About us: We own the Wild Birds Unlimited nature shop in East Lansing, Michigan,
a store that provides a wide variety of supplies to help you enjoy the birdwatching hobby.

This blog was created to answer frequently asked questions & to share nature stories and photographs.
To contribute, email me at bloubird@gmail.com.

Wednesday, August 1, 2018

Late summer hummingbirds

It’s not too late to begin feeding hummingbirds. I wait all year for my summertime hummingbird viewing. Males, footloose and fancy free all summer, are seriously bulking up in preparation to head south. Females, finally off the nest, are roaming freely too. And baby hummers, checking everything and learning where the good food is to be found, are locking feeder locations away in their brain. Make sure your feeders are clean and refilled with fresh nectar every couple of days.

From July to late fall, territorial claims can be overlooked, and competition at feeders increases greatly. Hummers forage for food 20% of their time and perch about 80% of their life. In order to conserve their strength, sometimes they’ll guard a particularly tasty food source like a hummingbird feeder or flowering bush. This might result in air fights between hummingbirds or any birds that get in the way of their meal. It's also not unusual for more mature hummingbirds to use physical rebukes to punish immature hummingbirds. It is okay to put up a couple feeders at different locations of the yard to relieve the stresses of late summer feeding.
A hummingbird actually gains 25 – 40% extra body-weight to have enough fuel to migrate thousands of miles south. You will notice them getting a fresh set of feathers and fatter and fatter along the belly, back, and throat. The males first get the urge to fly south followed by the females and then the juvenile hummers. Most Ruby-throated Hummingbirds winter in southern Mexico, Central America, South America, and the West Indies. A few remain along the Gulf coast and on the Outer Banks of North Carolina. 

Related Articles:
What is the nectar recipe for hummingbirds? http://goo.gl/MK3AU
Fun Facts about Ruby-throated Hummingbirds http://goo.gl/jcjcr
The Best Hummingbird Feeders http://bit.ly/L4yY3i
Why the color on a hummingbirds’ throat flashes http://bit.ly/JZ31qX
When did people start to feed hummingbirds?: http://bit.ly/o8Y8HR

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