A large number of Golden-crowned Kinglets pass through New England on their way from Canada to more southern wintering grounds at this time of year, but some hardy souls choose to remain in New England year round. Barely bigger than a hummingbird, Golden-crowned Kinglets manage to survive nights as cold as -40 F. degrees. If faced with a very cold night, Ruby-throated Hummingbirds lower their metabolic rate and go into a state of torpor. Golden-crowned Kinglets don’t go to this extreme, but several have been observed huddling together for warmth, and they have a tiny feather covering each of their nostrils, which slows down icy cold air and lets it warm up before it is breathed in. (Photo is of a female Golden-crowned Kinglet.)
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