I hope everyone is doing well. I live in the Houston, TX area. I am in the market for a bird feeder and a hummingbird feeder for my home.
I have an acreage property, so I am not restricted on the size or style of the feeder.
Does anyone have recommendations for an online vendor and possibly even a style for each?
Thank you so much,
Recommendation for a bird feeder and hummer feeder
I too live on an acreage and have plenty of feeders. I am out in the country, so we get a lot of birds that may not go in town. I like platform feeders which are used by most birds and have three of those. I also have one hopper with a tray underneath, various suet cages/nesting material holders, etc...
We made our own platforms, but I like the ones Wild Birds Unlimited sells. We have one tray attached below one of their hopper feeders. Their poles are great because you just screw them into the ground, no digging required.
I really like the Hummzinger feeder for ease of cleaning and it has a built in ant moat. http://www.duncraft.com/Aspects-HummZinger-Ultra-Hummingbird-Feeder?ref=CJ
Last year I was seeing more hummingbirds at my flowers out back than the feeders, so if you have the time, plant some hummingbird flowers (Just make sure whatever you get was not treated with neonics which harm pollinators and hummingbirds.) The hummingbirds here seem to have a preference for Bee Blossom over Colimbine. I put a Trumpet Creeper in the ground yesterday and hope this one lives. I had cuttings last year that didn't make it.
I also use ant moats as feeders for Orioles. I'll post a picture instead of explaining. This one was attached to the window, but I also put them on shepherd's hooks. You still have to have a moat filled with water above this to keep the ants out of the jelly.
Nails are pounded into one of our platforms and on a tree stump for holding orange halves. In the second picture, you can see I filled an empty orange half with jelly. I do that until the orange half gets icky than just pitch it. Literally, my lawn looks littered with orange peels, but I do that to keep cats away.
You may get some undesirable birds, so adjust the feed or feeders to limit them, but it is hard to completely exclude those if you want the others. My overall favorite family of birds are North American sparrows, but to feed them the millet they prefer, I am going to have grackles, cowbirds and house sparrows. By breeding season, most native sparrow species have moved north, with only the Chipping sparrows coming to the feeders, so I put out less millet and they find other foods.
I hope you find something that works for you and can enjoy a lot of birds. :)
This is an old photo I have posted before, but it will work.
The feeder at "1 o'clock" that looks like 1/2 a feeder is one designed to attach to a window. It brings the birds in close and is less likely to freeze in freezing weather (I also recommend increasing the sugar:water ratio to 3.5 to 1 to help keep it from freezing). Downside is that the point of attachment between base and jar eventually gives out, I have gone through quite a few of these.
Feeders at 5 & 7 o'clock are basically the same 5/right is the smaller jar, assembled. Left/7 is the larger container, disassembled. Red bases are interchangeable. This is the best model I have found because it comes apart in three pieces and can be quickly, easily and thoroughly cleaned. And it is fairly sturdy - no small hard to clean easy to break parts. Latest model has ant-proof ports - I just got it so it hasn't been through a full season, but it seems okay so far.
Of the models shown, I really only like those two styles - I can't recommend the rest.
Locate your feeders out of the wind. If you have a windy site, you will have to post mount your feeders - hanging feeders in wind equals syrup ants and wasps on the ground.
Thank you everyone. Are any of you in the Houston area?
I got a feeder, now I need to set it up. I got the Hummzinger feeder from Duncraft
I have a question, can I use Sugar in the raw/Raw Sugar Natural Cane Turbinado to create the nectar?
Or do I need to use refined sugar?
I am not in Texas. I cannot think of anyone off hand who is in the bird forum.
No you must use the refined sugar. I wish we could use the "better" sugar, but there is still molasses in the raw and even organic which can harm the hummingbirds.
I like the flat circle feeders. I think they are the easiest to clean.
I have a very small brush that works really well to stick in the little portals.