Rufous…..Calliope…..Broad-tailed…..Black-chinned, learn more about Montana’s Hummingbirds.
April to September
A hummingbird’s diet is 50% tiny insects on flowers and plants and 50% nectar from flowers, plus nectar from your feeders.
- 4 cups water….. 1 cup sugar
- Bring water to boil then stir in sugar. Return to boil until the water is clear, about 30 seconds.
- NO RED FOOD COLORING!!
- Cool and fill feeders 1/3 full. Store the remainder in a covered glass container in the fridge. Carry filled feeder in upright position outside, invert and hang. Fill feeders to capacity mid-June or when more hummers arrive.
WHEN TO HANG FEEDERS
- April 15 or soon after…usual arrival time of our tiny “Flying Flowers”
WHERE TO HANG FEEDERS
- Next to a window, from an overhang, over the window, or on the side of the window frame. They seldom hit the window as their attention is drawn to the feeder.
- Place only one feeder at the side of your home by a window. East or North is best.
- Try to put up two feeders. Three or four is even better so aggressive males cannot dominate each feeder and other males, females and young can feed.
- When hanging feeders on a South or West window, hand from the overhang of roof, porch, or patio so feeders will be shaded for part of the day. The continuous sun heats the nectar, causes the fluid to cloud and/or develop a black mold.
- Hang your feeders at the same windows each year. The same adults and/or offspring will often return to your home, to the very place your feeders were the previous season.
WHEN & HOW TO CLEAN FEEDERS
- If nectar becomes cloudy or has black mold inside, take inside and pour it out.
- Take feeder completely apart and rinse with very hot water, wash with detergent, rinse with hot water again and put the feeder back together. No need to dry the parts.
- Refill the clean feeder with fresh nectar from your supply in the fridge or make a new batch. Carry clean, filled feeder in upright position outside, invert, and hang.
- When the feeder is empty, not cloudy, or moldy, there is no need to clean with detergent each time. Take apart, rinse well with very hot water, put back together, and refill.
- The next time you refill your feeder, carry it outside, invert the feeder and stand quietly holding the feeder from your hand. You may have the awesome and beautiful experience of a hummer drinking from the feeder hanging from your hand!
Montana’s Hummingbirds will fill their tiny bellies from sunup to sundown with brief resting periods. Watch from inside close to a feeder and you will see one perching above or near the feeder on a twig of a tree, bush or flower stem, digesting a meal, and guarding that feeder. Males are more aggressive, but females can be aggressive as well.
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