The birds and the bees….and it’s not what you think!

I really love watching my hummingbirds feed as I sit on my back patio. (Fabulous photo by my good friend Louise) I’ve been gone for a few weeks and was surprised when I got back to see that the bees and wasps have over took my hummer feeders.  A farmer down the road from us has moved bee hives onto his property.  Don’t get me wrong, I love honey, but I don’t like bees scaring off my hummers.

bees bugging hummers

After a few days of watching, I noticed the birds might get close to the feeder, but would not land to feed if the bees or wasps were there.  A quick google told me that not only would the wasps and bees chase off hummingbirds, but they can sting and even kill them.  If this is true, it’s serious.

I discovered  that wasps are attracted to the color yellow.  Darn, cause my favorite feeder is a pretty little yellow one my husband brought home from a trip to the hardware store.  Some sites suggested making the bees and wasps their own feeder with a stronger sugar- water ratio and put it in something yellow.  The idea behind this seemed sound enough.  If I could draw the stinging varmints away from my hummers  we could all co exist peacefully.  My first attempt failed

I took out the little feeding spouts making the holes bigger, but the bees all crawled inside and drowned.  After replacing the spouts, I had some success, but then I needed a bee suit to replace the sugar-water.  Also, it attracted the bees, but I was still fighting the wasps at the hummer feeders!

While studying the situation and what to do, a wasp snuck up behind me and stung me on the back of my leg!  Man, those stings hurt!  No more Mrs. Nice Gal.I have removed all hummingbird feeders with any yellow on them.  I also removed the feeders with loose ports that leak any water.  That leaves me with only two out of the six feeders I was using.  I’ll give this a try for a week while my wasp sting heals:)

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