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Video Transcript: Hummingbird Feeders

(Description: John Schaust sits at a table in his backyard with many hummingbird feeders, showing them and their features and benefits throughout the video. Wild Birds Unlimited Nature Shop logo is static at top right corner of screen.)

[John:] Hi! I’m John Schaust, Chief Naturalist for Wild Birds Unlimited and welcome to my backyard!

(Description: Hummingbird on High-Perch Hummingbird Feeder is seen sipping nectar. “From Our Backyard” with logo appears upper right of screen then fades. “Which Hummingbird Feeder is Right for You?” appears then fades. Soft music plays in background with bird sounds from his yard. Back to John at table.)

[John:] Yep, I’m here looking at hummingbird feeders this time of year. If your hummingbirds aren’t back yet, they will be soon. And this is the time of year we get tons and tons of questions about what to look for in a hummingbird feeder. There are so many…thousands of different types, it seems…of hummingbird feeders. There are decorative, there’s large, there’s small. You know, we have the really, really large size. We have some decorative ones. We have some little teeny ones. So, where do I start? What do I decide to make my decision on and where do I start? Well, probably the first thing I would recommend is, start with the number of hummingbirds you typically get in your backyard.

(Description: “How many hummingbirds are coming to your yard?” pops up briefly lower left corner then fades.)

[John:] If you’re in an area of the country or wherever it might be that has a lot of hummingbirds and you’re getting five, ten, fifteen or more hummingbirds at your feeders, you probably want to consider going with a pretty large-capacity hummingbird feeder, because the hummingbirds are going to go through the nectar pretty darned quick, and that’s exactly what you want in a large feeder that would be able to maintain enough nectar for that large of a group of hummingbirds. If you’ve only got, you know, three, four, five hummingbirds, like most folks do throughout the course of the summer, you probably want something that’s a little smaller or on the medium size. Again, the whole purpose is that you don’t want nectar to stay in that feeder for a long, long time. You want the hummingbirds to be able to use it up and go through it so that you can take it down, clean that feeder and refill it again. So size is the exact place where you want to start.

I would say another thing I would look for in a feeder at all times is – what kind of views am I going to get of the hummingbirds?

(Description: “What kind of views does the feeder offer you?” appears lower left corner then fades.)

[John:] Historically, some of these feeders that have the bottle reservoir, this nice decorative one, or even this bottle one, the traditional one that has been around for decades and decades. The problem with these are that you get very…you have four different ports that they can come to and guess what? Which one do they always come to? Not this one. Not this one. They always go to the one on the back and therefore, you really get limited views of the hummingbird. These types of styles, the saucer-style feeders, are really excellent because you get a great view of the hummingbirds at all times with this raised perch, or “High Perch,” as we call it, “The High Perch Hummingbird Feeder.” You never miss the bird.

(Description: Hummingbird is seen on the High Perch Feeder then back to John.)

[John:] Wherever it’s at on the feeder, whenever you’re watching, you’re going to get a full view of the hummingbird. Some of the other cool things…this thing is so simple and easy to fill. It’s just really, truly two parts and the hanger, and so it’s easy to keep clean. It’s easy to fill. So, you know, some of the other ones that we have, you have to disassemble them, take
them apart, have special brushes and that type of thing. This one, not necessary. It’s really easy to keep clean and to fill the thing up. It even has a little built-in moat right here in the middle. You fill this with water, and that keeps the ants…when you hang this on a pole, the ants love the sugar water and they’ll come down on the hanger here, and quite often, if there wasn’t a water barrier, they would get into the nectar and you’ll see the ants floating around on the top of your nectar. With this water barrier, or the “ant moat” as we call it, it keeps the ants out of your nectar and at bay. It also is drip-proof, which is an important thing because whenever you get nectar or sugar-water, anywhere, you’re going to attract a lot of insects, not just ants. You’re going to attract bees and hornets and wasps and things like this. This one, again, when you fill it, it’s very simple. You’re not going to have a mess. The hummingbirds are going to feed from the top. They’re not going to make a big mess and drip a lot of nectar around. Some of these other ones work on a vacuum principle, so if I were to fill this one up, I would take the bottle off and then I would fill it this way and then I would put the top back on this way and then when I turn it over, the nectar flows into the bottom and it creates a gap up here and that gap is actually a vacuum. Then what happens during the temperature change between night and day, sunny and cloudy, whatever it might be, that changing temperature expands and contracts and it pushes the nectar out of the ports and causes them to drip, which is a real problem, again, with bees and wasps and things like that. So, bottom line: lots of good things to, you know, a very simple, easy-to-fill feeder that you get the best views and protects your feeder from ants.

(Description: “Simple Recommendation: WBU High Perch Hummingbird Feeder” appears in lower left corner then fades.)

[John:] So I would really recommend the simple, easiest, WBU High Perch Hummingbird Feeder. Thanks for joining me today.

(Description: Hummingbird feeds from feeder then Wild Birds Unlimited Nature Shop logo with “www.wbu.com” website URL appears then fades.)