Droll Yankees Offers Helpful Hints for Hummingbird Feeding and Maintaining a Backyard to Maximize Visitors to Nectar Bird Feeders

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Droll Yankees offers tips for choosing the perfect nectar feeder and making a hummingbird friendly yard, including features to look for in a feeder, how to mix the ideal nectar at home, where to place nectar bird feeders in a backyard, and which garden plants are most attractive to hungry hummingbirds.

Hummingbirds visit Droll Yankees' Little Flyer 4 Hummingbird Feeder

The return of the hummingbirds in spring is one of the most exciting times of year for many bird watchers.

The return of the hummingbirds in spring is one of the most exciting times of year for many bird watchers. Here are some tips on how to choose a nectar feeder and get a yard ready to play host to these gems.

Choosing a Feeder: There are many kinds of nectar feeders on the market. Pick a feeder that is safe and easy for hummingbirds to feed from. Keep these key features in mind:
1. Easy to clean - Feeders must be cleaned at least every 5 days, more often in warm weather, to avoid bacteria build up. Pick feeders that can be totally scrubbed. Bottle feeders with narrow necks should be avoided. A brush should be able to reach and clean the entire inner surface of the feeder easily.
2. Pest Protection - Feeders with protected ports and ant moats will keep the nectar for hummingbird enjoyment only and keep ants and bees out. Avoid feeders with yellow feeding accents. They are more likely to attract yellow jackets.
3. Correct Capacity - Choose feeders with capacities suited for the hummingbird population in the yard. If there are only a few hummingbirds around, use several small capacity feeders, placed out of sight of each other so that one dominant bird cannot control them. To conserve nectar, feeders should not hold more nectar than can be consumed before cleaning time. This also helps to create a routine cleaning regimen.

Nectar needs: Hummingbirds need to feed between 5 and 8 times every hour. Keeping feeders well supplied with nectar is crucial, especially in early spring when natural flower nectar and insects are not as readily available. Making nectar at home instead of using a pre-made mixture is easy and ensures there are no preservatives or coloring. Mix 4 parts water to 1 part sugar. Boiling the water helps the sugar dissolve but is not mandatory. Regular table sugar (sucrose) is what hummingbirds seem to like best and is the most digestible for them. Regular tap water is fine to use. Hard water will give birds extra electrolytes. If water is soft, add a tiny pinch of salt to each quart of nectar. Nectar will keep in the refrigerator for up to 2 weeks. Do not use any red dye, honey, brown sugar, or sugar substitutes, as they could all be harmful to hummingbirds.

Attract them to the yard: Take a few steps to ensure hummingbirds are at home in a backyard. Plant flowers to provide natural food sources for them. Don’t use pesticides. A small amount can adversely affect their tiny bodies. Insects also provide hummingbirds their protein needs. They catch them on the wing, in flowers, and on spider webs. Consider leaving spider webs in place. Spider silk is also a common material favored in hummingbird nest construction.

Placement: With options for window mounting, hanging, or pole mounting, hummingbird feeders can be placed almost anywhere. If a nectar feeder must be placed in full sun, remember to check the condition of the nectar often. In order to help hummingbirds find the feeders more easily, place them near a hanging flowering plant or tie a red ribbon around the hanging rod. If the feeders are out in early spring, early arrival hummingbirds arriving from migration may be enticed to stay.

Visit http://www.drollyankees.com to learn more about feeding birds and to purchase bird feeding products.

In 1969, Droll Yankees started a bird feeding revolution with Model A-6F, the first tubular bird feeder. Since then, Droll Yankees has built on that success, continually developing innovative approaches to bird feeding that benefit both the birds and Droll Yankees customers. Generations of bird lovers have appreciated Droll Yankees’ quality construction, functional simplicity, and commitment to American workers. Droll Yankees offers a Lifetime Warranty Against Squirrel Damage and will replace any squirrel-damaged or defective parts, free of charge.

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Christen Brewer
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