I adore hummingbirds. I have a few plants in my yard that attract them, but I’ve been meaning for some time to hang a feeder to entice even more of them to come around. An employee at a local plant nursery assured me that if I put one up, the hummingbirds would appear. And boy, did they! Our new feeder has been visited by several hummingbirds, sometimes three of them are hovering around it and chirping at each other to decide who gets to drink first.
I looked at hummingbird feeders at a couple of stores before I bought one, and noticed hummingbird “food” for sale near the feeders. I really couldn’t believe that these products have artificial red food coloring in them (okay, maybe I can believe it, but it’s disappointing). I have looked into other products that state their red color is derived from “all natural” sources, but that doesn’t make me feel any better. The red color is used to attract the birds, but if you use a red feeder, the water does not need to be colored.
You can make hummingbird food at home with sugar and water. The ratio of sugar to water is 1:4. So that’s what I did. I used organic cane sugar and filtered water from my tap. If you live in an area with fluoridated water, I would suggest using bottled mineral water.
I hung the feeder in the evening, and the next morning we had visitors. In fact, the feeder has only been out for four days now and the water is almost gone.
Those magical little birds are a joy to watch. If you’re going to put out a feeder to attract them into your yard, please offer them a homemade nectar free of food coloring, fluoride, chlorine, and other harmful chemicals.
An average sized hummingbird can flap its wings up to 80 times per second.
Anna’s Hummingbirds, a breed found here in Washington, do not migrate at all. You can leave your feeder out all year for them (as long as the temp stays above 27 degrees, otherwise the sugar water will freeze).
A hummingbird’s heart beat can range from 50 to 1,260 beats per minute.
There are over 300 known species of hummingbirds in the Americas.
Hummingbirds can fly upside down, and hover in midair.