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Bees and hummingbird feeders

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Pateab
Joined: 3/29/2002
Location: Reading
Posts: 35
Posted: Aug/07/2006 11:12 AM PST

I haven't had this problem to this magnitude ever! The last two times I changed the necter, we have had tons of bees swarming the feeders. We actually took two down that were closer to the deck yesterday because of the bees. Can anyone tell me why this is happening or better yet something to do to prevent this from happening. The hummingbirds can't even get to the feeders to feed. Thanks
maggieevans photos
Joined: 8/23/2002
Location: Cross Plains,Tn. zone 6
Posts: 1542
Posted: Aug/07/2006 10:29 PM PST

I use baby oil on my feeders to keep the ants and wasp away. I haven't had a problem with bees but it might work on them to.
Tammie
Joined: 3/08/2006
Location: Ontario, Canada ... Zone 2a - 3b
Posts: 325
Posted: Aug/07/2006 11:50 PM PST

Maybe this will help you.

http://www.hummingbirds.net/feeders.html#bees
Herbyann
Joined: 3/29/2002
Location: Sunny So. Calif. Zone 10
Posts: 3490
Posted: Aug/08/2006 4:06 AM PST

Great site Tammie. I'm bookmarking that one!!
brassi
Joined: 7/26/2004
Location: New Jersey
Posts: 344
Posted: Aug/08/2006 11:37 AM PST

I have used a Avon product called Skin So SOft. I wipe it on the outside of the feeder. The bees and ants seem to stay away from the feeder with the product on it. I also find when the syrup starts getting old is when it really attracts the bees, so I change it often.
Tammie
Joined: 3/08/2006
Location: Ontario, Canada ... Zone 2a - 3b
Posts: 325
Posted: Aug/08/2006 12:26 PM PST

Just please, please be careful where you are putting oils and such. If a hummer happens to come in contact with it in any way, it could be fatal for the bird. They can't fly with oily feathers.
Pateab
Joined: 3/29/2002
Location: Reading
Posts: 35
Posted: Aug/08/2006 6:20 PM PST

Thank you for the suggestions and the article. I will try moving the two feeders just a few feet and have my hubby spray paint the cups red. the hummers will probably like that better anyway.
brassi
Joined: 7/26/2004
Location: New Jersey
Posts: 344
Posted: Aug/10/2006 12:58 PM PST

I 'm sorry I was not clearer about my application of S.S.S. I apply it with the tip of a Q-tip that has been very lightly dipped into the S.S.S. and gently rub on the bulb of the feeder. DO NOt apply to the perch or necture vessel openings.
It seems all over the USA the bees and wasps have been taking over hummingbird feeders. At the Master Gardener office we have been getting oodles of calls about this issue and have gotten expert advise on just this, topic just this week from both Cornell and Rutgers. They seems to believe there are many factors of why these little critters are acting this way.
But the best info that was given was *Maybe next year this will not be happening*. Just keep the feeders with frest necture and keep them clean!
Tammie
Joined: 3/08/2006
Location: Ontario, Canada ... Zone 2a - 3b
Posts: 325
Posted: Aug/10/2006 1:43 PM PST

And that's the very best advice, right there!

Quote:
Originally posted by brassi
Just keep the feeders with frest necture and keep them clean!
Pateab
Joined: 3/29/2002
Location: Reading
Posts: 35
Posted: Aug/10/2006 4:03 PM PST

We tried the above suggestions with no good results. Bees are still EVERYWHERE!!
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