Not All Hummingbird Nest Located at High Altitudes

Most hummingbird nest are found to be located at higher altitudes. Have you ever wondered why this occurs? Is this true of all species of hummingbirds? If these are questions that you have wanted answered about hummingbirds, this post will provide you with the information you seek.

Most hummingbird nesting sites are built at higher altitudes to protect the embryos. The location which is selected must maintain a temperature that is below 96 degrees F. to help ensure that the embryos do not become fried due to over exposure to extreme high temperatures.

The Ruby-throated Hummingbird is one species of hummingbird that does not absolutely have to have their nesting site located at a higher altitude. There may be other hummingbird species that this is also true of as well, but the reference source I consulted only mentioned the Ruby-throated Hummingbird specifically. The Ruby-throated Hummingbird has learned how to “beat the heat.” This hummingbird will build their nest among a canopy of broadleaf trees and the temperature there averages six degrees cooler and this protects their embryos from the threat of being fried.

Dear Mom

Mom and Hummingbirds

Today I am thinking of my mom on what would have been would have been her 76th birthday. Mom passed away at the age of 72. Even after this long, I still miss her so very much. Spring time and hummingbirds also always remind me of mom because we so enjoyed watching the hummingbirds together in our backyard.

The Ruby-throated Hummingbird is the most common hummingbird found in southeast Texas. I myself have yet to personally see one yet this season, but several friends have told me that they have seen the birds where they live which is not but a few miles away from where I live. Maybe I will be lucky enough to see a hummingbird for myself soon…how I hope so!

Rest assured mom, that anytime I see a hummingbird or discover some piece of fascinating information about the hummingbird, my thoughts will turn to you and wishing you were here for me to share it with. Even though this blog was created after your passing, I believe that you would be proud of all that I have come to know about hummingbirds and that I am sharing this knowledge with other hummingbird enthusiast everywhere.

You may not be here with us physically with us any longer, but you will forever live within my heart. Maybe I will get lucky today and see my first hummingbird of the season. It would seem only fitting for it to occur on what would have been your birthday, as I would see it as a symbolic reminder of you and that my memories of you will forever live within my heart.

Hummingbird Food Hummingbirds

The Hummingbird’s Appatite

If you have observed hummingbirds for very long, you may think that hummingbirds eat constantly. This simply is not true. Here is an explanation of the feeding habits of the hummingbird.

Hummingbirds do eat quite frequently but not constantly, due to the fact that the hummingbird possesses an extremely high metabolic rate. It is this rapid metabolic rate that allows the hummingbird to digest nectar very rapidly and efficiently, and thus enables the nectar to pass entirely through the hummingbird’s digestive system in less than 20 minutes! The activity level of the hummingbird requires that they continually refuel or they would not be able do all that they do.

A hummingbird will feed between 6-8 times per hour with each feeding only lasting about 30 seconds in length. Which is why during daylight hours, the hummingbird will eat frequently for short periods of time and thus it may appear as though they are eating constantly.

At night, the hummingbird will eat as heavily as the nectar supply will allow to ensure that it will survive its overnight fast while maintaining its normal resting metabolic rate. To accomplish this, the hummingbird may store a third of its weight in nectar.

Hummingbirds must eat properly to ensure their very survival, so now maybe you understand more about their need to eat as they do.

Hummingbird Feeders Hummingbird Food

Hummingbirds Prefer Natural Nectar

Hummingbirds prefer to feed from flowers that are in bloom and attract them rather then from feeders whenever possible. This is not to say that hummingbirds will not feed from your feeders because they will, but if given the choice of the natural nectar that flowers produce and homemade nectar solution, the birds will choose the natural nectar while it is most plentiful and readily available. The natural nectar that is found in the flowers is sweeter then homemade nectar solution and hummingbirds like the nectar to be extremely sweet.

Does this mean that you should not put out hummingbird feeders? Absolutely not. All I am not saying is that there will not be as as many hummingbirds at your feeders while the natural nectar supply is plentiful. The hummingbirds will once again begin to frequent your feeders as the various blooms in your yard begin to decrease and the natural nectar supply is not as plentiful as it was previously. Homemade nectar solution is very similar to that of natural nectar which is why the hummingbirds like it so well when the natural nectar supply is no longer plentiful.

Hummingbird Feeders

The Pesky Problem of Ants

Every hummingbird season people have trouble with ants getting into their feeders. This issue can be quite frustrating and may even discourage you from using feeders in your yard. This post will offer some possible solutions to this bothersome dilemma.

The best thing to do to prevent the problem of ants is to block their passage to the feeder. This can be done through the use of a device known as an “ant moat.” It is a plastic cup like device that fits tightly around the hanging wire of the feeder which is then filled with water which will then block the path of the ants to the feeder. There are some hummingbird feeders on the market today that come with “ant moats” but with other feeders you will have to purchase the “ant moat” separately.

Another way to try and keep ants out of the feeder is to use a drip less feeder. Saucer type feeders are designed in such a way that makes them far less likely to drip. After all, you know it is the sugary substance that attracts the ants, so if the feeder is not dripping the ants will be less likely to know the nectar solution is even available.

The next suggestion I have to help try and prevent ants may sound a bit unusual, but several people I know have told me that it works quite well. All you do is to sprinkle some ginger around your feeder pole and then the ants will not go near the area. Why not give this unusual suggestion a try? After all, what have you got to loose by doing so?

You can also prevent ants and other insects from drinking all the nectar in your hummingbird feeder by hanging your feeder using a piece of clear nylon sewing thread. The tread is very fine and slippery, thus preventing the ants or other insects from climbing it and reaching the nectar.

It is my sincere hope that these suggestions will successfully help you solve the problem of ants in your hummingbird feeder. If you have any additional suggestions, please feel free to let us know. Any comments, advice or questions are always welcome.