Hummingbirds

A:

Hummingbirds have a diet consisting mainly of tree sap, flower nectar, pollen and insects. Hummingbirds are extremely active and must eat food several times a day. These birds have a long tapered bill that allows for them to extract nectar from the middle of long tubular flowers.

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  • What do hummingbirds eat?

    Q: What do hummingbirds eat?

    A: Hummingbirds eat a combination of nectar from flowers and small flying insects. Nectar is the more widely known and understood hummingbird food. Scientists have noted that the shape of the birds' bills and tongues are highly adapted to reaching deep within the recesses of flowers to retrieve nectar. However, as nectar is poor in everything but calories, hummingbirds make up the nutritional deficit by consuming bugs.
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  • What are key factors to hummingbird identification?

    Q: What are key factors to hummingbird identification?

    A: Key factors to hummingbird identification include appearance, behavior and territory. Aspects of appearance that bird watchers need to keep an eye out for are throat color and markings, eye markings, bill color and curvature, plumage coloration, tail characteristics, and body shape and size.
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  • Can you keep a hummingbird as a pet?

    Q: Can you keep a hummingbird as a pet?

    A: Although it is possible, keeping a hummingbird as a pet is illegal in many areas, including the United States. Because they are wild animals, they do not make good pets.
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  • How long do hummingbirds live?

    Q: How long do hummingbirds live?

    A: The average lifespan for a hummingbird is only about three to four years. While most hummingbirds die in their first year, some have been known to survive for up to ten years or more.
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  • How do hummingbirds reproduce?

    Q: How do hummingbirds reproduce?

    A: Although hummingbirds are usually solitary and fiercely territorial, males seek out females and perform elaborate courtship dances to get the females to accept them. After mating, the male leaves the female to build a nest, incubate the eggs and feed the young.
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  • What kind of food do you put in a hummingbird feeder?

    Q: What kind of food do you put in a hummingbird feeder?

    A: The type of food you put in a hummingbird feeder is called nectar, which can be made at home. Simply add 1/4 cup of sugar per 1 cup of water.
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  • When do hummingbirds migrate?

    Q: When do hummingbirds migrate?

    A: Most hummingbirds in America and Canada spend the winter in Mexico or South America before migrating to their breeding ground in southern U.S. as early as February or the first week of March. Some South American hummingbird species also travel north to the tropics during the southern winter.
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  • How do you make hummingbird food?

    Q: How do you make hummingbird food?

    A: Hummingbird nectar is made by combining four parts water with one part white table sugar, slowly heating the solution for one or two minutes and then allowing it to cool, according to About.com. This mixture provides an accurate replication of natural sucrose from flowers. It is easy to digest, nutritious and provides hummingbirds with necessary energy and calories.
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  • How fast do hummingbirds fly?

    Q: How fast do hummingbirds fly?

    A: Hummingbirds can fly at an average speed of roughly 25 to 30 miles per hour and can dive at speeds of up to 60 miles per hour. These tiny birds can flap their wings approximately 70 times per second during normal flight and around 200 times per second when they are diving.
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  • Q: Do hummingbirds migrate?

    A: Many species of hummingbird migrate, although they do so on an individual basis. For example, ruby-throated hummingbirds typically migrate to southern Mexico or northern Panama during the winter. Before migrating, ruby-throated hummingbirds build up a thick layer of fat to provide fuel for a difficult trans-Gulf flight.
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  • Q: What is the hummingbird food ratio?

    A: Hummingbird feeders should be filled with sugar water mixed at a ratio of one part white sugar to four parts water. This ratio approximates the sugar content of natural flower nectar and provides a good source of calories.
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  • Q: What is a homemade hummingbird feed formula?

    A: A homemade hummingbird feed formula involves mixing four parts water with one part sugar and boiling vigorously. The mixture needs to be brought to the boiling point to eliminate bacteria that may otherwise grow and harm feeding birds. Hummingbird enthusiasts should not add dye to the mixture, as it may contain harmful agents.
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  • Q: What are some facts about the ruby-throated hummingbird?

    A: The ruby-throated hummingbird is 2.8 to 3.5 inches long with a 3.1- to 4.3-inch wingspan at maturity, and females are larger than males. The birds are metallic green in color with grayish-white undersides and black wings. Only males have red throat patches.
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  • Q: How can you make a humming bird feeder?

    A: Cut a hole in the side of an empty plastic bottle approximately 1 inch from the lid, and place a plastic straw in the hole. Make a feeding solution of 1/2 cup of sugar dissolved in 1 cup of hot water plus 1 cup of cold water, and fill the feeder with the mixture. Adjust the straw so it fills with the feeding solution, glue the straw into place, and wrap a wire around the bottle lid to hang it.
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  • Q: How do you make sugar water for hummingbirds?

    A: To make hummingbird nectar, mix four parts water with one part sugar, and bring it to a boil. Let it cool to room temperature, and then fill a clean hummingbird feeder with it. Refrigerate any unused nectar.
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  • What are some easy hummingbird nectar recipes?

    Q: What are some easy hummingbird nectar recipes?

    A: Successful hummingbird nectar contains 4 parts water to 1 part white sugar. Heating the sugar solution slows fermentation, kills mold and bacteria, and helps the sugar dissolve.
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  • Q: How to Build a Hummingbird Birdhouse?

    A: A hummingbird birdhouse can be constructed by placing a Y-shaped base, such as a forked branch from a bush or tree, in a high location and providing soft materials for the female hummingbird to begin making a nest with. As a rule, hummingbirds do not like using traditional birdhouses due to the confined environment, and are extremely particular about the location of their nest.
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  • How do you make hummingbird nectar?

    Q: How do you make hummingbird nectar?

    A: To make hummingbird nectar, mix one part sugar to four parts water. Stir the mixture as you heat it on the stove until it begins to boil. Remove it from the heat and let it cool to room temperature before pouring it in the feeder.
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  • Will hummingbirds eat seeds in a feeder?

    Q: Will hummingbirds eat seeds in a feeder?

    A: Hummingbirds do not eat from seed feeders but will drink nectar out of nectar feeders. Scientists discovered that hummingbirds do eat small insects from flowers but rely strongly on a high-sugar diet that includes nectar and tree sap.
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  • Q: Where do hummingbirds sleep?

    A: Hummingbirds sleep on their favorite perching spots, such as on a feeder or on a high, secure location with enough visibility. Hummingbird sleep is notable because it is actually a form of hibernation called torpor, where the body expends about one-fifteenth of the energy it normally uses.
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  • Q: When do you stop feeding hummingbirds?

    A: Hummingbird feeders should remain up until the homeowner has not seen a hummingbird at the feeder for two weeks or more. In some areas, hummingbirds may remain all year long. In Northern Hemisphere, hummingbirds usually migrate away during the fall and return to the area in the spring.
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