reader opinions and experiences

Reader opinions and experiences are an invaluable resource for understanding the intricacies of hummingbird migration. By sharing personal observations and stories, individuals can contribute to a richer understanding of these incredible birds and their behavior. If you have any opinions, experiences, or questions about hummingbird migration in Oklahoma, please feel free to share them in the comments section below. Your input is highly valued and can contribute to a broader conversation about these fascinating creatures.

When Do Hummingbirds Leave Oklahoma?


The departure of Ruby-throated Hummingbirds from Oklahoma marks the end of their breeding season and the beginning of their brave journey southwards. Their migration is influenced by various factors such as daylight hours, availability of food sources, and innate instincts. While most hummingbirds leave Oklahoma by the end of September, some may linger into October, providing additional opportunities for observation and appreciation. By keeping feeders up until hummingbirds have been absent for at least two weeks, individuals can support the late migrators and ensure their successful journey. Let us continue to cherish and protect these remarkable birds that grace our lives with their presence.


  • “Here’s When Hummingbirds Leave Oklahoma! (to Migrate South)” by Bird Watching HQ

When Do Hummingbirds Leave Oklahoma?

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