Rainy days and Sundays always get me down when I can not garden!

Sunday, March 31, 2013

No Fooling-Time To Put Out Your Hummingbird Feeders

There is between 325-340 species of hummingbirds in the Western Hemisphere. Out of all those species, the Ruby-throated hummingbird is the most common in our area fallowed by the Rufous hummingbird.  After wintering in Northern Mexico and Central America, the Ruby-throated hummingbird makes its ways back north.  The Rufous hummingbird spends the winter in parts of South Carolina, Georgia, Florida, and parts of the Gulf Coast.

Hummingbirds get the nutrients they need by eating insects.  They drink nectar for fuel and to replenish energy reserves.

You can attract hummingbirds to your yard, and provide a source of energy, by setting out hummingbird feeders.  Place feeders outside starting April 1st to attract the earliest arriving hummers.  Hummingbirds are territorial.  Several feeders placed out of sight of one another will lesson this competition.

To make the nectar:
Mix 1 part sugar to 4 parts water.  Bring to a boil (1-2 minutes) and then cool before placing in feeders.  Boiling helps to deter bacterial and yeast growth. Replace every 3-4 days, going no longer then a week.  Discard old nectar and thoroughly wash feeder before refilling.

Use white granulated sugar only.  Other types of sugars and commercial hummingbird products contain dyes, additives, preservatives, artificial flavors, iron (which is deadly if consumed long-term) and unnecessary nutritional additives.

Hummingbirds begin migrating North in January and reach their breeding grounds by mid-May.  The males set out first, establishing territory and preparing for the arrival of the females.  They return South starting in late August/early September.  Keep your feeders up through October, for any late stragglers 

Fallow the link below to view pictures of Hummingbirds..

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