Facts About Hummingbirds
- They are the smallest migrating bird.
- The Ruby-throated hummingbird beats its wings about 53 times a second
- Ruby-throated hummingbirds are native breeders in Pennsylvania, and rufous are occasional visitors to the state. Reports of ruby-throated usually start coming in as early as late March, but early to mid-April is a better estimate of when the males will start arriving. You can put your feeders out in late March to catch some early arrivals, but mid-April is probably the best time.
- Ruby-throated hummingbirds are eastern North America’s only breeding hummingbird. But in terms of area, this species occupies the largest breeding range of any North American hummingbird.
- The name hummingbird comes from their wings’ humming noise as they beat so fast.
- Hummingbirds are the only birds that can fly backward
- Hummingbirds have no sense of smell
- The average weight of a hummingbird is less than a nickel
- Please keep your hummingbird feeder stocked with nectar through early fall. This will help provide the hummingbirds with helpful energy as they start their fall migration
- You should take them down at the first sign of frost
Flowers for Hummingbirds
Here is a list of plants that attract hummingbirds:
-Virginia Blue Bells
Shrubs and Trees
-Scarlet Runner Bean
-Trumpet Honey Suckle
You can help these hardworking foragers get the nutrients they need by providing them with their favorite post-workout meal — nectar. This hummingbird sweet treat can be made at home with simple ingredients. By filling your feeder with this DIY delight, you can complement nectar-rich plants and watch these beautiful little birds feed and flitter all day.
Here is how to make hummingbird nectar in just a few quick steps
- Pure white cane sugar: Pure white cane sugar is the most important ingredient when making homemade hummingbird food. Organic cane sugar, “raw” cane sugar, brown sugar, honey, agave syrup, artificial sweeteners or any unrefined sugars that are brown in color should NOT be used in homemade hummingbird nectar. Other sugars may be loaded w/ iron or are a rookery for germs and bacteria, all of which can be detrimental to hummingbirds. Pure White Cane Sugar is what works best!
- 3-4 cups of water: I’ve never used anything other than water straight from the tap, and my hummingbirds come back year after year, but any filtered water, spring water, or unchlorinated water will do just fine! The standard ratio for a hummingbird nectar recipe is 4:1, but 3:1 works great, although it may spoil a bit quicker.
- DON’T USE RED DYE! There is no need to use any red food dyes in your homemade hummingbird nectar! The brightly colored glass and flowers on your hummingbird feeder will work to attract the hummingbirds much better than the harmful dye ever will.
- Bring the sugar and water to a simmer, stir until the sugar is dissolved, remove from the heat, and allow to cool to room temperature.
- Fill your feeders w/ your hummingbird nectar and watch as your little birdies chirp and zip about in a fit of happiness! (don’t get discouraged if they don’t come right away. It may take a little while for them to find it if you have never had one before. But if you planted flowers and put the feeder up should help)
- It is important that your feeders are cleaned and refilled at least twice a week in hot weather (summer) and once a week in cooler weather (spring/fall) to prevent the growth of mold.
Stop by Gasper to find a large selection of Hummingbird feeders and other bird feeders, houses, baths, and more!
If you truly love nature, you will find beauty everywhere.