Wow Jill, I just noticed the beautiful whitish pink hummingbird you posted before! Very different and very pretty!
Great photo Sandra! Here is a pic of baby hummingbirds in their nest....aren't they soooo tiny and precious? Isn't it amazing how neat the little nest is built with padding, etc.
Hummingbirds are so cute!!! I love them...
I'm not sure where this little guy is from but he is beautiful! I get the Rubythroats in my area! So cute but very territorial!
Some other flowers that attract hummingbirds are:
- Butterfly Bush
- Snap Dragon
Another name for Lantana is Ham -n-Eggs. It is so easy to grow with very little care. You can take 1 clipping from it and plant somewhere else in your yard and another one will grow! Butterflies and hummingbirds love them!
Salvias (Salvia spp.)
Bee Balm (Monarda spp.)
Giant Hyssop (Agastache spp.)
esp. Trumpet Honeysuckle
esp. Cardinal Flower (L. cardinalis)
Flowering Maple (Abutilon pictus)
Hollyhock (as Alcea rosea)
Rose of Sharon
Evening Primrose Family
Fireweed (Epilobium angustifolium)
California fuchsia (Zauschneria californica)
Fuchsias (Fuchsia spp.)
esp. Cypress Vine
Red Morning Glory
Bush Morning Glory
Chuparosa (Justicia californica)
Mexican Honeysuckle (J. spicigera)
Shrimp Plant (J. brandegeana)
Flowers are the natural way to attract hummingbirds to your yard. However, for many people a flower garden is not an option: no space for a garden; no time to tend it; and perhaps no skill or interest in the garden approach. If you are one of these people, then man-made feeders filled with a mixture of water and ordinary table sugar (sucrose) are an important alternative. Even for those with gardens, feeders provide a supplement to flowers that increases the likelihood of attracting hummingbirds.
Sugar, whether from a flower or a feeder, is essential for a hummingbird's diet. It provides the quick fuel for flight that it needs during waking hours; it is not "junk food." Human metabolism is not comparable to hummingbird metabolism! Hummingbirds rely on insects and tiny spiders to provide protein for their diet, since neither flowers not sugar-water mixtures will provide it.
Tests have shown that hummingbirds prefer sucrose in flower nectar over other sugars such as fructose and glucose, so your feeder, using the proper ratio of table sugar (sucrose), becomes a good approximation to the flowers hummers like best.
FORMULA: 4 parts water to 1 part sugar. The water should not be distilled. The sugar should be white table sugar, not turbinado sugar, brown sugar, or other forms. Use no artificial colors (red dye does NOT help attract hummingbirds) or other additives. Never use honey or artificial sweeteners, for to do so may kill the birds. There is anecdotal information that hummers prefer cane sugar over beet sugar, although the reasons for this are not apparent.
PREPARATION: The ingredients can be mixed using cold water. Experience has shown that mixtures do not go bad as quickly if the water is boiled, and the sugar added to it. Do not continue to boil the mixture, as it will turn to syrup. Unused portions of a mixture can be stored in the refrigerator for up to a week.
FEEDER DESIGN: The most important consideration in choosing a feeder is your ability and personal willingness to keep it clean, because feeders vary widely in their ease of cleaning. Feeders with parts that cannot be easily cleaned should be avoided. Some designs can be disassembled and washed in a dishwasher, a convenience but not a necessity. Most all designs work, but some "vacuum" designs cause a dripping problem which will inevitably attract ants. Perches on the feeder are optional, but should be removable if being used when temperatures are at or below freezing. Feeders also vary widely in their attractiveness, from the beautiful to the ugly; be sure you want to look at the design every day!
FEEDER MAINTENANCE: Any mixture of sugar and water will ferment and host the growth of mold spores. This limits the usefulness of the mixture, and it must be discarded regularly to avoid these problems. In moderate temperatures, such as 60-85 degrees F. (15-30 degrees C.) a mixture should last about 3-4 days; less at higher temperatures, slightly longer at cooler temperatures. Regardless of the mixture's age, discard it immediately if you see cloudiness or you see mold growing in the feeder. Always clean a feeder thoroughly before refilling; do not "top off" a feeder which is low in mixture. Clean with warm water and detergent, and rinse very thoroughly. Use only as much mixture as is being used between refillings to reduce waste. Every few weeks, rinse the cleaned feeder with dilute (1 tbsp/quart) unscented bleach, then rinse VERY thoroughly.
You can also substitute white vinegar for bleach, without diluting.
Hummingbirds are tiny birds weighing 2 to 20 grams. They feed on nectar and insects, as well as tiny spiders. They have long and slender beaks and extensible tongues. They always have 10 primary feathers, 6 or 7 secondaries, nearly always 10 rectrices (tail feathers), and an extremely large sternum. Their feet are tiny and not well suited for walking but well designed for perching.
Adult males often display iridescent plumage, rarely females (sexual dimorphism).
Their wings are relatively long and pointed, usually having short arms and forearms but long hands. They fly with a unique method of rotating the entire wing, with little or no flexing of the wrist or hand joints.
As a result of their unique but inefficient means of flight, they must consume enormous amounts of food each day, with nectar often amounting to twice their body weight. Insects provide protein for their diet.
The exact number of species is perhaps 330, although not all scientists agree. This makes them the second largest family of birds after flycatchers. They are found only in the New World, from Alaska in the north to Tierra del Fuego in the south. Most species are found in the tropics.Attracting and Feeding Hummingbirds
Hummingbirds can be found in a wide variety of environments in the New World, from the high Andes (over 4000 m.) to lowlands, and from dry desert areas to the rain forests. In all these environments, their source of nutrition is primarily nectar from flowers, as well as sources of protein such as insects and tiny spiders. They also need places to perch and rest during the day and to sleep at night, usually trees or large plants such as cacti. Nearly all must bathe regularly. Understanding these essential facts is the key to attracting them to a yard or other location.
Thank you, Jenna! Hummingbirds are really miraculous works of God! They travel so far and are so dainty. I wish they would eat out of my hands. Here is one at my feeder last year. I can't wait til they return.
This post was modified from its original form on 15 Feb, 19:22
These amazing birds I lived amongst me and surrounded our cabin in the Northern Rockie's in Alberta Canada, a sourse of endless joy and pleasure....I will never forget....
Vicki asked me to open a thread on this.....here goes my dear friend...I will share what little I know of with great pleasure xxxxxx Jenna
This post was modified from its original form on 15 Feb, 19:16