Date: 8/1/22 8:42 am From: Jo Ann Eldridge <joann621...> Subject: Re: No sighting: Question about purchased hummingbird nectar
Well, that is embarrassing. Looks like my draft went to everyone after an accidental key stroke. As I intended to say, thanks to those who responded to my question regarding ready to use hummingbird nectar mix. It is tempting to make life easier for oneself when the opportunity is available and that is what my gift-giver of the mix had in mind for me. I hope it is all right with Lanny that I quote his letter as he is well known for his expertise on hummingbirds and his words are important to all birders:
From: *Lanny Chambers* <lannychambers...> Date: Sun, Jul 31, 2022 at 7:37 PM Subject: Re: No sighting: Question about purchased hummingbird nectar To: Jo Ann Eldridge <joann621...>
Hummingbirds want sucrose from a feeder, period. Just white granulated sugar and ordinary tapwater in a 1:4 syrup. No dye, no fruit juice, no preservatives, no honey, no brown or brownish sugar. All premixes are a ripoff, and potentially unhealthy, no matter what the advertising says. No need to boil, as the bacteria that spoil feeder syrup are poked into the feeder by the birds themselves--nothing you can do about that. Clean the feeder and change the syrup when it starts getting cloudy, which will depend on the temperature and the number of visitors, or at the first signs of black mold.
"Just like flowers" is specious, since every flower species' nectar is different, the only common ingredients being sucrose and water, plus trace amounts of various other chemicals and contamination from insects and windborne dirt. Hummers get all their real nutrition, including fats, protein, minerals, and amino acids, from the insects and spiders they eat. Sucrose is mainly energy to hunt bugs, as well as helpful in building fat reserves.
Lanny Chambers Fenton, MO
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