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Backyard Hummingbirds Are Easy to Attract

Updated on November 11, 2014
Make the solution and hummingbirds will come
Make the solution and hummingbirds will come

It's Easy to Attract Hummingbirds

Attracting hummingbirds to your yard is easier than you might think. With the right feeder and homemade solution you will be well on your way to a delightful show.

Almost every part of the continental United States has at least one variety of hummingbird. It is fun to see them buzzing around the feeder in the yard but if you are alert, you will also see them in the wild. These birds love pink and red flowers but keep a look out around columbines, jewel-weeds, phloxes and morning glories too. In the milder areas of the country hummingbirds can be spotted year around.

Photo by AnnCam@Flick

Hummingbird by By TooFarNorth@Flickr
Hummingbird by By TooFarNorth@Flickr

Native Hummingbirds

Hummingbirds are native only to the Americas and the early explorers like Columbus wrote about them in his log. Early colonists were unaware that hummingbirds even existed.

Of the 330 species of hummingbirds, all are found only in the Western Hemisphere and only 26 species of hummingbirds have ever been seen north of Mexico.

Set Up Your Feeder - If you feed them--they will come

Inexpensive feeders work great!
Inexpensive feeders work great!

The first step to attract hummingbirds to your yard is to purchase a feeder. There are many different kinds and styles depending on your budget. One thing is for certain -- the hummingbirds only care about what is inside the feeder so the cost and style is not an issue for them.

photo by flythebirdpath

1 cup Sugar and 4 cups Water Make the Solution
1 cup Sugar and 4 cups Water Make the Solution

Make Your Own Feeder Solution

Easy and Inexpensive!

Making the solution to put in your hummingbird feeder is so easy. All you need is sugar and water.

1. Mix one part sugar and four parts boiling water in a container and stir until all the sugar is dissolved. This mixture will be similar to the nectar found in their favorite flowers.

2. This solution will only last for three or fours days before it needs to be replaced due to the contamination of mold that will occur, especially in the heat of summer.

3. Hot water and a bottle brush once a week will keep your feeder clean.

TIP: I make triple the amount I will need to fill the feeder and keep the left oversupply in the fridge to use when needed -- it will keep for 2-3 weeks!

Does this sound easy?

Does it sound like starting and upkeeping a feeder is easy?

See results

One of Our Feeders in Action!

This little hummer was a regular visitor at our feeder by the garage all summer.

Some Interesting Hummingbird facts

  1. Hummingbirds can only scoot sideways when perched - they cannot walk or hop. Hummingbirds spend most of their life perching.
  2. Hummingbirds need to eat at least one half their weight in sugar every single day. The average hummingbird feeds 5-8 times per hour.
  3. Hummingbirds do not suck nectar through their long bills, they lick it with fringed, forked tongues at the rate of 10-15 times per second while feeding. Their tongue is grooved like the shape of a "W".
  4. Hummingbirds are one of the most aggressive bird species. They regularly attack jays, crows and hawks that enter their territory.
  5. Different hummingbird species can breed together to create hybrid species, something that makes identifying hummingbirds very challenging.
  6. Hummingbirds can live 10 or more years in the wild.
  7. Hummingbirds can hear and see better than humans.
  8. Hummingbirds are can remember every flower they have been to, and how long it will take a flower to refill.

Hummingbirds have Long Tongues to Feed With

hummingbird tongue
hummingbird tongue

photo by cbede @ Flickr

A Sample of Available Feeders - Hummingbird Feeders

Just a few of the types of feeders available.

Perky-Pet Pinch-Waist Glass Hummingbird Feeder 203CP (8oz)
Perky-Pet Pinch-Waist Glass Hummingbird Feeder 203CP (8oz)

This model is perfect for the beginner -- very inexpensive and just what the hummingbirds are looking for!

 

Hummingbird Mixture Pre-Made - (if you prefer to purchase it!)

Hummingbirds are Attracted to Flowers

Great Way to Invite One to Your Yard

Plant colorful flowers and the hummingbirds will come to you. They love the bright flowers in your garden and if you watch closely you will see a wonderful show.

www.ColleenLane.com

Have You Got a Special Way to Attract These Little Birds? - Love to Hear About It!

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    • MartieG profile image
      Author

      MartieG aka 'survivoryea' 3 years ago from Jersey Shore

      They are amazing little birds! Thanks for visiting : )

    • Adventuretravels profile image

      Giovanna Sanguinetti 3 years ago from Perth UK

      Wow I didn't know any of this about hummingbirds. Not sure that I've ever even seen one in the wild.

    • MartieG profile image
      Author

      MartieG aka 'survivoryea' 3 years ago from Jersey Shore

      Male hummingbirds can be very territorial at feeders, females are the same about their nests. I have several different feeders to attract the females and the lone males.

    • SandyMertens profile image

      Sandy Mertens 3 years ago from Frozen Tundra

      Our daughter bought us a hummingbird feeder last summer. Not sure why but only one did a hummingbird go to it.

    • MartieG profile image
      Author

      MartieG aka 'survivoryea' 3 years ago from Jersey Shore

      We get so much pleasure out of watching the hummingbirds and I agree, they are fascinating! : )

    • Jemjoseph profile image

      Jemjoseph 3 years ago

      The only way I knew of to attract humming birds is by planting hibiscus, of all the flowers in my mom's garden that was the one plant they always seemed to love. It's good to Lear that there are other techniques to attract them, they are such fascinating little birds, I love them.

    • tonybonura profile image

      Tony Bonura 5 years ago from Tickfaw, Louisiana

      Nothing special, but isn't the red dye harmful to them. I'd advise leaving that out altogether.

      TonyB

    • EMangl profile image

      EMangl 5 years ago

      great tips - but i'm afraid none will work since there are no hummingbirds here in austria :-)

    • profile image

      cassieann 5 years ago

      I do have hummingbirds flying amongst my flowers but now would actually love to feed them too.

    • indigoj profile image

      Indigo Janson 5 years ago from UK

      I'd love to see a hummingbird. I've never actually seen one in the wild and think you are so luck to have them right there in your backyard!

    • aesta1 profile image

      Mary Norton 5 years ago from Ontario, Canada

      I have not started my feeder yet. This is late now but I hope I will be able to next summer. They are a joy to watch.

    • profile image

      pawpaw911 5 years ago

      We have been feeding hummingbirds for years. They like our Rose of Sharon flowers too.

    • vegetablegardenh profile image

      vegetablegardenh 5 years ago

      Wonderful lens! I love hummingbirds, saw one just the other day in our apple tree.

    • profile image

      dream1983 6 years ago

      Great lens, nicely done! Thumbs up

    • TaraWojt profile image

      Tara Wojtaszek 6 years ago

      I love hummingbirds but don't see them often enough. I will have to try setting up a feeder.

    • profile image

      JoshK47 6 years ago

      Great info on bringing these adorable little fellas to your yard! Blessed by a SquidAngel!

    • sarasentor lm profile image

      sarasentor lm 6 years ago

      So amazing!

    • sarasentor lm profile image

      sarasentor lm 6 years ago

      Your lens is awesome.

    • profile image

      KarenCookieJar 6 years ago

      I like my cat to have birds to look at out the window, the neighbor has a birdbath and feeder and it seems to work well.

    • profile image

      seemarahate 6 years ago

      Thank you so much for the great post on this article.I have been searching around for some good articles to improve my skills i am very satisfied with this article

    • profile image

      cmadden 6 years ago

      That little broad-tailed hummer was incognito - guess it was to avoid the birder paparazzi!

    • Board-Game-Brooke profile image

      C A Chancellor 6 years ago from US/TN

      Hummingbirds are fun to watch. My aunts have feeders -- in fact, we just got my Aunt Pat the antique glass bottle feeder you've listed. I was very impressed by how pretty it is! And she said it's very functional -- the base comes apart for easy cleaning. :-)

    • psiloveyou1 profile image

      psiloveyou1 6 years ago

      Great lens. I have 2 feeders out, but I haven't seen any hummers yet. As soon as my bee balm blooms, they should come. Just a few more weeks!

    • bwet profile image

      bwet 6 years ago

      Beautiful lens you got there. never knew so much about hummingbirds until I came across your lens from the front page. Kudos for making it to the front!

    • Gypzeerose profile image

      Rose Jones 6 years ago

      I would love to attract hummingbirds. You are making it all sound so easy. Yesterday at the garden center a hummingbird fluttered in around a man, and he had no idea. Made me think of those colonists. Great lens - angel blessed.

    • ItayaLightbourne profile image

      Itaya Lightbourne 6 years ago from Topeka, KS

      Awww...they're so cute! They have buzzed by my ear many times while I've been out working in my flower gardens. :)

    • Lenskeeper profile image

      Lenskeeper 6 years ago

      I love watching hummingbirds. Thanks for the lens. I've always just used sugar and water.

    • BLemley profile image

      Beverly Lemley 6 years ago from Raleigh, NC

      There's just something about a hummingbird! Great story about the Broad-tail mistakenly identifed in New Jersey! Wow! B : )

    • profile image

      anonymous 6 years ago

      Oops, and one more thing I forgot to mention. Your 4 parts water to 1 part sugar is what was recommended very strongly in an article I read some while ago. That mix is close to what they get in nature and more sugar is NOT a good idea because they were saying it can make egg shells thinner and bones brittle. Also, the hummers may spend too much time at feeders with more sugar and they need whatever nutrients they get from flowers and the insects they also eat. Over and out!

    • profile image

      anonymous 6 years ago

      Oh, she also has the green antique bottle perk pet design that the hummers seems to like pretty much as well and that one seals pretty tight to prevent ants from getting in. It is a little more special and unique, a pretty green that looks like a fancy old coke bottle.

    • profile image

      anonymous 6 years ago

      Returning to congratulate you on front page honors, I didn't notice in January that the feeder in the intro picture is one my sister has at her place, actually several as they seem to prefer this design for some reason. It was fun watching as one hummer would land on the opposite side of the feeder from one already there and the first one would edged sideways along the perching wire to see who was there and then chase them off...its the hummingbird games!

    • LoriBeninger profile image

      LoriBeninger 6 years ago

      This is fantastic. After he "retired" my dad used to sit for hours watching the hummingbirds flit about his yard. He had books (probably some of those you've highlighted) and learned the names of each one. Beautiful lens. Thank you.

    • LoriBeninger profile image

      LoriBeninger 6 years ago

      This is fantastic. After he "retired" my dad used to sit for hours watching the hummingbirds flit about his yard. He had books (probably some of those you've highlighted) and learned the names of each one. Beautiful lens. Thank you.

    • dc64 lm profile image

      dc64 lm 6 years ago

      I get a few hummingbirds that are attracted by the wildflowers that spring up on the outskirts of my yard, but it would be nice to attract a few more. Your lens makes it look so easy.

    • Teapixie LM profile image

      Tea Pixie 6 years ago

      Spectacular work here. I love all of the information you have provided.

    • rachelscott profile image

      rachelscott 6 years ago

      This lens deserve THUMB UP!

    • ceejaycmarshall profile image

      ceejaycmarshall 6 years ago

      we have feeders in the play yard for the preschoolers, they love to watch the hummingbirds! and learn so much from them, as well. great lens :] i hope you inspire some more people to feed our adorable friends!

    • hughgrissettsr lm profile image

      hughgrissettsr lm 6 years ago

      love those birds!

    • livinglargeandh profile image

      livinglargeandh 6 years ago

      Flowers, lots of feeders, lots of red things on the porch.

    • domjohnson lm profile image

      domjohnson lm 6 years ago

      My uncle bought a feed years ago and it's just been sitting in his shed ever since! I wish he'd get it set up!

    • profile image

      anonymous 6 years ago

      I am yet to see a hummingbird in my small garden, I love the birds, without them there is no garden.

    • Scotties-Rock profile image

      Clairissa 6 years ago from OREFIELD, PA

      I love hummers and have only had one spotting so far, but look forward to many more this summer. :)

    • profile image

      jmatts1 6 years ago

      Nice lens. I've bought a feeder and now I just need to set it up.

    • Rosaquid profile image

      Rosaquid 6 years ago

      We have five feeders up and they still fight over them! By the end of summer they are so bold and comfortable around us. I adore them.

    • CarmellaMaeDunkin profile image

      CarmellaMaeDunkin 6 years ago

      We live in the rocky mountains and one would think that little hummers would not be so abundant up here, but they are! We attract up to 30 each year, all we do is place feeders everywhere and replace them when the bear destroys them, LOL I have noticed that they will follow me wherever I go if I have red anywhere on me! I just LOVE these awesome little birds and being a photographer, they make for some AWESOME photographs!

    • profile image

      genuineaid lm 6 years ago

      I never did anything to attract these birds, but they do fascinate me every time I see them :)

    • profile image

      anonymous 6 years ago

      just plain old sugar water

    • AmrElsawy profile image

      AmrElsawy 6 years ago

      Hello dear friends, i am new here and i need squidoo likes ... can you help me :) my lense is: www.squidoo.com/infographics4journalism

    • Linda Pogue profile image

      Linda Pogue 6 years ago from Missouri

      The flowering bushes in my yard attract them.

    • Anthony Altorenna profile image

      Anthony Altorenna 6 years ago from Connecticut

      I saw the first hummingbird of the spring over this past weekend, and used this hummingbird nectar recipe to fill up the feeder.

    • mariaamoroso profile image

      irenemaria 6 years ago from Sweden

      We have no humming birds in Sweden! Buhuu

    • wcjohnston profile image

      wcjohnston 6 years ago

      they are not so easy to attract when you live in the UK ;-)

    • gatornic15 profile image

      gatornic15 6 years ago

      I would love to have hummingbirds in my backyard rather than the pesky pigeons I have now. I may give this a try.

    • profile image

      anonymous 6 years ago

      My parents had a hummingbird feeder in their backyard that was identical to the red one with yellow flowers in your photo. That feeder was great at attracting hummingbirds.

    • Einar A profile image

      Einar A 6 years ago

      I love watching hummingbirds, and enjoyed your article! It's difficult for me to put out feeders where I live because the bears tend to go to great lengths to get at them, but still enjoy seeing hummingbirds take nectar from the flowers.

    • ninakreativa profile image

      ninakreativa 6 years ago

      Wow, such an amazing lens about the Hummingbirds. I didn't know about all these facts and was especially surprised about how aggressive they are...who would have thought about that! It's also interesting to know that they suck nectar with their tongues :)

    • Winter52 LM profile image

      Winter52 LM 6 years ago

      I'm ready to attract some of these sweet little birds this summer. I learned a lot!

    • profile image

      SteveKaye 6 years ago

      Planting flowers works, which you mentioned.

    • profile image

      anonymous 6 years ago

      Humming birds are very attractive indeed.

    • Diana Wenzel profile image

      Renaissance Woman 6 years ago from Colorado

      Great action shots. Your video makes me yearn even more for the return of my hummers. I believe my first one arrived last year on Good Friday. I had so many hummers last summer that I went through gallons and gallons of nectar every week. I could barely keep six large feeders full every day (with refills more than once per day). Time to stock up on sugar! Thank you for featuring my hummingbird lens here. Really appreciated!

    • FunNaturePhotog profile image

      FunNaturePhotog 6 years ago

      Informative lens! Thanks for adding a link to one of my articles. Have you heard of this device you can wear on your head that's like a regular hummingbird feeder so that they're right up close and personal when they feed? It's crazy!

    • KokoTravel profile image

      KokoTravel 6 years ago

      We have many different flowers in our yard that attract the hummingbirds, but they also like our creek in which they bath and drink from. The creek is just to the right of our front veranda, and in clear view from our dining room window, so we have a marvelous show without disturbing them.

    • profile image

      anonymous 6 years ago

      My favorite birds. Thanks for sharing. (brought to you by sniffgag)

    • TTMall profile image

      TTMall 6 years ago

      Wonderful and informative lens. Very well done!

    • ajgodinho profile image

      Anthony Godinho 6 years ago from Ontario, Canada

      Humming birds are beautiful and it's great to see that you've been able to consistently attract them to your backyard. I enjoyed learning some facts about these fascinating birds too. Thanks for sharing this with us. Blessings! :)

    • profile image

      anonymous 6 years ago

      I do so envy my American friends who can get humming birds in their gardens!

    • RCGraphicsDesign profile image

      RCGraphicsDesign 6 years ago

      I used to sit quitely by my hummingbird feeder in a beach chair and place red hibiscus flowers on my shirt. They would fly to the flowers to feed. It was very exciting. Thanks for a wonderful lens.

    • Brandi Bush profile image

      Brandi 6 years ago from Maryland

      Great lens! I enjoy hummingbirds and I really hope they come to my yard this year. :) Thanks for visiting my About MamaBush lens. Glad you enjoyed it! ;)

    • earthybirthymum profile image

      earthybirthymum 6 years ago from Ontario, Canada

      I've always wanted a hummingbird feeder, you've inspired me.

      Cheers

      Grace

    • MartieG profile image
      Author

      MartieG aka 'survivoryea' 6 years ago from Jersey Shore

      @anonymous: Thank you Tipi :>)

    • FanfrelucheHubs profile image

      Nathalie Roy 6 years ago from France (Canadian expat)

      I love hummingbirds, and when I will move out of town I will do my best to attract lots of nice birds in my garden!

    • Scarlettohairy profile image

      Peggy Hazelwood 6 years ago from Desert Southwest, U.S.A.

      Great directions for fixing up a humdinger of a hummingbird dinner!

    • Commandrix profile image

      Heidi 6 years ago from Benson, IL

      Neat -- I've seen a couple of hummingbirds around my place and we probably should put out a bird feeder for them.

    • profile image

      anonymous 6 years ago

      Sounds like a very intelligent bird. Thanks for the factoids. They make for a very interesting read!

    • profile image

      nikyweber 6 years ago

      great lens!

    • profile image

      anonymous 6 years ago

      Very good information on taking care of hummingbirds, I can spend hours watching them and they seem to not mind going around people to get from feeder to feeder as we watch...blessed!

    • profile image

      myamya 6 years ago

      Interesting lens thumbs up!

    • davies86 profile image

      davies86 6 years ago

      nice lens. Thanks for sharing

    • MartieG profile image
      Author

      MartieG aka 'survivoryea' 6 years ago from Jersey Shore

      @kathysart: Thank you for the blessing Kathysart!

    • kathysart profile image

      kathysart 6 years ago

      I've just got to get a hummingbird feeder now.. such a nice lens. Angel blessed.

    • WriterJanis2 profile image

      WriterJanis2 6 years ago

      We have a hummingbird feeder and love to watch as they stop by.

    • TonyPayne profile image

      Tony Payne 6 years ago from Southampton, UK

      I love hummingbirds, used to occasionally see them in Indiana and Florida when I lived there, but not too often. They are so cute to watch. We don't get them in the UK of course.

    • TreasuresBrenda profile image

      Treasures By Brenda 6 years ago from Canada

      We love it when a hummingbird stops by!

    • JoleneBelmain profile image

      JoleneBelmain 6 years ago

      I have a hummingbird feeder in my yard during the summers.... I don't get a whole lot of hummingbirds, but the few I get are just gorgeous :)

    • Sylvestermouse profile image

      Cynthia Sylvestermouse 6 years ago from United States

      Since I love hummingbirds, I love the hummingbird feeders, however I have never made my own hummingbird food. Thanks for the recipe :) Beautiful pictures!

    • sukkran trichy profile image

      sukkran trichy 6 years ago from Trichy/Tamil Nadu

      always love to watch these little beauties in action. thanks for sharing this wonderful page.

    • profile image

      anonymous 6 years ago

      enjoyed my visit on your lens tonight, thank you for it!

    • ClassyGals profile image

      Cynthia Davis 6 years ago from Pittsburgh

      My cat loves watching hummingbirds, so do I. Thumbs up.

    • Diane Cass profile image

      Diane Cass 6 years ago from New York

      Neat! We have a pair of hummingbirds that visit our yard every summer. Bryan keeps the feeder filled with fresh nectar that he makes himself every week. We also grow lots of flowering plants that the hummers like. Great lens! Loved the video.

    • Virginia Allain profile image

      Virginia Allain 6 years ago from Central Florida

      There's something so amazing about watching hummingbirds. I don't even try to photograph them. They move too fast for me.

    • profile image

      julieannbrady 6 years ago

      I really enjoy the hummingbird visits ... must put me out a feeder!

    • Close2Art LM profile image

      Close2Art LM 6 years ago

      great page and lovet the images!!!

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