Homemade food for hummingbirds is made up of water and sugar. They love these homemade foods because they taste like the nectars they eat in the wild. Hummingbirds love the homemade food you keep in their feeders but so do bees and even ants.
When these bees and ants get to the feeders, they become unwanted guests that will eventually contaminate the sugar water. Contaminated water is undrinkable for hummingbirds, and they will not return when the water is contaminated. This guide will show you how to get rid of these bees without harming them and your hummers.
One of the most effective ways to stop bees from coming to your hummingbird feeder is by using a red colored feeder. Bees can’t see red colors.
Hide your hummingbird in shady areas because bees can’t navigate in areas where there is no sunlight.
Making sugar water for the bees and placing their own feeders away from that of your hummer is a good way to stop the bees from coming to your hummingbird feeder
Bees Away! Seven Ways To Keep Bees From Your Hummingbird Feeders
So, you don’t want the bees coming to your hummingbird feeder and chasing away your tiny friends. However, you also don’t want to swat the bees and kill them. Of course, it isn’t wise to try to attack bees as they may sting you. So, here are some tested and trusted ways to stop bees from coming to your hummingbird feeders.
- Patch Leaks
You see, sometimes the solution to your problem can be as simple as patching a leaky feeder. If your hummingbird feeder is constantly dripping, it will be easy for bees to get into the water.
A good way to prevent this is by simply checking your hummingbird feeder to see if it’s leaking. Do this every week. Make it a habit to look at your bird feeder and see if water is dripping from anywhere. Sometimes, to fix a leak, all you need to do is tighten your screw.
If you notice that there is a crack on your hummingbird feeder, clean out the nectar and clean the feeder. Then, use plumbing tape and take care of the damage.
- Clean Your Hummingbird Feeder
Again, the solution is in the simple things. Many people neglect their hummingbird feeders and then wonder why there are so many bees coming to the feeder. It would help if you committed to cleaning your bee feeder at least every two weeks.
Your hummingbirds may carry nectar on their bills and drip it into the feeders when they drink. When the nectar drops into the feeder, bees will smell it and take it as an open invitation to come and pollinate the water. We cannot stress this enough, please Clean. your. Hummingbird. Feeder.
- Confuse The Bees By Using A Red Colored Hummingbird Feeder
Bees don’t see colors the way we do. The range spectrum that bees can see is limited. This means that you can use their partial color blindness to your advantage.
Bees do not see red color. Hence, if you get a red feeder, bees would not be able to see it and trouble the sugar water in it. Using a red-colored feeder is bad for bees but good for your hummers because they are particularly interested in bright colors. This is surely a win-win situation.
- Hide Your Hummingbird Feeder Under Trees
Trees are a great way to keep bees away from your feeder. Bees navigate better under sunlight. They use the light of the sun when they are moving through new environments. However, when you place your feeder in a spot without any sunlight, you are taking power away from the bees and putting it back where it belongs- your hands.
It is important to keep space in mind when you are using this trick. Hummingbirds need space to hover as they drink. So, ensure not to inconvenience your hummers to get rid of the bees.
- Move The Hummingbird Feeder
If you want to stop someone from stealing from you, don’t just hide what they are stealing; move them. This tactic also applies to bees. Not that we are saying bees are thieves, but you get our drift. Moving your hummingbird feeder will scatter the mental map of your yard that bees have in their small heads.
If you are going to use this tactic, it is important you time it properly. It would help if you moved the feeder frequently enough to throw the bees off. However, you need to be careful, so you don’t move it too often and throw your hummingbirds off too. Hummingbirds are highly cerebral and moving their feeder a few meter won’t confuse them. When a bee searches for food, it may move a few meters further to check again, and when it doesn’t find the food, it moves on. You can try moving your hummingbird feeder further from where it used to be and check if the bees will stop coming.
- Whip Out A Decoy Feeder
You have moved the feeder further out, and you have also tried to hide the feeder under some shade, but yet the bees keep coming. It’s time to whip out the big guns, your decoy feeder!
A decoy feeder will settle the bees and your hummingbirds at the same time. So, get a feeder, make some bee sugar water and place it a bit further away from the feeder of the hummingbirds. This way, everyone has their feeder, and you can finally have some peace. Just remember to make the bee water a bit sweeter than your hummers; bees like it.
- Explore Your Artsy Part
If you are desperate and artsy enough, you can stop the bees from going to your hummingbird feeders. Bees will not enter a territory they think is already occupied. This presents a simple solution for you. Build a fake bee nest. Once the bees see an artificial bee nest, they will turn around and be on their merry way.
With a brown paper bag, scissors, glue, and your mind, you can make a convincing bee nest.
How To Care For Your Hummingbird Feeder
We figure that one of the reasons why your hummingbird feeder is under a bee attack is that you aren’t taking proper care of it. In this paragraph, we will show you how you can take care of your feeder, and hopefully, it will stop the bees from coming.
- This is a no-brainer, but we have to say it. The best way to care for your hummingbird feeder is by cleaning the feeder components. This is why you need to select a feeder that is easy to clean. You may get discouraged from cleaning your feeder regularly if it is particularly difficult to clean. Before you refill your feeder with sugar water, clean them thoroughly and rinse it with hot water. Use a brush to scrub the insides to remove any sugar residue.
- You need to change the sugar water solution. Sugar water solution will often get sticky and moldy and, if not frequently changed, can become an attraction to ants and bees. Resist the temptation to top off half-filled feeders with new sugar water solutions. Always fill the feeder with a sugar water solution that will last a day or two at maximum.
- Please don’t buy a feeder that drips. Dripping feeders are magnets for pests such as ants and bees. Buy a feeder with a moat to keep the ants away. It would help if you also bought feeders that have bee guards. These guards will prevent the bee from reaching the sugar water solution, but it would allow the hummingbirds to feed.