SBS : ~Broad-tailed Hummingbird ~

Sheila’s Bird Shots: ~ Broad-tailed Hummingbird ~

"I wish this itch would go away"
“I wish this itch would go away”

In my garage I have several Hummingbird feeders hanging on pegs collecting dust. Several, because every time I visit a hardware store, I mossy over and look at the feeders and there is usually a cute one just asking me to take it home. I blame Howard the hubby, because he likes to go to hardware stores. If I was being honest, so do I. In fact I love going to hardware stores.


Well, just maybe this one will help keep the bees and wasps away, I tell myself. So one comes home with me and after a few tries it goes on the peg next to a couple more. I just hate seeing the bees chasing the Hummingbirds away. I don’t worry too much, because throughout this spring and summer we have had several Hummers hanging out in the yard enjoying the flowers I planted just for them.


Howard, said one day “Why don’t you hang up some of your feeders for them?” Oh jeez “here we go again.”


Back in the early part of spring, at the time I brought an Oriole feeder, I also bought the very best Hummer feeding mix on the market; however, I won’t mention the name. So I got out my feeders, washed them really well, filled them using this mix and hung two feeders up, one in the front yard and one in the back. Gotta keep the hubby happy!


Guess what? The Hummers would take one sip and fly away not to return to the feeder. The bees, wasps and the House Finches loved my attempt at feeding the tiny guys. I have never seen the House Finches enjoying the Hummer feeder as I have this year. I know the importance of the honey bees and don’t want to cause any harm to them, but I just wish they would leave the Hummers alone while they are trying to eat.


One afternoon last week, around happy hour, hubby and I were sitting out on the deck watching one of the ignored, cute hummer feeders I had filled with pretty red liquid. Howard says “I don’t think they like that stuff. Why don’t you try mixing your own food for them? Okay, I say. I can see that they just don’t like the pretty red liquid in my cute little feeder.  


Last Sunday I mixed up a batch using the recommended blend of one cup of water to four teaspoons of sugar. I filled the two feeders with my blah, white blend and we waited to see how the Hummingbirds would react to my new offering. Almost immediately we had several female Broad-tailed Hummers declare their claim to these feeders. Yeah! Finally!


These females have been busy scouting, eating, fighting and resting. They are so much fun to watch. Just wondering how much longer, this season, they will be around.


Broad-tailed Hummingbird (female)
Broad-tailed Hummingbird (female)

bird on a wire

such a tiny life full of fire

female without doubt

During this past week I was able to capture a few images of a Hummer as she sat on one of Howard’s Amateur Ham Radio antennas. They seem to love perching there, I believe, because it is high and the perfect scouting post.


After taking a few photos the other day and now looking at their facial expressions it is amusing and makes me wonder, what are they thinking. I wonder if a female Hummer could talk what would she say?


I caught her as she was flying away. I was playing around with the colors of the background.
I caught her as she was flying away. I was playing around with the colors of the background.

7 thoughts on “SBS : ~Broad-tailed Hummingbird ~”

  1. I so love the hummingbirds…great entertainment! I especially love the way they zip through the air and show off their aerial acrobatics. Great photos Sheila!

    1. Hi Gay. I hope you are enjoying Moab, it sounds like you are from your blog!! We are having a very hot weekend here in Loveland, CO. Since it has warmed up a bit here, the bees and wasps are back. Grrrrr. The Hummers are amazing little birds.

  2. Sheila, your hummingbirds are adorable! I am not surprised to hear about your trouble with the hummingbird mixes. Most are not even good for the hummingbirds. The red food coloring is really bad for them. You can easily mix a batch of your own nectar by combining 1 cup sugar with 4 cups water. Bring this mixture to a boil and let it cool. then fill your feeders and store the excess in the fridge until needed. Do not make it sweeter as it can actually make the birds hyper! As for your feeders and keeping bees away, there is a really clever saucer-shaped feeder you can buy that has a built in ant trap. It is usually sold at Wild birds Unlimited. I bet there is one near you in Loveland. The design discourages bees as they cannot get at the nectar. I will try to find you a picture or else do a post on it soon. I know how much fun feeding hummingbirds can be and would hate to see you discouraged from it.

    One other feeder that I found and love is made by Stokes and is sold at Petsmart and Petco. It is very easy to fill and clean and also discourages bees. I think I do have a photo of this one on my blog. If you friend me on facebook I do have photos of it on my page. Good Luck with your feeding. Keep it up! the birds really need it in the fall when they are migrating through.

    Also, at this time of year make sure you clean your feeders really well as mold can build up in the feeders. Washing with a mixture of hot water and white vinegar will discourage mold. Just make sure you rinse very well before refilling. Right now I am currently changing nectar every other day but we are running over 100F every day with lows in the 80’s at night. Once it cools off I can let it go for 3 to 4 days.

    Thanks for all your comments on my blog!

    1. Katie, thanks so very much for posting and sharing your experience about the Hummers, feeders and bee traps! I will look for these items for sure and use your formula for feeding. Anything we can do to help these beautiful guys make it south!!! You are most welcome re posting on your blog. I adore people that adore birding!! I met a wonderful lady when I moved here and she became my birding mentor. We had some great times together. She was much older than me and has since passed on. I will always be thankful to her!!

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