You might be surprised to hear that hummingbirds eat a variety of foods, including tiny spiders and insects. Hummingbirds also supplement their diet with nectar from flowers in the wild—giving them a source of water, and energy-packed sugars to fuel their active lives. Did you know that a hummingbird needs to eat half of its weight in sugar every day?
Nectar is a naturally occurring substance, but it is also commercially produced using the same ingredients hummingbirds enjoy in nature. Some brands of nectar contain added nutrients—vitamins and minerals like calcium and vitamin D. These additives help hummingbirds make strong egg shells.
If you’re wondering how to make nectar, it can easily be made at home with just a few steps and two ingredients; sugar and water. Mix four parts water with one part refined white sugar thoroughly until all the sugar has dissolved. That’s all there is to it.
Some choose to boil their water so the sugar is more easily dissolved, but that’s not necessary if you mix thoroughly. If you do choose to heat your water, be sure to allow it to cool before filling your hummingbird feeders.
If you don’t know how to make nectar, or simply don’t have time to make it at home, there are several options available to purchase. You can buy nectar in powder, concentrate or ready-to-use formulas. We offer Bird Health+ and Simply Nectar products. Both are made with hummingbirds' health in mind.
Bird Health+ hummingbird nectars are available in no-dye and non-harmful natural dye variants. This nectar also has a higher sugar content than leading competitors, and birds recognize it as like the nectar they naturally find in flowers.
Simply Nectar is the only preservative-, dye- and chemical-free ready-to-use hummingbird nectar. In fact, the only ingredients are 100% pure cane sugar and filtered water! Instead of buying purified water or boiling your own, just grab a box of Simply Nectar and start filling your hummingbird feeder! No fuss, no mess.
Helpful Tips for Making Homemade Hummingbird Nectar
- Do not substitute other sweeteners for refined white sugar
- Hummingbird nectar can be stored in a refrigerator for up to two weeks
- Clean your hummingbird feeder before replacing unused nectar