Humming with Happiness: 7 Sweet Tips for How to Attract Hummingbirds
Make a hummingbird-friendly yard and choose the perfect hummingbird feeder with these 7 sweet tips from Droll Yankees®!
1. Hummingbirds have ferocious nectar needs.
Hummingbirds need to feed 5 – 8 times every hour, so keeping your hummingbird feeders well supplied with energy-packed nectar is a great way to help these little gems, especially in early spring when natural flower nectar and insects are difficult to find. Homemade nectar will keep in a refrigerator for up to 2 weeks (for a recipe, check out our Hummingbird Feeder Information guide).
2. Offer multiple nectar feeders to appease feisty hummingbirds.
Offer multiple nectar feeders in separate areas of your yard so that one territorial hummingbird can’t dominate the only feeder. The more feeders you put out, the more hummers you can attract! If you have only a few hummingbirds, use several small capacity nectar feeders. If you have two or more hummingbird feeders, hang them 6-15 feet apart, so that a single aggressive hummer can’t control access to every feeder.
3. Choose feeders designed with hummingbirds in mind.
There are many hummingbird feeders on the market, but not all nectar feeders are created equal. Droll Yankees makes quality nectar hummingbird feeders that are easy to clean and feature built-in pest protection, with capacity options to match your local hummingbird needs.
- Easy to Clean. Bacteria can build up quickly, so nectar feeders need to be totally cleaned at least every 5 days—more often in warm weather. Droll Yankees hummingbird feeders are designed for convenient cleaning with bird feeder brushes.
- Pest Protection. Feeders with protected ports and ant moats keep nectar solely for hummingbird enjoyment and reduce contamination risk from ants and bees infiltrating the nectar.
- The Right Capacity. Choose feeders with capacities that match your local hummingbird population. Droll Yankees nectar hummingbird feeders come in a variety of nectar capacity options to match your local hummingbirds’ nectar consumption rates. That way, hummers empty and enjoy your feeders while the nectar is delightfully fresh!
4. Hummingbirds on the fly feed low and high.
Hummingbirds spend most of their lives perching, so if possible, place your nectar feeder on or near a bush or a tree. You can also place hummingbird feeders where you’ll have a clear view of the hummers, even on an easily accessible second-story window. With hanging, window, and pole mounting options, you can position hummingbird feeders almost anywhere. We’ve even heard of hummingbirds visiting a penthouse garden in New York City!
5. Place nectar feeders near flowering plants.
Make it easy for hummingbirds to find your nectar feeders by placing them near hanging potted flowers. You can also tie a red ribbon around the nectar feeder’s hanging rod to get their attention. Offering nectar feeders in early spring—before migrating hummingbirds are even expected—helps early bird arrivals and encourages these hummingbirds to stay in your area.
6. Pollinator gardens attract hungry hummers.
Make hummingbirds feel at home in your yard! Plant flowers that provide natural food sources for hungry hummingbirds. Hummers do not live on nectar alone; tiny insects satisfy their protein needs. They catch them on the fly, in flowers, and on spider webs. Leaving spider webs in place is another great way to help hummers, as spider silk is a common material in hummingbird nest construction. It’s always a good idea to avoid pesticide use in your gardening, as even trace amounts can be devastating for tiny hummer bodies. Embrace the wild side of your yard!
These hummingbird-favorite flowers make for beautiful pollinator gardens:
- American Columbine
- Bee Balm
- Butterfly Milkweed
- Coral Bean
- Lemon Bottlebrush
- Mimosa Tree
- Evening Primrose
- Red Buckeye
- Red Impatiens
- Red Salvia
- Tiger Lily
- Trumpet Honeysuckle
- Trumpet Vine
7. Provide fresh nectar for hummingbird health.
If you place a nectar feeder in full sun for your viewing enjoyment, just remember to check the condition of the nectar more often. As with all bird feeders, it’s crucial for the health of the birds that you keep your hummingbird feeders clean. Use a hummingbird feeder brush and nectar port brush with a cleaning solution that won’t harm the hummers. You’ll need to clean your hummingbird feeder at least every 5 days, and more often in warm weather, as nectar easily spoils in the sun and heat. Droll Yankees hummingbird feeders are quick & easy to disassemble for frequent cleanings.