Hummingbirds are a useful--and fascinating--addition to any wildlife garden, not only for their pollination skills, but also for their amazing wingspan and maneuvering. These tiny miracle birds feed on nectar from flowers, so providing native plants with red, tubular flowers is best.
Feeders designed to hold sugar water "nectar" will be used by hummingbirds too. Most models are colored red to mimic their favorite flowers.
How to Mix Your Own Hummingbird Feeder Nectar
- Dissolve one part white sugar in four parts hot water.
- Boil the water if you plan to store the nectar in the refrigerator.
- Never use honey, which ferments easily, or artificial sweeteners, which have no food value for birds. Red food coloring is not recommended as it may be harmful to birds.
- Let the solution cool to room temperature before putting it in your feeder. You can store homemade nectar for up to a week in the refrigerator.
Once you fill your feeder, don't forget to empty, rinse and refill your feeder every two to three days (especially in warm weather) to prevent spoiling. This ensures that hummingbirds won't become sick from drinking bad nectar.