Saturday, August 2, 2008

The Birds and the Bees

We've had a lot of hummingbirds this season - more than I thought we would have when the season started out! I make 8 cups of food a day. The problem has been that bald-faced hornets have been visiting the feeders also, chasing the hummingbirds and making it scary for us when we refill the bottles! We figure they have a nest nearby. BUT, I read on the internet that they will not bother you unless you bother their nest. So we tolerate them at the feeders - what else are we to do? I tried a technique that someone suggested - using a spray bottle filled with ice and ice water and spraying them. It was supposed to paralyze them and make them fall to the ground, then you could step on them. It kind of worked on one, but he didn't fall to the ground. He just went to the chimes and kind of stuck there. Then I kept spraying the others and finally they started to get MAD at me and chase me, so I gave up on that idea! In the first picture you can see one of the hornets and get an idea of how BIG they are!


  1. Wow, that is a big Hornet! Do you have bee-guards on the feeder? I bought a cheap feeder this year with them, and they really work. Had a lot of bees and wasps on feeder last year and they ran the Hummingbirds off, so I had to do something. Anna

  2. No, we don't have bee guards. I read that sometimes the hummers won't use the feeders with the bee guards, but it sounds like you didn't have a problem. Our hummers are staying and fighting it out with the bees. We notice that they also have to fight the bees at our trumpet vine, so I guess they are used to it. They fight the bees, they fight each other, the bees fight each other . . . it is a major battle out there!!