Keep Hummingbirds Coming Back to Your Yard
Video by Jonathan Parrish
Hummingbirds are now out in full force. The arrival of these tiny acrobats marks the beginning of spring, and people love to put out feeders for them. It’s no wonder we want to attract them for a closer look. Weighing less than an ounce, they can hover in midair and fly upside down and backwards.
They have voracious appetites because they expend so much energy. They can eat up to half their body weight per day. But you might be surprised to find out that they eat more than nectar. They also eat insects and spiders.
Homemade nectar is a sure way to draw them into your yard. To make it, mix one part refined sugar with four parts water. Boil the mixture until the sugar is dissolved. Cool and then pour in your feeders. Refrigerate any unused portion. Use only refined sugar. Other sugars, including brown, organic, honey and sugar substitutes, can be harmful to the birds.
Adam Rohnke, an MSU Extension wildlife biologist, shows you how to make homemade nectar.
If you want to increase their visits without wearing yourself out filling up feeders, the right mix of flowering plants will keep them coming back.
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