Hummingbirds are little colorful birds with luminous plumage, which most people find attractive. They also flap their wings amazingly fast and produce a humming noise while at it, probably another reason why they are a remarkable sight. That they can move in all directions, right, left, upwards, downwards, upside down and, even backwards is a bonus, a very sweet bonus. The diet of these little birds consists primarily of flower nectar, pollen, tree sap and insects. If you choose to hang hummingbird feeders to attract their activity, then here is one hummingbird food recipe you should try.
Homemade hummingbird nectar recipe
To make this hummingbird food formula, you need four parts water and one part sugar. However, you are free to vary these, as you so desire, though the variance need not skid far off this benchmark.
Start by boiling the water then keenly add the measured portion of granulated sugar. Stir this mixture thoroughly until the sugar dissolves completely. Boil the resultant mixture for an additional two minutes. Boiling the nectar is important as it helps prevent the formula from going bad rapidly. It is advisable that you bring the nectar to cool to room temperature before serving in clean hummingbird feeders.
The hummingbird food recipe described above essentially is water-sugar mixture, which can ferment a lot faster especially if exposed to a lot of heat and sun. Exposure to extreme heat may just as well precipitate growth of both mold and bacteria. For this reason, you need to change the nectar every three to five days and, a lot often during summer.
While the above recipe produces nectar that almost replicates what nature provides, it may be appropriate only during spring and summer. Initially when attracting hummingbirds to your backyard, you may need to make the nectar a little more concentrated. The appropriate ratio in such instances is three portions of water to one portion of sugar. You can then revert to the usual ratios soon after the birds have settled.
Great pointers to help you make the most of homemade nectar
Hummingbirds are delicate birds. Feeding them as such requires an equal measure of intricate care. These pointers should help you ensure that feeding them is a productive and enjoyable activity.
Use bigger measuring containers to make large batches of nectar – Firstly, hummingbirds are surprisingly prolific in their feeding and, their small size should not deceive you. Their horrendous appetite is because they need to provide for their fast breathing rate and even faster heartbeat. Their small size too does increase surface area to volume ratio tribulations. Hummingbirds as such, need a lot more energy to keep their internal body temperatures stable. If you want to keep these beautiful birds in your backyard a little longer, you must make enough nectar.
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Keep honey and artificial sweeteners out of the nectar – Though hummingbirds need a lot of energy, remember that they are excessively delicate and, react unfavorably to some of the obvious ingredients. Honey for instance, may lead to tongue infections in hummingbirds. Some of these infections may be fatal and, may mar or subdue the color that you expect hummingbirds bring to your backyard. Artificial sweeteners on the other hand, add no nutritional value to the nectar and as such, should not feature in the homemade hummingbird food.
Food coloring and red dyes are unnecessary – A lot many people in a bid to attract hummingbirds, often add food colors or dyes to the nectar they intend to feed the birds. This is unnecessary. Instead, consider planting hibiscus, purple coneflower, hollyhock, fuchsias, roses and, clematis in your backyard as these will suffice.
You can store homemade nectar – The feeding demands of hummingbirds are great, which is the only reason why you need to make a lot of it. Note however, that you can store this nectar for up to two weeks so you need not worry about how to handle excess food you cannot immediately use. The most effective way of storing the nectar is freezing it in ice cube trays, which you can then bring to room temperatures any time you are ready to use it.
Hummingbirds are enchanting and their buzzing act, captivating. If you want to enjoy the dazzling lives of these little birds, then this hummingbird food recipe and the accompanying tips should set you well on your way.
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