It’s that time of year again, when the daylight hours start to dwindle, and the southern migrations begin. Most notably, the hummingbird migration, because if you’ve been feeding the little sprites through summer… there’s no way you can miss the frenzy around feeders!
Activity around hummingbird feeders is just mad! Almost in a frantic, and desperate attempt to guard their spots, hummingbirds are buzzing like crazy, and drinking down nectar from big feeders in a matter of one to two days.
They know it’s critical to fatten up for the long journey back to Central and South America, just imagine how much fuel that takes? And summer weather has not been kind to them…or any other wildlife for that matter 🙁
The brutal temps and severe drought killed off most of the flowers and shrubs that provide nectar. This makes the trip for hummingbirds up North a bit more difficult. They’ll search for activity (other hummingbirds at feeders) as they make their way through the southern states.
Consider adding another feeder, or even two, that will increase the likelihood of more successful flights home. And if you think your hummingbirds are gone, please wait for the slow-pokes and stragglers! Some folks keep feeders out year-round, as strange sitings have revealed the migratory bird in northern states during frigid winter months.
Nectar solutions may also be increased this time of year to benefit hummingbirds. The usual ratio of 4:1 is perfect during lazy summer months, but these guys mean business now! Increase the ratio to a 3:1 solution for added calories. Three cups of water to one cup plain table sugar. If you feed commercial nectar mixes, just use about 25% less water for an added punch.
If hummingbirds graced your yard this year, chances are they’ll be back next year. Practicing “site fidelity” is another really cool thing about these fascinating birds. And hey, even if it’s just one of those little plastic inexpensive hummingbird feeders (that doesn’t much appeal to you) they will absolutely appreciate and love it right now!