Hummingbird Food or Nectar
Hummingbird nectar is also known as hummingbird food. There are two ways to go about providing your hummingbird with nectar, you can either buy it, or make it. There are several commercially available hummingbird nectar products you can purchase, but try not to purchase any products that are colored red. Red dye is unnecessary to attract hummingbird and can be bad for their tiny little kidneys. You can make homemade hummingbird nectar which can be healthier and less expensive that the store bought variety.
- 1 cup Pure Cane White Granulated Sugar.
- 4 cups hot boiling water
Boil more than four (4) cups of water on the stove top. When you use more than four (4) cups of water, you can adjust to the loss of water from steam. Carefully measure out four (4) cups of boiling water into a large bowl. Add one (1) cup of pure cane white granulated sugar. Mix the pure cane white granulated sugar and water together until all of the sugar is dissolved. Carefully place the mixture into the refrigerator to cool, usually overnight. When mixture is cold, take the mixture out of the refrigerator. You now have a bowl of hummingbird food.
Very carefully, take apart your hummingbird feeder, following the manufactures instructions. Clean the hummingbird feeder with soap and water making sure your hummingbird feeder is clean and free from any debris and/or mold. Carefully pour the hummingbird nectar into the tank of the hummingbird feeder. Don't spill the hummingbird food or you will have an ant invasion in your house, and if you do, clean it up right away with soap and water. Reassemble the hummingbird feeder according to the manufactures instructions.
Place the hummingbird feeder full of hummingbird nectar outside in a quiet location that is out of the way of noise and traffic. The best place is usually outside of a side window so you can watch the hummingbirds come and go as they drink the nectar and enjoy what you have provided for them.
While you hummingbird feeders out, it is important to remember to change the nectar at a minimum of every three days. If you seen white floating strands, or the nectar gets cloudy, or it just doesn't' look right, make sure to take down the feeder and clean it thoroughly. This will not only protect the health of your hummingbirds, your hummingbirds will be more likely to stick around for more.
The recipe needs to be followed exactly as written. Hummingbirds are very sensitive creatures with tiny body organs. Not following the recipe exactly or using substitutions can harm the hummingbirds.
Do not add red food coloring or dye to the hummingbird food.It has no nutritional value and can cause damage to their kidneys. If you have a good hummingbird feeder, there is no need to have red hummingbird food to attract hummingbirds.
Do not use the microwave to boil the water for hummingbird food.Water boiled in a microwave has a tendency to start to rapidly boil over (sometimes described as an explosion) when the water surface is touched causing burns to the hands of the person making the hummingbird food.
Do not put hot hummingbird food into a hummingbird feeder.This can cause the tank on the hummingbird feeder to break and could possible cut the hand of the person filling the tank. Putting hot hummingbird food into a hummingbird feeder can also burn the tongue of a poor unsuspecting hummingbird.
Do not use brown sugar, powered sugar, maple syrup, karo syrup, Splenda, Equal, Sweet'N'Low, or any other type of sugar or sugar substitute.Only use Pure Cane White Granulated Sugar (the white grainy stuff) to make hummingbird food. The chemical makeup of other types of sugars is not the same as Pure Cane White Granulated Sugar and can cause illness and death to a hummingbird. It does not matter what brand of Pure Cane White Granulated Sugar you use, as long as it is the white grainy processed sugar.
Do not use Kool-Aid to make hummingbird food.The chemicals in Kool-Aid are not good for hummingbirds and can cause illness and death to a hummingbird.
Making hummingbird nectar (or hummingbird food) is inexpensive and fun way to keep your hummingbirds happy and coming back for more.