Protecting HummingbirdsHummingbirds 101 »
Hummingbirds face many dangers in their everyday lives while eating, flying, or perching. When you are setting up your yard landscape to be “hummingbird friendly”, always keep thinking of ways to protect them. Danger can come in many forms. One may be from one of their own kind who feels his territory has been invaded.
Extreme weather is always a concern; a heavy frost is as potentially fatal as severe heat and drought (due to dehydration).
Strong winds can blow hummingbirds into hard, blunt or sharp objects, so it's a good idea to provide wind protection by the types of trees and shrubs you plant in your lawn. A heavy downpour can also cause problems, as it can force a hummingbird into water and drown them.
Physical objects can pose a danger. Hummingbirds sometimes accidentally fly into any number of things: windows, trees, cars, etc. Often they're just stunned and will get up and fly away. Other times they may need first-aid.
Predators impose grave dangers too. Domestic cats are a huge problem. Because hummingbirds zip and dart around, cats enjoy the game of stalking, catching and killing them. Even frogs, fish, snakes and lizards can snag a low-flying hummingbird.
Other dangers include larger, aggressive birds who will kill and eat smaller birds, squirrels who raid the bird feeders or insects who invade hummingbird feeders. Squirrels, chipmunks, blue jays and crows will eat hummingbird eggs and babies.
Lastly, do not use chemical pesticides in your yard. Hummingbirds feed on insects for protein, and can accidentally ingest poisoned ones. Best to let hummingbirds control the bug problem. And do not spray your flowers with pesticides; hummingbirds will be certain to ingest it when they gather nectar from the blossoms.
Here are some ways of protecting hummingbirds to resolve these problematic situations, making your bird feeders one of the most popular and most frequented in the neighborhood – resulting in hours of bird watching fun for you and your family.