Hummingbird Food

Not Only Red, Tubular Flowers Attract Hummingbirds

Hummingbirds feed on all types and colors of flowers, not just red tubular ones. Many people mistakenly believe the common misconception that hummingbirds will feed only red tubular flowers. The purpose of this post will be to try and set the record straight regarding this issue.

When selecting a food source, the most important consideration to a hummingbird is the quantity and quality of the nectar source that is available. When selecting a particular flower, the hummingbird will select the flower with the highest nectar output and the richest concentration of sugars, regardless of the shape or color of the flower. Lastly, how the nectar taste is of far greater importance then the color of the flower.

Why not add a lot of color to your yard with a wide range of flowers that are known to attract hummingbirds? You will get the added benefit of having a colorful yard to look at and also increasing the likelihood of seeing the hummingbirds that you wish to attract to your yard.

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Food for Hummingbirds

In this video, Oklahoma Gardening’s Kim Rebek explains that hummingbird feeders can stay out in the landscape well into the fall to help hummingbirds get energy prior to their migration. In addition, you will discover some of the plants on which Oklahoma’s hummingbirds are known to feed.

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Facts About Hummingbirds and Winter

While having lunch today with a group of ladies from my church, we began having a discussion about hummingbirds and winter. This discussion let me know that many people are misinformed about hummingbirds in the winter. Because of my knowledge and love of hummingbirds, I was able to set the record straight concerning these common misconceptions regarding winter and hummingbirds. It is also what has inspired me to write today’s post and I hope that it will enlighten and entertain you.

The normal ratio that is recommended for making homemade nectar solution or sugar water is 4:1. This means four parts water to one part sugar. However, in the winter it is alright to change the ratio of your nectar or hummingbird solution to a ratio of 3:1. I make this point because many people are not aware of this and mistakenly believe that the ratio of nectar solution must always be 4:1. This simply is not true and by changing to a ratio of 3:1, you will be helping to retard the freezing of the nectar solution.

Many people also mistakenly believe that by leaving their hummingbird feeders up in winter that the hummingbirds will not migrate. It is the length of day or photoperiod is what signals to the hummingbird that it is time to migrate and this will occur regardless of whether or not your feeder remains up or not. In other words, the hummingbird will know instinctively when it is time to migrate and the feeder staying up will not stop this.

Many people also mistakenly believe that all hummingbirds must migrate, especially in the colder temperatures of winter. This is not true because not every species of hummingbird migrates. There are also those hummingbirds that are too weak or ill to make the migratory journey any longer or you could have a vagrant hummingbird in your area that is off the path of its journey. These hummingbirds will need to be fed, so it is important that they have a food source available on which to feed.

This is the common misconceptions my friends had about hummingbirds in the winter. If you yourself held any of these misconceptions, I hope that this post has served to inform you on this matter.

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How Much Sugar is In Nectar?

While I have always known that the hummingbird is highly intelligent, I recently found out something concerning the intelligence of the hummingbird which came as a great surprise to me and it may surprise you also.

Believe it or not, hummingbirds actually possess the ability the ability to know how much sugar is in nectar. The hummingbird will reject nectar that contains less then 10% sugar. A hummingbird prefers the sugar content to be about 25%. This is one reason that hummingbirds enjoy homemade nectar solution, because it is very close to the nectar concentration of many flowers which attract hummingbirds.

This post is one which I know my mom would have enjoyed because it combines her love of hummingbirds with discovering unusual facts or information. I hope all of you who read this will also enjoy it.

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The Starts and Stops of Hummingbird Feeding

The hummingbird seems to eat almost constantly throughout the day, but there is a time of day when this begins and ends each day. The hummingbird will feed between 6-8 times per hour, but each meal only last approximately 30-60 seconds in length. Their first meal of the day takes place about ½ hour before sunrise and their last takes place about ½ hour after dark. Within the first few hours of being awake, the hummingbird will have already consumed some 25% of its daily food intake. This is necessary because the hummingbird will be going from the inactive state of torpor, which is very similar to hibernation, to being very active.

If you want to be of help to the hummingbirds, it is important to make sure your feeders remain full with nectar during these times of day. By doing so, you may play an active role in helping to ensure the survival of the hummingbird.