When we first built our home in east Tennessee back in 2007, I discovered that we had the most hummingbirds. It's hard to count how many but it was a couple of dozen at least. We have a large front porch in which I hang four humming bird feeders on. I love to sit in the swing and watch the little birds quarrel with each other. If I wear a bright pink or red clothing, I get some close encounters with these fabulous little birds, feeling the wind off their wings.
The only hummingbird I have seen here is the Ruby Throat. Of course I have to research, to see what amazing facts I can find about this beautiful bird. These facts are brought to you by AllAboutBirds.org. and Hummingbirds.net
- Length: 2.8–3.5 in. Weight: 0.1–0.2 oz
- The Ruby-throated Hummingbird beats its wings about 53 times a second.
- The Ruby-throated Hummingbird does not show a strong preference for any particular color of feeder. Instead, it prefers specific feeder locations.
- Ruby-throated Hummingbirds prefer to feed on red or orange flowers. Like many birds, they have good color vision and can see into the ultraviolet spectrum, which humans can’t see.
- Most Ruby-throated Hummingbirds winter between southern Mexico and northern Panama.
- Ruby-throats begin moving north as early as January, and by the end of February they are at the northern coast of Yucatan, gorging on insects and spiders to add a thick layer of fat in preparation for flying to the U.S. Some will skirt the Gulf of Mexico and follow the Texas coast north, while most apparently cross the Gulf, typically leaving at dusk for a nonstop flight of up to 500 miles, which takes 18-22 hours depending on the weather. Before departing, each bird will have nearly doubled its weight, from about 3.25 grams to over 6 grams; when it reaches the U.S. Gulf coast, it may weigh only 2.5 grams.
- Ruby-throats aren't well adapted to cold temperatures; they have a tough time below the mid-20s (F). Some adult males start migrating south as early as mid-July, but the peak of southward migration for this species is late August and early September. By mid-September, essentially all of the Ruby-throated at feeders are migrating through from farther north, and not the same individuals seen in the summer.
These birds are amazing in their ability of strength and speed. With these facts in mind lets ponder about what their nutrition requirements would be...
I have decided not to feed the hummingbirds that come to my feeders plain sugar water. Why? Because plain sugar water does not have the nutritional composits of nectar. Nectar is mostly sugar and water, it has been small amounts of protein and minerals. I know hummingbirds eat insects too, but any help I can give is a bonus in my eyes. With this in mind, I wanted to share with you my favorite hummingbird feed.
Not only is this hummingbird food a great price, but it makes a lot of food. Other benefits are:
- No boiling, mixes with cool water
- No premixing
- Makes 240 oz.
- Resealable bag
- Dissolves instantly
- Choose your choice of red or clear mix
- Super easy!
All you need is a feeder, measuring cup, teaspoon, spoon, and water.