Hummingbird Feeder Recipe

This recipe was first invented in 1899 by Carolin Soule of Massachusetts. She hung up a bottle of sugar-water with an imitation trumpet creeper flower inserted in the opening. Soon she had so many hummingbirds coming for a drink that she had to fill the bottle up twice a day.

Little new, since then has been added to the art of hummingbird feeding.

Hummingbird feeder recipe:

  • 1 part sugar
  • 4 parts water

First, bring the water to a boil and then slowly add the sugar. Let it boil for a few minutes, then remove from the burner to cool. Store any excess nectar in the refrigerator. Yes, it is that easy!

Wait! We've Found A New Improved Recipe!

One of our readers takes the original recipe and improves it!

Use this hummingbird feeder recipe to make your own hummer nectar; it is easy and inexpensive. It is not necessary to purchase commercially produced nectar that has vitamins and minerals added to them. Hummers get all the vitamins and minerals that they need from insects and natural nectar. A simple sugar solution is adequate to supplement their dietary needs.

PLEASE! No Red Food Coloring!

No testing has been done to ensure that red dye is not harmful to hummingbirds. Red dyes used are approved for human consumption, but the body weight of a hummingbird is a wee bit less than that of a human!

As pointed out in Birdwatchers Digest;

"A hummingbird regularly taking artificially dyed nectar may be ingesting the dye in concentrations that far exceed those recommended for humans."

Make sure your hummingbird feeders have red parts on them to attract the hummers. Therefore the dye is unnecessary.

Once you get hummers coming, check your feeders often. Hummingbirds seldom approach a depleted feeder. In some mysterious way, they seem to know precisely when refills have been added.

The more hummingbird feeders the merrier! One reader told of attracting over 200 hummers to his yard. His large garden with feeders resembled a colorful parade, with an air show in progress.

If you spend a lot of time outdoors and can remain absolutely motionless, hummers that are accustomed to your presence will feed from a dispenser you hold in your hand. But that only comes as a reward for much patience.

Favorite Hummingbird Feeders


If you're looking for more hummingbird information check out these links:

Hummingbirds can fly an average of 30 miles per hour, flap their wings around 3000 times per minute and their heart can beat up to 1,200 times per second. Because of their metabolism, hummers must eat between one and three times their body weight each day!

Hummingbirds have two food sources, insects (spiders and tiny flying insects) and nectar. In order to gather enough nectar, hummingbirds must visit hundreds of flowers every day. One way you can help make their search for food easier is to put out "nectar" in the form of sugar water.

Start a New Family Tradition

See who can spot the first Ruby-throated hummingbird each spring.

Banding studies have shown that hummingbirds will return year after year to the same hummingbird feeders

Just imagine if they could tell you of their hummingbird migration journey. Provide them with a little "nectar" and they will provide you with a lifetime of memories. Hummingbirds cannot smell and depend on their eyesight to seek out flowers and food sources. But do not add food coloring to this hummingbird feeder recipe, it is unnecessary and possibly harmful to the wild birds. Red portals on the feeders, or even a red ribbon on top, will attract the hummingbirds just as well.

If the hummers are not emptying your bird feeders, just partially fill them. Definitely don't use artificial sweeteners in the feeders, they have no nutritional value and may be harmful to the birds. NEVER use honey in hummingbird feeders. It readily grows mold that can be dangerous or even fatal to hummingbirds.

Hummingbirds are territorial and will protect their nectar sources. To increase the number of hummers visiting your yard simply put up more hummingbird feeders.

Using hummingbird feeders to attract hummers will make it easier to watch them as they eat. But if you want to add another aspect to your hummer watching, consider hummingbird flowers to attract them.

If you liked this hummingbird feeder recipe then check this link for more wild bird food recipes.

Take a look at these hummingbird pictures.

Click here for some fun facts about the hummingbird that you might not know.

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