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Old 08-21-2009, 07:03 PM   #1
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Default No red for hummers

No red dye that is. I was looking at the hummingbird photos and notice not a few feeders with red sugar water. So I thought I'd share this.
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If feeders are cleaned and filled with freshly-made, hot water, sugar solution every day, then it may not be necessary to bring the solution to a boil. If you plan to store solution for two or more days, boiling is a must. Adding red food-dye coloring is unnecessary. The red on a feeder is enough to attract hummers.
Feeding Hummingbirds
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Old 08-21-2009, 07:04 PM   #2
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A bit off the subject but still good to know.
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If you live in a cold climate then make sure you remove the perches so the hummingbirds keep their metabolism up while feeding (they actually could get too cold and die from feeding while perched in winter).
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DO NOT USE HONEY as this can kill hummingbirds.
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Old 08-21-2009, 07:19 PM   #3
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Well, hummingbirds aren't going to be perched anywhere in winter in "a cold climate" because they migrate. Hummingbirds perch. On tree limbs, on grasses, on the feeder. They're just fine with perching. LOL!

The red dye used in commercial hummingbird food is derived from coal tar. Sounds bad to me.

No need to use anything other than sugar and water. The colour of the feeder will attract the birds.
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Old 08-22-2009, 08:31 AM   #4
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Prairiefreak View Post
Well, hummingbirds aren't going to be perched anywhere in winter in "a cold climate" because they migrate. Hummingbirds perch. On tree limbs, on grasses, on the feeder. They're just fine with perching. LOL!
You got me there Prairiefreak. I have no idea what they mean. Cold climate in California maybe?
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Old 08-22-2009, 09:41 AM   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Prairiefreak View Post
Well, hummingbirds aren't going to be perched anywhere in winter in "a cold climate" because they migrate.
Normally they do, but I've herd of them staying around because people keep feeding them. The trouble is they're completely dependent on the person refilling the feeder every day or they'll likely die.
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Old 08-22-2009, 10:54 AM   #6
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My new neighbors put a feeder out and then left it. For weeks. Finally I couldn't stand it. I waited until they were gone one day, then removed and trashed it. I couldn't summon the guts to tell them you have to tend to these things every other day or so. Hopefully they won't put another one back up.
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Old 08-22-2009, 08:44 PM   #7
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One of my favourite sites:

Hummingbird Myths: The "Top Ten" (Plus Two)
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Old 08-22-2009, 10:44 PM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Prairiefreak View Post

What a great link, thanks for sharing!

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Old 08-25-2009, 12:26 AM   #9
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I've been enjoying and being informed by the Hilton Pond website for several years now. Their real-world site is located not far (just two counties over) from where I live; I've been getting around to going on a tour for almost as long.
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Old 08-29-2009, 12:14 AM   #10
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That's a nice link to the top ten plus two.

Cornell has an article that states one reason to add a drop or two of red dye is so that we know when to refill the feeders-
http://www.dnr.cornell.edu/ext/info/...ct%20sheet.pdf
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