Hummingbirds are superb to observe as they buzz from flower to flower collecting nectar or to your feeder collecting sugar water. There are about 20 species of hummingbirds in the North American continent, the most common in the United States being the ruby-throated, black-chinned and the broad-tailed hummingbirds. All male hummingbirds have an iridescent color patch on the throat. A great way to attract them is to put up a feeder around your house, porch, balcony or yard.
Probably the most important feature you want to look for in a hummingbird feeder is ease of cleaning and maintenance. When looking at the variety of feeders, check which ones have the fewest parts, how they come apart and how easily they are assembled and disassembled. There are inverted type feeders and there are basin type feeders and the basins may be a bit easier to clean.
Hummingbirds use a lot of calories to maintain their lifestyle and appreciate the occasional perch. Resting for just a quick second or two lets the birds conserve a bit of energy as they refuel at the feeder. They don't stop long, but it can be amazing to see them stop for just an instant and observe their beauty. Many hummingbird feeders do not have perches but a few do and these are nice for the birds to have. They won't use them all the time, but if you find a feeder like this it's a good feature.
Style is important to you and you alone. There are many designs and sizes of these feeders, but all the birds really care about is the sugar water inside. Most hummingbird feeders are made of plastic but some are made of ceramic or glass. Plastic is preferable just in case it crashes down in a violent storm. You will notice that all feeders have little flower-shaped feeding holes so the birds know where to go. These could be a variety of colors but many are red or yellow. Red is a popular color for hummingbird feeders anyway since this is a color they are naturally attracted to (many of the flowers they get nectar from are red so they associate food with this color) but they will feed from any color once they know there is good nectar there.
Article Written By Naomi Judd
Naomi M. Judd is a naturalist, artist and writer. Her work has been published in various literary journals, newspapers and websites. Judd holds a self-designed Bachelor of Arts in adventure writing from Plymouth State University and is earning a Master of Fine Arts in creative writing from the University of Southern Maine.