Make a Hummingbird Feeder

Adding a hummingbird feeder to your yard is a great way to support local ecology AND it will provide hours of entertainment for you and your family

Hummingbirds (family Trochilidae) have long, slender bills and tube-like tongues that they use to drink nectar from brightly-colored flowers. Nectar (along with insects they catch) gives Hummingbirds the energy and high metabolism to move quickly. 

Hummingbirds are amazing pollinators. They carry pollen from plant to plant, allowing the native wildflowers and plants in our yards, gardens, and parks to reproduce. Pollination is an essential component of our ecological system. The human race and all of earth's terrestrial (land-based) ecosystems would not survive without birds, insects, bats, and other animals, which pollinate 180,000 plant species around the world, including nearly 80% of all food plants (or crops).

Click here to learn more about pollination

How to make your hummingbird feeder

  • Small mason jar with 2-part metal lid
  • Thick red plastic or metal material (a plastic folder, lid for oatmeal or raisin container, old book cover, anything red lying around that you could cut)
  • Pen
  • Scissors
  • Hole puncher 
  • 1/2 cup sugar
  • Twine or string
  • Red ribbon, paper, markers, etc
Step 1: Make a red lid

Remove the band and lid from your jar. You will make a new red lid because Hummingbirds are attracted to warm, bright colors like red when they are looking for a snack. 

To make the new lid, hold the original lid down on your red plastic folder or other red material and trace a circle around it. Cut out the circle and punch four holes in the center, equally spaced.

Step 2: Make Hummingbird Nectar
In a small saucepan, bring 2 cups of water to a boil. Add ½ cup of sugar and stir until dissolved. Keep it simple at a ratio of four parts water to one part sugar, and refrain from adding dyes or sweeteners. Let the nectar cool.
Step 3: Assemble Feeder

Fill your jar with the cooled nectar. Place the red plastic insert in the lid and screw onto the jar. Use a piece of twine or rope to create a loop for hanging the feeder on a tree branch or hook.

Step 4: Decorate your feeder

Use red ribbon, craft paper, or anything else on hand to decorate your feeder with red.

Step 5: Hang your feeder

Choose a tree branch, shepherd's hook, or another place to hang your feeder. Make sure to hang it near a window so that you can watch from inside your home!

Step 6: Watch and share

Keep an eye on your feeder for your first thirsty Hummingbird!

Check out these websites for different feeder designs:

Homemade Recycled Bottle Hummingbird Feeder & Nectar Recipe
27 Homemade Hummingbird Feeders from Recycled Materials
Bring Hummingbirds to Your Yard with a DIY Feeder

Take a photo of your hanging hummingbird feeder and share it on social media. Make sure to tag @peancorg and #PEAYoungLeaders to be entered into the weekly Young Eco Leaders Raffle. 

Click here to return to the list of all Young Eco Leaders activities

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