Pest Control at the Hummingbird Feeder

Anyone who has ever tried to feed hummingbirds, will soon find out that unwanted visitors will also soon find the hummingbird feeder. Below is an article that I think might help you to deal with these unwanted guests.

Four-Legged Critters

Probably the most typical complaints I hear are about the neighborhood squirrel population. Though they are not predators, squirrels are devastating to a feeder and will knock down and chew up whatever they can get their paws on. As bad, or even worse, in our region are the raccoons that will slip right up to the home at night. Anybody who has had seed feeders knows the continuing battle to defeat the squirrel. Tall slick poles, barriers, repellents, and B-B guns are all efficient – occasionally and for just a little while, although.

Whenever you have a great feeder that you’ve paid your hard earned cash for, the last thing you would like to see is your feeder in pieces on the ground. One tip would be to hang the feeder from a closed eye, utilizing a snap gate D-ring, like is frequently utilized for keys. These are obtainable in any hardware or discount store. Prior to me discovered the ring, I had added a “safety chain” along with the hanger to at least try to prevent the feeder from hitting the ground and breaking. Why it took me years to think of the ring, I have no idea. Your friendly squirrel or raccoon might still chew whatever he can get to and for that there’s not much you can do, other than sheer inaccessibility.

Bees and Wasps

Bees, wasps, and yellow jackets love the hummingbird nectar and could be a issue of safety for both the humans and also the hummingbirds. Bees and wasps are attracted to yellow and, quite a few of the flower decorations on commercial feeders are yellow. Getting rid of the flowers, or painting them red is really a good place to begin. Numerous of the bee guard feeders also are the leakiest and also the puddle outside the feeder completely negates the need for the bee guard.

The initial action you might take when bees start to take over, is merely to move the feeder a couple of feet farther in the yard. Hummers are a great deal smarter than bees and will rapidly adapt, although the bees might just assume the source is gone and just go away.

An additional plan I have heard about, would be to hang a second hummingbird feeder with nectar of 3 parts water to 1 part of sugar and decrease the hummer’s feeder to 5 parts water to 1 part of sugar. Separate the lower-sugar content feeder slightly from the old location. The bees will prefer the richer 3:1 nectar, the hummers will do fine on the 5:1 nectar, and also the move ought to confuse the insects. If the feeder drips at all, it’s essential to keep the region of the drip washed down and make sure it is clean so as not to attract more pests.

Bats

Although bats aren’t generally a problem within the Midwest, they could be in some other parts of the country, especially the Southwest. Some bats are also nectar feeders and pollinators and can drain a feeder virtually overnight. A hummingbird feeder with bee guards will keep the bees out or the feeder could be taken in at night. If taken in at night, you should keep in mind the hummers start to feed just prior to sunrise and this is really a critical feeding time for them. So, your feeder needs to be out when they start to feed.

Ants

Ants could be a real issue, and usually are. Additionally to being annoying, they can get into the nectar and die there. This is an unsightly mess and can contaminate the nectar. Ants could be deterred by the use of “ant guards” which hang between the hook and also the feeder. Two kinds are usually obtainable in birding stores and occasionally within the bird section of hardware stores. One type of ant guard is really a cup which is filled with water and forms a moat the ants aren’t able to cross to get down to the feeder, and into the nectar. The second kind of ant guard,is an inverted cup that is placed between the hook and feeder which is smeared with cooking grease or commercial “tanglefoot” compound to deter the ants from crossing over to the feeder and getting into the hummingbird nectar.

With the case of the ant moat, some people suggest using cooking oil within the ant moat, but birds might see it as a water source and also the oil isn’t a great option. The oil might also get onto the hummingbirds’ feathers. In the case of the inverted cup, “tanglefoot” ought to be carefully placed so it can’t get onto the feathers of any bird which may come into contact with the ant guard. Hummers are so light that the “tanglefoot” may ensnare them.

One source recommends hanging your feeder from fishing line to discourage ants.

Other Feeder Guests

Numerous other birds and animals like the nectar and will frequently be seen attempting to feed at a hummingbird feeder. Besides the obvious insects, lizards might also discover the nectar to be tasty. Orioles, chickadees, finches, and woodpeckers also like the nectar on occasion and will particularly use feeders with perches, even though the lack of a perch doesn’t usually stop them from feeding at the feeder. Some of these could be tempted away from the hummingbird feeder by placing a dish of fruit or fruit jelly out just for them or supplying a nice suet block for the woodpeckers.

I hope this article has provided you with some helpful tips on Pest Control at the Hummingbird Feeder.

Article Source: http://EzineArticles.com/?expert=Terrie_Merritt

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