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We just got done rescuing a hummingbird that we found in the shed! It is really hot here right now and we don't know how long he was in there but when Jason found him he seemed really tired and dehydrated so we fed him some sugar water and he perked right up. He seemed to really like us, he sat in Jason's hand for a little while and just kind of hung out, then when he got his standing he flew off and is all better now!! It was a really cool experience, this as close as I have ever come to one in real life, and it was really neat to watch him drink from the water we brought him!! We are both big animal lovers so it was a great feeling to be able to help this little creature!!
Bring him super sweet sugar water that has been boiled first then cooled to kill the germs. My sister Bonnie hangs several hummer feeders in her yard every summer and is blessed with their beauty. She uses a 3 to 1 ratio: 3 cups of water, 1 cup of sugar brought to a boil then cooled and put in those feeders that look like flowers. A funnel shape seems to be the easiest for these birds to get their food. These birds eat a lot for their size!
We gave him some sugar water just to get him started before he flew off, Jason is boiling up some more and getting ready to put a feeder out for him in case he is still around in the yard somewhere. We are hoping that he is still around and will come back to visit often!!
That's awesome! Aren't they amazing little creatures? We have 8 or 10 of the little flying gems and sometimes they hover a few inches from our faces just to check us out Lol. If you don't hang any feeders yet you definitely should! You'll get hours of entertainment watching them! :)
P.S. The food is easy to make its 4 parts water 1 part sugar so for example to make one cup it would be 1/4 sugar and 1 cup of water. I bring to a boil and then boil for 5 minutes. Once it's cool it's ready to put in your feeder.
Thank you Donna!! Yes he is definitely a cutie!! It warmed my heart just to encounter the little guy!!
@Jenny, yes it was wonderful, I'm just glad we could help him before it was too late!!
@Lara, he is getting ready to hang one now, and I'm sure we will get others, we have a ton of feeders out just no hummingbird feeders, I have been wanting to put some out for sometime but just haven't gotten around to it. Now we have a reason too!!!
So, that's the secret to attracting those little birds. Thanks for the recipe and letting me know I should boil it. Will see about getting a feeder. Orginally I was thinking of putting some honey out on the patio.
I use the 4 to 1 ratio. Only need to boil it for a minute or so, much longer and it makes a thick syrup. 4 cups water, one cup sugar. I boil it no longer than 30 seconds to one minute. works great.
The instructions I got from a book long ago were to use 3 to 1 to attract them, if you don't already have hummers, then go to 4 to 1. If you already have hummers the 4 to 1 works fine. No food coloring needed, most hummer feeders have plenty red to attract them. All it takes is a red spot on your hat the size of a quarter...(that's what I had on a hat, one flew up and looked me over from a foot away, they've also flew in and checked out my camera strap, which has PENTAX in inch tall red letters on it) Whether the food coloring is unhealthy for them is a long debated subject, I prefer to not take the chance. Mine never gets any food coloring, and first time I set one out this year I had a hummer using it within 3 hours.
I read an interesting story a few years ago. We had a hummer show up late in the year I didn't recognize, so I was looking for an ID online. Someone saw a hummer with something hanging on its beak, it finally dropped from exhaustion. They picked it up and found it had speared a bumble bee while flying, the bee got stuck on its beak so it couldn't feed, they removed the bee and nursed it back to the land of the living and let it loose. Pictures were also posted so I know this is not a fairy tale...
Also, it's being recommended now to leave your hummer feeders up during cold weather in the south, hummers are apparently starting to winter in the southern US, or have always done it and nobody knew. Someone called a man who bands hummingbirds in Georgia, and in mid winter told him she had a hummer in her yard. No way he said, they winter in South America. She told him he better come look, and gave him an ID so he did. and found that a Rufous Hummingbird was in her back yard in mid winter. Since then more mid winter sightings (confirmed) have been reported, all along the gulf states from Florida to Texas, so I've started leaving my feeders up until cold weather rolls in, only removing them if I know I haven't seen one in a long time. If a freeze is expected, I bring it inside at dark then put it back up first thing in the AM.
I'm pretty sure its a Ruby throat girl - not a him or he. I've had them tumble over in extreme heat in CA. Bring them inside, cool them off, feed them - and they zip right off. I have one of these girls that visits my pot of flowers right outside my window most every afternoon, then scoots over to the bleeding hearts.
Thanks for sharing such a sweet and heartwarming story. I once had a little hummer fly inside my home and hide inside between the window and the blind. When I helped the little creature out and cupped it in my hands it was such a marvelous feeling. I didn't realize their long beaks are so pliable. Then I took it outside and off it flew. :0)
@Andee, thank you, we will be keeping an eye out, I wouldn't want anything else to get caught in there!!
@Dale, I sure hope the bird will feel at home here and come back to visit!! My hubby and I would have a whole zoo if we could, we really love us some animals!!
@Billy, thank you for letting me know the exact recipe, I will let my hubby know!!
@JC, it was an awesome experience!!
@Roy, really a girl? That's cool, I don't know a whole lot about them so thank you for letting me know!!
@Chris, Glad to do so :) it made my day too!!
@Carol, it is a really good feeling, and their beaks are really neat!! Glad things worked out well for you and your little hummingbird!!
The only time that I've ever seen a hummingbird, without it's wings going crazy fast, is at our water feature. There are several nests in a nearby Western Red Cedar and they perch on a rock and take a few slow sips before flying off back to the tree, but I never would be able to get as close to them as you have with it in your palm.
Btw, hummingbirds love Bee Balm. I planted some because I loved the flower and it's smell. Turns out hummingbirds do too.
That's nice. It tends to be something you'll treasure for a long time when you get a chance to rescue a hummingbird...
Tightens Onion on Belt... (Not so obscure Grampa Simpson reference.) Why, I remember it like it was just yesterday, back in late spring of the year aught five...
I was returning from a vacation in Arizona, where I had been photographing hummingbirds. I stopped one evening to camp at Lake Fausse Point State Park, off of interstate 10 in Louisiana. I was looking around for bird photography opportunities, and found Ruby Throat Hummingbirds mobbing feeders at the nature center and boat dock there. Well, I have very few ruby throat photos, so I was eager to set up and get some photos of them. As I was setting up my "outdoor studio", a boy told me that there was something I would want to see, and he showed me a hummingbird that had fallen into the water just out of reach from a boat dock. I quickly shed wallet, cell phone, etc, and jumped in to retrieve the bird. I thought the water wouldn't be over my head... Blub, blub, blub... So I soddenly swam to the surface, cupped the bird in two hands, and managed to keep bird and nose afloat to the dock, where an onlooker took custody of the bird. We put him on a bird feeder for a snack, and then on twig on a nearby tree to dry off, and I took some seaweed off of his wings using a pine needle as a tool. After about 15 minutes he was warm and dry enough to fly, and was feeding and flying, and hopefully was fully recovered.
On the other hand, I took over an hour to get dry enough to work and back on track. During this time I read signs, which I had not previously noticed, which prohibited swimming, and others which prohibited feeding the gators... I suppose I could have broken both rules at once...
Here's a photo I took after the incident, and I like to think that it may be the same bird.
@Jani, I was very fortunate to be able to get that close, I was just glad he stayed in my hubby's hand long enough for me to run inside and get my camera!! Thanks for the tip on the Bee Balm, my husband loves gardening so I just let him know we should get some!!
@Andi, Not yet, but my head is already reeling with ideas!! lol
@Gregory, I was wondering when you would stop in!! lol
@Greg, that is crazy!!! Glad the gators didn't get you!!!
@Janine, So true!!
@Thank you Otil!!
@Jim, thank you for the recipe!
@Angel, glad I could brighten up your day!!
@Lara, thank you for posting that, I will check it out!!
Not a hummingbird story, but similar. Just 2 weeks or so ago we were cutting limbs off a large dying oak and knocked down a Mockingbird nest. My sister told me to grab the camera, we had baby birds, i was inside cooking breakfast. I got out there and found her trying to feed a worm to 2 baby mockingbirds, which I then fed for the rest of the day into the next. We put them in a small easter basket along with an abandoned Cardinal's nest, hung it on a feeder post in the front yard not far from the original nesting location. The2nd morning when i went out for my 3rd feeding I saw a Mockingbird fly away and the nest was swinging. I fed them and made sure next time (20 minutes or so) I sneaked around the corner and watched before approaching. Sure enough, the parents had found them and had taken over feeding again. A few days later they left, haven't seen them since.
I got some pictures, unfortunately nothing good enough to upload...but here's one of the more decent shots of them before mom discovered them and took over from my Flickr page