Did you know you can make your own hummingbird nectar in just a matter of minutes?! We highly recommend this simple DIY. Here are a few reasons why:
1. Homemade nectar may be healthier for hummingbirds than most store-bought nectars. That’s right: many store-bought nectars may actually be harmful to hummingbirds, due to their containing red dye! While research is inconclusive, the Cornell Lab of Ornithology discourages its use.
2. Making your own nectar saves you money. As is alluded to in the linked article above, store-bought nectar has a ridiculous mark-up, considering that it can be made for pennies. Which leads to the last point: the easy recipe!
3. You can whip it up with a two basic ingredients. The first ingredient is one cup of clean drinking water (which you should hopefully have on hand!). The second (and final) ingredient is a quarter cup of plain white sugar. That’s it. Sugar and water.
But wait – the way you mix the sugar and water is important, so that you don’t end up with sludge at the bottom of the bottle of your feeder. In order to dissolve the sugar, boil the water before mixing the ingredients together. But don’t boil the sugar in the water too long, or you will make hard candy! Here is the basic recipe we use:
- Boil 1 cup water in a saucepan.
- Add 1/4 cup of sugar to the saucepan, after the water has reached a rolling boil.
- Turn off the burner under the saucepan.
- Stir until the sugar dissolves.
- Remove from heat and allow the nectar to cool to room temperature.
And there you go, you now had ready-made hummingbird nectar! It’s even easier than making loose-leaf tea, because you don’t have to time it, or strain out the tea leaves.
Now all you need to do is fill up your feeder, and enjoy watching your happy hummers!