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Hummingbirds at feeders
Making nectar to attract hummingbird to feeders
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Attracting hummingbirds to feeders
1 Pour 1 part white sugar into microwavable container or saucepan.
2 Add 4 parts water; stir.
3 Heat in microwave (about 5 minutes on high power) or on stove top just to boiling and sugar is dissolved.
4 Allow liquid to cool completely before filling clean feeders.
Nectar can be stored in refrigerator for 1 week.
Keep feeders filled with fresh nectar as fermented and cloudy nectar can be harmful.
There is no need to add red dye to the nectar to attract hummingbirds and may be harmful to the birds.
Hummingbirds feed 5-8 times an hour
When to set out the feeders
I live in zone 6b (southern New Jersey) and we have the Ruby throat-ed hummingbirds. I set my feeders out April 1st each year and have seen hummers at the feeder as early as April 8th. To check the arrival date of Ruby-throated hummingbirds where you live, visit Hummingbirds.net for a map of yearly migration.
As the end of the season begins approaching, around late August, we notice many more hummers and they begin looking chubby as they beef-up for the upcoming southern migration. I have read to keep feeders up, clean and filled at least two weeks after you see your last hummingbird in order to help stragglers. I have seen hummingbirds, although infrequent, as late as October.
Cleaning hummingbird feeders
- Once or twice each week, bring the feeders to the kitchen sink
- Open (each is a little different in design) and pour out and remaining nectar.
- Rinse under running water and using an old toothbrush or small bottle brush, wash/scrub away all traces of mold and dirt. Do not use soap.
- Flush well with water.
- Refill with cool, fresh nectar
- Reassemble feeder container and hang again
In addition to nectar from a feeder, hummingbirds eat tiny insects and visit tubular-shaped flowers, using their long, tapered bill to obtain nectar from the center.
A few plants that attract hummingbirds
- butterfly bush (Buddlija)
- trumpet vine
- morning glories
But I will be waiting for them again next spring!
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Your photos are stunning. Maybe if I had had your tutorial our HB feeder would have been more successful. I had it in the same place by the kitchen window. Actually we get them visiting our flower box there now from time to time.
Thank you for all the information, Lorraine. I saw a hummingbird when I was out watering last evening. I certainly must get a feeder with a perch. They're so fun to watch!
Tammy@T's Daily Treasures says
How lovely! You got some beautiful shots. My girlfriend who lives in Qatar loves going home every summer to San Antonio so that she can reunite with all the hummers who come to visit her yard. 🙂 Best wishes, Tammy
Just a little something from Judy says
An EXCEPTIONAL post, with incredible pictures! So interesting! Thanks for the beauty it added to my morning.
Gypsy Heart says
I love, love hummingbirds! Your photos are beautiful.
Thats amazing Lorraine, such beautiful photos too. If we had hummingbirds I would certainly be making that nectar!
Blackberry Lane says
Your photos are so sweet. We had flowers that attracted hummers at the home we shared with mother. She could not see them but she heard them and it delighted her every time!
Susan D says
I love your photography and the hummingbirds are my favorite species of birds. When I lived back east the babies would get so close while sitting on my veranda. I truly miss them.
Your photos are wonderful! I can never capture hummingbirds with my camera. Most years we have a hanging fuchsia just outside our patio doors. Our hot tub is close by and I enjoyed the early morning visit of a sweet, little hummingbird as I sat in the hot tub early each morning. We didn't hang a fuchsia this year – so, no hummingbirds.
Lynn@Happier Than a Pig in Mud says
Fun pics! Enjoy them while they're here:@)
Debby Ray says
Breathtaking photos of these lovely hummers! Ours are finally back after leaving us earlier this summer for several weeks! Couldn't figure it out but so glad we can enjoy them again!
They are the most beautiful creatures, aren't they? I love to hear the buzz that means they're around. Like you, we have three feeders. Some years we leave them up as the hummingbirds don't always disappear from our island in winter time. Those that leave come back as early as February/March – such brave and sturdy little birds.
Stunning photos of these gorgeous little birds!!
Debbie Huffaker says
Beautiful photography….your flowers are gorgeous! HOPE you have an awesome day!