Formed By Him – Sword-billed Hummingbird

Sword-billed Hummingbird (Ensifera ensifera) by Michael Woodruff

Sword-billed Hummingbird (Ensifera ensifera) by Michael Woodruff

He loves righteousness and justice; The earth is full of the goodness of the LORD. (Psalms 33:5 NKJV)

The Lord has graciously outfitted a small, but unique hummingbird. The Sword-billed Hummingbird has an unusually long bill.

I came across this bird today while checking out photographs of our newest Photographer to give permission to use his fantastic photos. Michael Woodruff’s Photostream has some shots that have just taken my breath away today. Thanks, Michael, for the permission to use the great images that you have captured through your lenses.

When I first saw the Sword-billed Hummingbird, my first thought was why did God make it like that. There has to be a reason for that beak being so long. After investigating some, here are a few facts about this bird:

What is so unique about the Sword-billed Hummer is that it is noted as the only species of bird to have a bill longer than the rest of its body. This beak is used to feed on flowers with long corollas such as Passiflora mixta. The tongue is therefore also unusually long. God had a long flower that needed pollination and so He created a long billed hummingbird to get in that long tube. The bird gets the nectar, carries away pollen and the bird and flower both have their needs provided.

Passiflora mixta galupa - Suncrest Nurseries

Passiflora mixta galupa – Suncrest Nurseries

(From Suncrest Nurserises) “Passiflora mixta – A cool growing species with long tubed flowers that face outward and upward at a 45 degree angle. The color is a vibrant pink with white highlights. It is a large and vigorous grower and puts on an amazing show. The variety ‘Galupa’ has flowers that face outward and downward at a 45 degree angle and are a bit larger in overall aspect. A very beautiful species”

Because it’s beak is so long, it has to groom itself with it’s feet. The Sword-billed Hummingbird was created by an Omniscient Creator that knew it needed the long bill for the flowers, but also had to have a way to keep well groomed.

Keith Blomerley, one of our videographers, captured a Sword-billed Hummingbird perched on a tree and looking around. Another bird flies by.


Sword-billed Hummingbird (Ensifera ensifera)©WikiC

Sword-billed Hummingbird (Ensifera ensifera) is a species of hummingbird from South America and the sole member of the genus Ensifera. It is found in Bolivia, Colombia, Ecuador, Peru and Venezuela.

The total length can be 15 cm (6 in) and the bird can weigh 12 grams, making it one of the largest hummingbirds.

What an amazing hummingbird. The Hummingbirds are in the Apodiformes Order which includes not only the hummers (Trochilidae), but also Owlet-nightjars (Aegothelidae), Treeswifts (Hemiprocnidae) and Swifts (Apodidae).

For by Him all things were created that are in heaven and that are on earth, visible and invisible, whether thrones or dominions or principalities or powers. All things were created through Him and for Him. (Colossians 1:16 NKJV)

Updated 11/30/10:

Just received this note from Michael Woodruff about this article and thought I would attach it.

The Sword-billed Hummingbird is quite a bird. We saw two or three of them at the Yanacocha Reserve in the Andes of Ecuador. They were crazy to watch as they knew right where the end of their beak was, feeding out of the hummingbird feeders. It looked like quite a feat to balance that bill, but they were good at it!

Glad you’re enjoying the photos and it would be cool to hear which ones you end up using at some point. I think it’s great how you’re incorporating scripture verses on the pages. Awesome stuff.

Have a great week and hope you’re getting to feeling better.



3 thoughts on “Formed By Him – Sword-billed Hummingbird

  1. Our God is amazing! Romans 1:18 The wrath of God is being revealed from heaven against all the godlessness and wickedness of people, who suppress the truth by their wickedness, 19 since what may be known about God is plain to them, because God has made it plain to them. 20 For since the creation of the world God’s invisible qualities—his eternal power and divine nature—have been clearly seen, being understood from what has been made, so that people are without excuse.21 For although they knew God, they neither glorified him as God nor gave thanks to him, but their thinking became futile and their foolish hearts were darkened. 22 Although they claimed to be wise, they became fools 23 and exchanged the glory of the immortal God for images made to look like a mortal human being and birds and animals and reptiles.


  2. The swordbill is nature’s creation. THE BILL EVOLVED TO THE SHAPE OF IT’S FOOD SOURCE. It’s that simple (I am a retired wildlife biologist).


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