Hummingbird feeders have red nectar

zzackey(8b GA)July 27, 2014

Snickerkitten, your thread maxed out. I don't know why all the commercial nectar are red. I make my own nectar. One cup of water with 1/3 cup of white sugar. Heat up the water enough to melt the sugar. Let it cool down and add to your feeder. I've been doing this for years and they don't seem to need the red dye in it. As long as your feeder has red parts they will come.

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ctnchpr

The last question on the old thread was "why are all the nectars sold red?" The answer is simple: MONEY!! The pushers fool people into thinking the commercial nectar has something the hummers need. It's why caramel coloring is added to Cokes - who would buy clear, flavored sugar water?

    Bookmark   July 27, 2014 at 1:44PM
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zzackey(8b GA)

I agree! I worked retail for years. The consumers are easily fooled.

    Bookmark   July 27, 2014 at 3:29PM
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ediej1209(5 N Central OH)

We make our own, also (the price of premade is obscene IMHO), but the formula I was taught was 1 cup sugar to 4 cups water. That would translate to 1/4 cup sugar for every cup of water. Am I not making it sweet enough? They seem to drink it pretty readily.
Thanks,
Edie

    Bookmark   July 28, 2014 at 9:51AM
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ctnchpr

Hi ediej,

Any mix in the 1:3 to 1:4 ratio is fine. I use the 1:3 in the Spring to help them recover from migration, and in the Fall when they're storing up fat for migration. I use the 1:4 in the heat of Summer when they may need the extra water.

    Bookmark   July 28, 2014 at 10:48AM
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ediej1209(5 N Central OH)

OK, thanks - I will "up" the sugar ratio in a couple of weeks, then, as it is getting close to that time (we normally take down feeders right after Labor Day to encourage them to start making the trip.)
Edie

    Bookmark   July 28, 2014 at 11:49AM
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zzackey(8b GA)

I laid in bed last night and wondered if I had said 1/3 or 1/4. I meant to say 1/4. Sorry!

    Bookmark   July 28, 2014 at 11:52AM
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ctnchpr

Edie, Please don't take your feeders down until you haven't seen any hummers for 2-3 weeks. The migrators will be passing thru, and will need the food. Leaving a feeder up won't cause them to delay their migration.

    Bookmark   July 28, 2014 at 2:05PM
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gardengal48

As long as your feeder has red parts they will come.

Actually, the color doesn't really matter. Hummers are attracted by the nectar content, not the color, so even a green, blue or brown (or even a clear glass) feeder will work equally as well. Like many myths, the attraction of the color red is a causal assumption - hummingbirds are only attracted to red because many red colored flowers have a heavy nectar content. They are also attracted to any other colored flower that has a similar nectar content - pink, white, blue, yellow.

    Bookmark   July 30, 2014 at 5:42PM
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