Our hummingbirds arrive at Big Mill B&B sometime around Easter – and it is with a flourish and a big show, chattering and demanding food.
And since we are a designated Bird and Breakfast Bird-Friendly Business, we willingly obliged. Guy’s outstanding photo, taken here at Big Mill B&B, earned him 1st place in the 2010 Beaufort County Arts Council Nature/Wildlife photography contest.
Guests often ask me if there is any time during the year when you should stop feeding hummingbirds? If you have had a similar question, here’s my answer:
It is perfectly alright to leave the feeders out until freezing weather arrives. The birds usually leave when their food sources (flower nectar and bugs) are no longer available. You may get a traveling hummingbird guest en route to warmer climates. Big Mill seems to be a favorite spot for such hummingbird “refuelings!”
Hummingbird Nectar Recipe
4 parts hot boiling water
1 part refined white sugar
Few drops of red food coloring, optional, but not necessary
Stir this mixture until all the sugar is dissolved. (Audubon suggests that you boil the sugar to kill any bacteria. If you change the water every day, this is not necessary).
Allow solution to cool before filling feeders. This sugar water can spoil in hot weather, so change it often, at least two times a week or more. Store any excess nectar in the refrigerator.
So, have you had any good hummingbird sightings this summer? Share your best photos with us over on Big Mill Bed and Breakfast’s Facebook page .
And while you’re there, take a minute to write on our “Wall.”
innkeeper at Big Mil Bed & Breakfast 252-792-8787
Update: I turned on the video camera and caught about 10 minutes of wonderful action at the hummingbird feeder the other day. Check it out here if you could use a 10-minute nature retreat: