one of the most popular birds and the ruby-throated
is the most wide spread. This remarkable tiny bird
migrates non-stop across the Gulf of Mexico each
spring and then back again each fall. Southeastern
Arizona is THE hotspot for observing hummingbirds
and certain areas attract thousands of visitors
each spring and summer to observe the common
species and hope for a rare visitor from
The colorful rufous
hummingbird is normally found in the western half
of the U.S. but wonders widely in the winter and is
showing up on a regular basis (still rare) each
winter in the eastern half of the country. Another
intrepid navigator is the green violet-ear
hummingbird. This hummer is normally found in
Mexico, is rare in Texas, but has been reported as
far north as Canada.
Photograph by Bill
mix of sugar and water should I use in my
hummingbird feeder. Do I need to add red food
commercial mixes are available it is easy to make
your own hummingbird nectar. Simply mix 4 parts
water with one part white granulated sugar. Heat
and stir the mixture until the sugar is completely
dissolved. Allow to cool and your done.
- Do not use brown
sugar or honey.
- You do not need
to add red food coloring.
In hot weather feed
only as much sugar water as the hummingbirds
consume in a day or two. Extended periods of
exposure to hot weather can cause the sugar water
A wide selection of hummingbird feeders is
available from the Hummingbird
Pro Shop -
A Birdzilla.com Specialty Shop. This feeder has a
built-in ant trap.
can I prevent bees and yellow jackets from using my
hummingbird feeders? Ants are getting into my
hummingbird feeder. What can I do?
There are bee
guards to fit over the openings of some feeder
styles. Many saucer-type feeders are designed to
keep the sugar solution away from the bees' mouth
parts. Bees can reach into a feeding portal only
about 1/4-inch, but hummingbirds are able to reach
an inch or more.
For ants, some
feeders have a built-in water trap. Place a little
water in the water trap to prevent the ants from
crawling to the feeding area. You can also purchase
which are mounted above the feeder and filled with
should I take down my hummingbird feeder in the
fall? If I leave it up too long will it prevent the
hummingbirds from migrating?
You may leave your
feeder up as long as hummingbirds are coming to it.
Migration is triggered but the length of the day,
not the temperature so you are not likely to
endanger a hummingbird by having your feeder out
too late in the year.
for more extensive information on