How to Get Hummingbirds to Nest by You
How to Get Hummingbirds To Nest by You If you would like to see more hummingbirds around your yard you need to provide two sources, food and nesting materials.
In The Spring
Immediately in the spring set up your yard as hummingbird friendly. After a long flight back to their breeding grounds there are only two things on their minds finding a constant food source and setting up their nests.
They Want Food!
A long flight back and all the little guys are looking for is food. If you know when to put up your hummingbird feeders and have them out, your home becomes a favorite.
What Do Hummingbirds Eat?
They Drink Sugar Water
Sugar water help to supply their tiny bodies and healthy metabolism with much-needed energy. You can make your own sugar water easily using the recipe below. Feel free to pin it the image to your Pinterest board to have it on hand.
A Note On Coloring
Red food coloring does not have to be added to any feeder. I understand some companies use coloring in their product using the reasoning that the red dye attracts hummingbirds. While it is true, the color red does attract hummingbirds, simply having a red feeder or any vivid pink or purple will suit the same purpose.
Keep Your Feeders Clean
How does one maintain a clean and healthy feeder for your feathered friends? You should clean out your hummingbird feeder at least once a month, and preferably weekly to kill any harmful bacteria. You can find additional information on my site where I explain the process here.
Additional Post: How to keep ants out of your feeders
Plant Flowers That Offer Nectar
Besides providing sugar water for your friends, you can plant flowers in your landscape read 10 flowers to plant in your yard to attract hummingbirds if you need suggestions.
Flowers provide nectar as a food source. The cardinal wildflower pictured is primarily pollinated by hummingbirds. Other insects find it difficult to navigate the long tubular flowers.
Hummingbirds pollinate many of the wildflowers and invasive species of plants growing along our roadsides and fields. Besides the cardinal flower, they love bee balm, cow vetch, spiderwort, and chicory.
Hummingbirds will also eat small insects that visit the flowers. So, you are providing two additional sources of food for them.
Hummingbirds Want To Build Nests
If they have all the resources available, they have to work less to collect the materials needed. Have a food source close, makes your home the perfect place to raise their young.
One tip that is worth mentioning is that the young hummingbirds will come back to the same yard they were raised in the following spring. Starting the cycle all over again.
Timing is Everything
When to place your feeders and nesting material out in your yard is an important question to ask.
You can find a posting I wrote dealing with this question directly here. The article also includes a link to the migration map for your state so you can predict the arrival time for the hummers to your area.
Materials Used For Nesting
In the fall milkweed plants are bursting with seeds and white fluff late in the season. The fluff isn’t needed to replenish the milkweed population, thus, you can collect the fluff whenever you see it tumbling along the trails.
You can collect milkweed seeds to plant as well.
In spring, you use the same method to collect cattail fluff as you would for milkweed. You can even mix the two together. The birds pick out what they need. If some gets on the ground, no worries. The other birds pick it up for their nests. It is a win-win.
Hummingbirds collect the fluff from the cattail heads, milkweed plants, spider webs, and a variety of tree and ground moss. Having a wealth of nesting material available greatly improves the chance that a hummingbird will choose to nest near you.
Place Fluff In a Suet Feeder Cage
Use a suet cage to hold the fluff for the hummingbirds. You will quickly find additional birds will pick it up to line the inside of their nests as well.
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Gather up all the supplies explained above and YOU will have hummingbirds nesting in your yard and enjoy them all season.
Add To Your Yard
Natural Nesting Material
Purchase natural nesting material to fill your standard size suet cage holders.
The filler will fill a standard suet basket 3 times during the season.
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Hummingbirds only spend 10% – 15% of their time gathering nectar, the remaining time they are perched and at rest.
By adding swings and hummingbird houses to your yard, you can increase your viewing time.
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Top Filling Glass Feeder
This glass feeder has the best design in my humble opinion.
If you are tired of bottom filling your hummingbird feeders – this is for you. A TOP FILLING FEEDER.
Besides being a top filling feeder, the feeder is glass. Glass will last longer than plastic, leaving you with less leaking during the hot summer months preventing bees and ants from occupying your feeders.
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Nesting Materials & Holder
The only nesting source that I know of that is endorsed by the Hummingbird Society is sold by a company called Hummer Helper .
Hummer Helper created a wire hanger that they have painted red to attract hummingbirds. They placed an all-natural bedding material that hummingbirds like to use to line their nests.
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