Incidents and accidents

Hummingbird things

March 15th, 2006

I like:

Aspects Feeders: They don’t break, they don’t drip, they’re easy as pie to clean. They can either be hung or post mounted. These things are so durable they come with a Lifetime Guarantee! The only thing you have to worry about with one of these babies is a hungry bear!

Test tube feeders: Great small feeders just right for brightening up a window or hook. Most come with perches, and the test tubes are easy to replace if broken. These things would be hell to fill without a turkey baster though.

Artline flower feeders Sold in bulk in sets of 12 (or three for more money), these feeders hold only 2oz of nectar. Hell to fill without a turkey baster and no perches should have made my ‘bad’ list, but these things are so cheerful and easy to use that I love them. They just stick into the ground. They ball filled with nectar pops off the holder, and the flower top pops off the ball. So simple, and too cute to pass up.

A Field Guide to Hummingbirds of North America: This is one of the best book ever written about hummingbirds. Not only does it feature maps and bird behaivior bits, but it’s packed with close-up photos of each species! This is also a great travel book to take if you’re visiting hummingbird places.

Attracting and Feeding Hummingbirds: A nice all around book for beginers and advanced hummer watchers.

Hummingbirds: My Tiny Treasures: A cute first-hand account of what it’s like to have hummingbirds in your house.

I don’t like:

Best 1 feeders: They have a distressing tendency to trap and kill hummingbirds. The ports are vertical, a very unnatural position for hovering birds. They can get thier bills stuck in the port, then become trapped in the perch base. See a photo and a critical modification here.

Opus 440 feeder: Whoever designed this one seems to have forgotten that when liquid goes out, air must come in, or the rest of the liquid cannot go out. The bottleneck design doesn’t allow any airflow in, unless the feeder is tipped on it’s side, leaving the poor hummers to starve until I go outside and ‘burp’ the feeder, allowing more nectar into the base. Yellow flowers also attract bees and wasps.

Instant nectar: Don’t buy this crap. It’s a waste of money and many include red dye in the mix which could be dangerous to hummingbirds. Mix your own. Use 1 part sugar to 4 parts water. Much better. Much.

Stokes Hummingbird Book : The Complete Guide to Attracting, Identifying, and Enjoying Hummingbirds: Not a very informative book. They barely touch on different species or gardening. All of the information in this book can be found for free on the web.

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