A cute Hummingbird enjoying sugar water from a red bird feeder in rural Minnesota, USA.
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Protect Your Hummingbird Feeder From Wasps With These Helpful Tips
Saucer Feeder
The nectar in a saucer feeder, unlike in a vacuum feeder, sits away from the top, covered by a plate with holes where birds can dip their beaks to draw up nectar.
When refilling the feeder, avoid filling the nectar to the top to keep it out of reach from wasps, but ensure it is within reach of hummingbirds' long beaks.
Nectar Guards
Nectar guards are small plastic pieces that can be placed in the feeder ports to reduce the size of the feeding holes, preventing wasps from crawling inside.
These ports are wide enough for hummingbirds' narrow beaks and tongues to access the sweet food. They are easily available on Amazon and can be replaced if they wear out.
Avoid Yellow Feeders
All birds and pollinating insects see a different spectrum of colors. While hummingbirds are more attracted to red, wasps are most attracted to yellow.
Avoid yellow markings on feeders, nectar guards, and decorative elements. Instead, opt for red or clear parts, and avoid placing feeders near yellow or white flowers.
Move Your Feeders
Wasps are clever creatures, and when it comes to finding food, they like to work smarter, not harder. They will likely keep returning to the same food source.
Experts suggest throwing them off by moving your feeders periodically. Hummingbirds will continue looking for it, while wasps may move to an easier food source nearby.
Clean The Feeder
In colder months, the Audubon Society suggests emptying and cleaning hummingbird feeders weekly or each time you refill them and twice a week in summer.
Using hot water or a gentle vinegar dilution can be effective for cleaning out the sweet spills that attract wasps while keeping your hummingbirds safe and healthy.