Columbus, Ohio
We can show you how to turn your yard into a birdfeeding habitat that brings song, color and life to your home.

Hummingbirds

Fun Facts About Hummingbirds

  • There are 18 hummingbird species in North America. Hummingbirds are found no where else in the world except the New World (North, Central, and South America.)
  • There are over 325 species of hummingbirds, making them the second largest bird family in the world, second only to flycatchers.
  • Hummingbirds weigh 1/10th of an ounce; about the weight of a penny.
  • Hummingbirds’ brains are about the size of a BB.
  • Hummingbirds’ hearts are larger proportionally to their body than any other bird or mammal.
  • Hummingbirds have such underdeveloped legs that they are unable to walk well.
  • A mother hummingbird weighs only about eight times more than her egg.
  • Hummingbirds lay the world’s smallest bird egg.
  • Hummingbirds generally lay two eggs, each about the size of a blueberry.
  • Hummingbirds learn to associate flower colors, like red, with food. They do not have an innate preference for red.
  • They drink nectar from plants and sugar water from feeders.
  • Hummingbirds lap up nectar with their long tongues. There is a groove on either side of the tongue that creates a capillary action to help draw the nectar up the tongue and into the mouth during the lapping action.
  • While lapping up nectar, Hummingbirds can move their tongues in and out of their bill at a rate of up to 12 times a second.

 

HummingbirdIt's a Sweet Month to Feed the Birds

Spring migration is underway, and a countless number of birds are heading north to their nesting territories.

Fortunately, two of the hobby's favorite birds, hummingbirds and orioles, can be immediately attracted to feeders with nectar (and fruit and jelly for orioles), making it a sweet month to feed the birds.

Only 5% of all avian families include nectar as an important part of their diet, making hummingbirds and orioles part of a very exclusive dining club.

It only takes between 30 to 50 minutes for nectar to be digested, so hummingbirds must eat a lot and often. In fact, hummingbirds eat about every ten minutes and can drink up to twice their body weight in nectar every day.

However, no bird's diet is made up entirely of nectar. Nectar-eaters must also include other foods, usually insects, to obtain essential amino acids and other nutrients.

When orioles are not feeding on nectar or fruit, they forage for spiders, caterpillars and other insects. Hummingbirds spend more than 25% of their time foraging for arthropods, such as spiders.

You can attract hummingbirds and orioles to your feeders using slightly varying methods. Hummingbirds enjoy a nectar solution of four parts water to one part sugar. Orioles enjoy nectar, fresh orange slices, grape jelly and mealworms.

Watch Northern Migrations Online

Visit www.learner.org/jnorth/humm to monitor the northward migration of hummingbirds and www.learner.org/jnorth/oriole for an oriole migration map.

Nectar...the Recipe for Perfectly Fun Feeding

Hummingbirds

These tiny birds use so much energy flying that they can eat double their weight in nectar and insects each day.

Despite popular belief, hummingbirds do not suck up nectar with their bills. They actually lap it up with their tongues. While dipping their grooved tongues into nectar sources at up to 12 times a second, the nectar is drawn up and into their mouth each and every time.

You can help them keep their energy level up and attract them to your yard by offering them a nectar solution. Mix four parts water and one part ordinary table sugar to create the perfect nectar solution. Example: (4 cups of water, 1 cup of sugar)

Change the nectar and wash your feeder in hot water every three to four days (more often in hot weather). If you have a WBU Hummingbird Feeder, simply place it in the top rack of your dishwasher for easy cleaning.

If you plan to store nectar in the refrigerator, boil the water first before creating and storing your nectar solution.

Never add red food coloring, honey or artificial sweeteners to the solution.

These birds are quite bold, too, so place your feeder close to the house so you can catch all the action!

Orioles

Orioles are known to enjoy orange slices, grape jelly and mealworms offered from tray-style feeders. They will even use the protein-rich mealworms to feed their nestlings. Nectar feeders are also attractive to orioles, supplementing the natural nectar they typically find in flowers. Be patient and keep the foods fresh, replacing them every few days and be sure to keep your feeders clean, too.

Orioles - The Sweet Life

One of North America’s most popular fruit-eating birds is the oriole and we can help you attract them to your yard if they are in your area.

Orioles are known to enjoy orange slices, grape jelly and mealworms offered from tray-style feeders. Nectar feeders can also be used. Be patient and keep the foods fresh, replacing them every few days and be sure to keep your feeders clean, too.

 

How to Attract Hummingbirds