Saturday, May 7, 2011

Humming Along Just Fine

I've always hated birds. They scare me. I don't like them. They don't like me. So, it's only fitting that I have a kid who really, really likes them - a cruel trick from the gods, meant to soften me up to these feathered foes friends.
I now am the proud owner of a zebra finch (he's small and doesnt threaten me, as long as he's not flapping his wings) and several bird feeders. The latter of which are bringing quite a bit of joy to our house now that spring has arrived. I mean, I hate to say it. I have been a life long bird despiser. Alfred Hitchcock's The Birds is my ultimate nightmare. And once, when I was visiting Mexico City, I was attacked by pigeons. Attacked.
Anyway, my son loves watching the brilliantly colored hummingbirds that flock to our yard around this time of year. I can tolerate hummingbirds. They are like big bees - or so I tell myself. We made a trip to our local big buy store and were able to buy some reasonable priced feeders, but once I saw that the ready made food was more than a gallon of milk, I though there must be a way to make it at home. And, so there was. Check out this cool recipe courtesy of BirdWatching-Bliss.com. And, it makes for a great activity with the kids.
  1. Make sure your feeder is cleaned thoroughly before adding new solution.
  2. Boil 1 cup of water. (Moms only!)
  3. Stir 1/4 cup of white granulated sugar into the 1 cup of heated water.
  4. Stir until sugar dissolves.
  5. Cool, fill your hummingbird feeder, and add a few drops of colorful food coloring to attract the birds.
  6. Any leftover nectar can be stored in the refrigerator for 2 weeks.
Note that following the 1 to 4 ratio is the best method, as it most closely mocks the nectar found in real flowers.
For added fun, take a few pics of the birds, and create your own nature journal.
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