Watching hummingbirds as they feed outside your window is such a joy. They seem to suspend magically in the air and zip around so quickly that it’s really a treat when they are still enough to enjoy the nectar you put out for them. Most store-bought hummingbird nectar is just sugar and red dye. The red dye is used to attract the hummingbirds. This isn’t necessary because once the birds find the feeder, they will be back for more.
Homemade Bird Nectar
The most common ingredient used in hummingbird food and the most often suggested is actually plain white sugar. Use 1 cup of sugar instead of corn syrup and follow the same instructions above. Corn syrup does not offer as much nutritional value as sugar but will not hurt them.
Bird expert Bill Thompson, author of Bird Watching For Dummies, suggests tying a red ribbon around the feeder to catch the birds' attention.
Honey should be avoided. Honey can lead to a fungal infection in hummingbirds that could be fatal. Again, white sugar is your best bet.
Measure 4 cups of water and 1 cup of corn syrup.
Bring the water to a boil.
Slowly stir in the cup of corn syrup until in completely dissolves.
Allow mixture to cool completely.
Pour mixture into a feeder and hang. Store unused portion in the refrigerator.
- hummingbird caught at the feeder image by David Grebow from Fotolia.com