Wednesday, April 6, 2016

Hummers Are On Their Way North, Be Ready!

Every year I look forward to the hummingbird migration that takes place and I watch with bated breath for that first sign that they have found my feeders.

Did you know that you could track the migration?  Yearly, there is a group that posts on a map, where the hummers were seen and diligently marked the date and the location.  That way anyone who is interested can do their little part in the drama that takes places every year as the Hummingbirds move from reasonably warm climates in the winter to the more northern climates for late spring and summer.

2016 Hummingbird Migration Map

Click on the link above and you can see exactly where the Hummers are moving and even add your location and date when you spot them at your neck of the woods.

The best way to have the Hummers appear in your yard is to make sure there is red coloring readily visible and a Hummingbird feeder close by as well.  I take the time to get some red flags (not hard in Canada) and I put them up around my yard.  Hummingbirds can see the color red from miles away and it usually means there is food close by.  They assume the red is some of their favorite flowers and after flying for so many miles, these little dynamites need all the nectar their little bodies can hold.

Planting a Hummingbird Garden, will almost guarantee that you will be visited by these lovely little creatures at some point in the summer months.  They love Cardinal Flower, Anise Sage,  Bergamot or Monarda, Honeysuckle vine, Trumpet vine,  Canna Lilies, Coral Bells, Four O'Clocks, Foxgloves, Hosta, Lupines and Yucca.  There are a number of annual plants that they also like.  Fuschia, petunias, Impatiens, Jewelweed (Balsam) and any number of Salvias species.

I can remember one year I had a row of Canna Lilies planted and I was standing outside by them, when out of the corner of my eye, I saw this little wee bird almost at my ear, beating it wings like crazy.  I thought it was going to perch on my shoulder.  I was so excited to be so close to this wee wonder of the sky.

Hummingbirds will thank you for planting the flowers that they love and having a source of water and a place to rest away from predators.  If you can provide those things, you can be sure that they will come to your house and they will come back year after year.....

I have my favorite hummingbird feeder that I use, and it is filled with a mixture of plain white sugar mixed 1:4,   One part sugar to 4 parts water.  Fill the feeder and set it out where the red lid of the feeder is visible.  I do not use food coloring or anything other sweeteners, just plain white sugar and water, changing the water in the feeders every two or three days....sugar water can spoil in as little as two days.  So clean out the feeder every two to three days to keep the sugar water fresh.  Monthly you should give the feeder a good cleaning making sure to rinse out the feeders with running water. Hummers do not like the taste of soap.....or you can use regular white vinegar to clean the feeders. Just remember to fill them, with a cup or more of sugar water and get them back up again as soon as possible.



Audubon Hummingbird Feeder (NAH1)12 ounce nectar capacity This is my favorite humming bird feeder, but there are others available as well. I personally have found this one to be superior in attracting hummers to my yard and I have tried the other ones. This one is easy to fill, and easy to clean. It has a large bright red cover over the syrup holder and makes it easy for hummers to spot in the yard. So far, it has been the one that has been most successful in attracting and keeping these little wonders close for me to enjoy. Watch this incredible footage of hummingbirds in flight, slowed down, so you can see how much they work to keep themselves in the air...
I hope I have encouraged you to try and help our little wonders of the sky as they delight and dance for us all summer long.

A good friend of mine is a nature photographer who has had many of her pictures featured on Birds and Blooms Magazine. Carol has granted me permission to share with you a beautiful picture of a male Hummingbird, whose countenance I just love.  While they are tiny, they are certainly very majestic and so appealing in color.  I hope you enjoy this little one as much as I do.
Carol L. Edwards Photography: Hummingbirds &emdash; RTHU_7001 CLE
And if you are interested I have also included a link to her site, so that you can fill your eyes with beautiful birds anytime you like...... http://carolledwards.com/ There is beauty in the world and it is there for us to see and enjoy. I hope you did and continue to do so.....Nature is free for all of us!


Note: The author may receive a commission from purchases made using links found in this article.

13 comments:

  1. Gorgeous photo! Hummingbirds really are such lovely guests to invite into your backyard and garden. I like the feeder you have featured Olivia. Much nicer than the taller ones I have had in the past. I would imagine they would be a whole lot easier to clean.

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    1. Dear Miss Mouse, I had the tall ones for years and the hummers did not seem to be attracted to them at all. My friend Carol, who's picture you were admiring, showed me hers and I switched. Now I have no trouble at all encouraging them into my yard.....and they are really easy to clean (another bonus)!

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  2. Olivia, I just mixed up my first batch of hummingbird "fuel" and my feeders are ready and waiting for it to cool. According to the migration map there's been a very recent sighting here in western Arkansas. In fact, my husband thought that he heard a hummingbird a couple of days ago, so he might be right! Last year, by late summer, there were days that I'd have to fill the feeders TWICE! That was a lot of hummingbirds, at least for us, and I'm hoping for a repeat performance this year. Love the feeder that you feature. Some are so very hard to clean and that one obviously would be easy plus I read that it's dishwasher safe, which would be really nice (I have a dedicated toothbrush for scrubbing mine). Carol's photo is amazing! She does such a great job. Thanks so much for encouraging me this morning. I love feeding the birds!

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  3. Olivia, I just mixed up my first batch of hummingbird "fuel" and my feeders are ready and waiting for it to cool. According to the migration map there's been a very recent sighting here in western Arkansas. In fact, my husband thought that he heard a hummingbird a couple of days ago, so he might be right! Last year, by late summer, there were days that I'd have to fill the feeders TWICE! That was a lot of hummingbirds, at least for us, and I'm hoping for a repeat performance this year. Love the feeder that you feature. Some are so very hard to clean and that one obviously would be easy plus I read that it's dishwasher safe, which would be really nice (I have a dedicated toothbrush for scrubbing mine). Carol's photo is amazing! She does such a great job. Thanks so much for encouraging me this morning. I love feeding the birds!

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    1. I have mine ready too.....but we haven't had even a little inkling that they might be around the bush....so I will wait patiently...

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  4. Would love to have a hummingbird feeder, but I live in an apartment, so no place to put one. I've enjoyed by brother-in-law's feeder (and the visiting hummingbirds) on visits to his home in Arkansas. Love the photo you shared.

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    1. Dear Ms. Elf, the photo belongs to a dear friend of mine who is so talented with a camera and lens....If you want more bird pictures check out her website....as for the feeders, so long as you get to enjoy them that's the most importatnt part.....

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  5. Thanks for the great article. I love hummingbirds and my feeder broke last year so I just ordered one of your favorite kind.

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    1. Oh I hope your hummers like them as much as mine. I just find these ones so easy to clean and fill. The longer ones, you need a bottle brush to clean properly and it is messy. Good luck, I'd love to know if they like it too!

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  6. I look forward to my pretty visitors, now that I can finally attract them. Last year I spotted my first one around May 3rd. This year, I'm putting my feeder out earlier. In fact, I'm getting my sugar water ready today.

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    1. If they are in your neck of the woods, and they spot that feeder, they will surely come. Glad you are ready....

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  7. I didn't know about the migration map. Cool! Extraordinary photo. I also have the same hummingbird feeder that is your favorite. So excited to welcome my first hummer today. Glad I had mixed up some fresh nectar yesterday. The wee ones are so hungry when they arrive.

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  8. Yes they are indeed, all that flying makes a little hummer just a tad thirsty. I just finished putting out another feeder, but they have not arrived in my neck of the woods just yet.....soon I hope!

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