Hummingbird Feeders

Keeping Feeders Up Won’t Stop Hummingbird Migration

It is a very common myth is that keeping hummingbird feeders up too long will stop hummingbirds from migrating. This is simply not true! Hummingbirds have an instinctive urge to migrate and this is not based on whether feeders are up or not. When migration occurs is determined by a change in the length of the day or photoperiod. It is quite common for hummingbirds to begin their migration journey when there are still plenty of flowers and feeders available. Male hummingbirds often begin their migration journey two weeks before the female does so. It will depend on the species as to when they choose to begin their migration. 
Hummingbird Feeders Hummingbird Food

Important Reminders about Homemade Hummingbird Nectar Solution

  • When making homemade hummingbird nectar solution, use only ordinary white cane sugar to sweeten the solution and no other type of sugar substitute. 
  • To make your own nectar solution, use a ratio of 1 part white cane sugar to 4 parts water.
  • This mixture approximates the average sucrose content (about 21%) of the flowers favored by North American hummingbirds, without being so sweet it attracts too many insects.
  • The nectar solution can be stored in the refrigerator for up to two weeks.
  • It’s not absolutely necessary to boil the water, but this will help the sugar dissolve completely. The microorganisms that cause fermentation don’t come from the water; they are transported to the feeder on hummingbird bills.
Hummingbird Feeders

Explaining the Types of Hummingbird Feeders

There are two main types of hummingbird feeders the bottle or tube feeder and the saucer style hummingbird feeder. This post will discuss each of them. If you haven’t already purchased one or more hummingbird feeders for your yard, it is my hope that that this information will help you make a more informed purchase.
The bottle or tube type of hummingbird feeder is usually made of glass or plastic.  This type of feeder  often contains red plastic flowers and bee-guards which are little plastic screens that keep insects away from the sugar solution on the feeding ports. These types of feeders are very popular with hummingbirds because they simulate the tube shape of many nectar-bearing flowers. The main draw back to this type of feeder is that they tend to leak, because of the sun—the air that is trapped in the top of the bottle expands as it warms and pushes the nectar out.
It is important to note, there absolutely nothing wrong with this type of hummingbird feeder. I just want to point out that this type of feeder is more likely to leak, but that problem can be addressed. My goal is to try and provide you with as much accurate information as possible so you can make the most informed purchase possible.
Saucer-shaped hummingbird feeders are usually made of plastic. This type of hummingbird feeder has feeding ports in the top, making them bee-and wasp-proof.  Saucer feeders are better than bottle feeders in direct sunlight, because it won’t leak.
If you enjoy watching hummingbirds, one of the easiest things that you can do to attract them to your yard is to use a hummingbird feeder. Don’t let all the various varieties of feeders that are available on the market today overwhelm you. Please use the information contained here to help you make a more educated and informed purchase. Then hang out your feeder and wait for the birds to come…you will be glad you did and so will the birds.
If you are interested in looking at some hummingbird feeders, there are a few hummingbird feeders on the blog. If you should need to know the exact address of the blog it is as follows: You can click on any of the feeders shown there and get more information on the specific one which is of interest to you. You can also find many more hummingbird feeders at: the following address: There is a link on the home page entitled hummingbird feeders and if you click it you can see the various feeders available there. When you find a feeder that you are interested in, just click on it and you will be taken to where you can obtain additional information about it or even purchase it if you should wish to do so.
Hummingbird Feeders

Important Considerations Concerning Hummingbird Feeders

Having a hummingbird feeder in your yard is probably the easiest way to attract the hummingbirds to your yard. Having one will help attract these birds to your yard and can provide you with many hours of bird watching enjoyment due to the increased number of hummingbirds that will likely be drawn to your yard, but there are several important things to keep in mind regarding hummingbird feeders.
It is important to make sure the feeder is easy to take apart and clean, because it should be washed frequently. You can even clean the hummingbird feeder by running it through the dishwasher.   Since you will need to clean the feeder frequently, the fill hole should be large enough for you to reach in while cleaning.
The best way to feed hummingbirds is by using a nectar feeder. There are several things to keep in mind when using nectar feeders.   The feeder should not be located in direct sun, as this causes the sugar solution to spoil rapidly. The feeder must be placed high enough on a branch so that squirrels and other predators cannot feed from it. A mixture of sugar and water is the best way to attract humming birds. This blend is as close as you can come to flower nectars. Honey, molasses or any other artificial sweeteners should never be used to feed hummingbirds. Though they eat small insects for protein, hummingbirds also rely heavily on flower and prepared nectar for their energy needs.
It is important to hang your humming bird feeder shortly before spring. If a hummingbird is drawn to the feeder at this time, it will likely return throughout the season, well into fall. There is no specific or exact date at which hummingbird feeders should be put up. Hummingbird feeders should be put up in time for their arrival. This will vary greatly depending upon where you are located. It is important to know the average date they arrive in your specific area, because you will want to get your feeder up 5-10 days prior to the average date of their arrival in your area. This will increase the possibility that the birds will see your feeder up and take a drink, and possibly stay for the season in your backyard!
It is important that the hummingbird feeder be clean or the hummingbirds will not feed from your feeder. The feeder should be colorful, preferably red and orange, and it can have red ribbons trailing off the feeder so it can be easily spotted by the humming bird.
It is impossible to provide an exact date by which time hummingbird feeders should be taken down. It is believed that migrating hummingbirds may be helped by feeders that are left up until at least two weeks have passed since seeing your last hummingbird. Contrary to what many people believe, hummingbirds will migrate even if your hummingbird feeders are not taken down. Males generally migrate several weeks ahead of immature hummingbirds, which are also known as new hatchlings, and females. When migration occurs is determined by a change in the length of the day or photoperiod. 
If you keep this information in mind, you will have a greater chance of attracting and keeping the hummingbirds in your yard. The hummingbirds will be very happy and content and you will get to enjoy watching one of most beautiful and amazing creatures—the hummingbird. Happy hummingbird watching everyone!
Hummingbird Feeders

Solving the Problem of Bees and Wasps

Hummingbird feeders are the easiest way to attract hummingbirds to your yard. Bees and wasps are a common problem that many people face with their hummingbird feeders. Here are some tips that may help you solve the problem of bees and wasps and therefore be better able to enjoy the hummingbirds that you are trying so hard to attract and enjoy.
1. Buy a feeder with bee guards: Many of the hummingbird feeders available on the market today come equipped with plastic guards. "Bee guards" are a screen-like device that fits over the feeder wholes that makes it difficult for the insects to reach the feeding solution. Unfortunately, many of these hummingbird feeders will also be prone to dripping which will lessen the effectiveness of the bee guards. To help solve this problem, you can use the following suggestions:
  • Always fill the feeder completely full with cool nectar. The stopper should be inserted and the feeder quickly inverted to avoid any air entering the feeder. Tube feeders operate on a vacuum principle, and the feeder must be filled completely full in order for the vacuum to form!
  • Only hang your feeder in shade or partial shade. The cooler the feeder, the less likely it is to drip.
  •  Make sure to keep the feeder very clean by regularly cleaning the vessel with hot water and a bottle brush. Soap should not be used during cleaning, because its residue may cause your feeder to drip. As an alternative, try periodically using a vinegar rinse to thoroughly clean your feeder and then rinse well with hot water.
  •  As a last resort, the stopper assembly can be placed in very hot water to soften the tube. You can bend it slightly to increase the angle. This will stop dripping, but might make it more difficult for nectar to come down the tube.
  •  If the dripping of this type of feeder is too much for you, then try a top-feeding hummingbird feeder instead.
 2. Try moving the feeder:  Sometimes just moving the feeder, even just a few feet, will trick the insects into thinking that it’s gone and they won’t find it. Another suggestion is to take the feeder down for a day or two until the bees and wasp quit looking for it. Once the feeder is back up again, the hummingbirds will find it again, because the birds don’t give up looking for it as quickly as the insects do. 
3. Give the insects their own feeder: Personally, I had never before heard of this prior to doing some research on the Internet, but I have since heard from many people that this is a very effective technique.  This will require the use of separate hummingbird feeders, one for the bees and wasps and one for the hummingbirds. Bees and wasps are more attracted to higher concentrations of sugar, so in their feeder use a nectar ratio of 1 part sugar to 3 parts water.   In the hummingbird’s feeder, use a ratio of 1 part sugar to 5 parts water. This ratio is not as sweet as the normal nectar solution that is made with a ratio of 1 to 4, but the hummingbirds will still drink it and it will be far less attractive to the bees and wasps. It will take a few hours for the bees and wasps to find their own feeder and it should be placed away from the hummingbirds own feeder. 
4. Buy a saucer-type Hummingbird feeder:   This type of feeder is usually made of plasticThis type of feeder is far more drip proof because the feeding ports are located in the top, so they’re not as likely to attract insects. Also, the nectar level will be lower and out of reach to the insects, but not out of reach to the hummingbirds because of their long tongues. This type feeder also does better in direct sunlight then other types of feeders.
I hope these suggestions will help you solve the frustrating problem of bees and wasp in your hummingbird feeders. If you have any other suggestions on how to solve this problem, please let us know. We want to hear from you and I’m sure anyone who has experienced these problems before would appreciate your advice. Happy hummingbird watching everyone!