FACT CHECK: Does This Image Show The World’s Smallest Bird Species?
An image shared on Facebook purportedly shows a bee hummingbird.
The image actually shows a miniature figurine of a robin.
The bee hummingbird, also known as the zunzuncito, is a bird species native to Cuba, according to a “BirdNote” audio story transcript on the National Audubon Society website. Guinness World Records has called the bee hummingbird the smallest bird on Earth.
The claim that the photo of the orange-breasted bird shows a bee hummingbird has circulated widely on Facebook in recent weeks. One user described the picture as showing “The smallest bird in the world, the Bee Hummingbird, found in the Zapata in Cuba,” while another said the image depicts the “world’s smallest bird! Bee Hummingbird.”
Contrary to this claim, the creature in the picture is not a real bird. A Bulgarian U.S.-based artist named Ina posted the photo on her Instagram, where she indicated in the caption that it is actually a handmade miniature robin figurine she created. Her full name is Ina Gancheva, according to Agence France-Presse.
The artist has sold similar figurines on eBay and posts pictures of her work on social media under the brand name Malinik Miniatures. Her Instagram and Facebook accounts say the figurines are produced at a 1:12 scale.
Robins and bee hummingbirds are different species. Bee hummingbirds can be seen in footage published by the Nature on PBS YouTube channel and photos available on Getty Images. (RELATED: Were Thousands Of Birds Killed By Coronavirus Or 5G Networks In Italy?)
Bee hummingbirds are just 2.25 inches in length, according to the U.S. National Parks Service. They weigh under two grams, and their wings usually beat 80 times per second when they fly, according to the “BirdNote” podcast.