Tuesday, July 10, 2012

Honey Bees and My Hummingbird Feeders

I don't know what is going on with the bees this year, but they are taking over the hummingbird feeders.  AND they are all honey bees.  They swarm over the feeders every day covering the outside and climbing into the interior, where they cannot escape. When I cleaned out the feeder, I found over a hundred dead honey bees.  Now that is something I do not want to see happen!  Where  all the bees coming from?  Aren't they supposed to be pollinating and making honey for their queen? I've seen Bee Movie, I have a good idea of what they should be doing. Maybe they are escapees from someone's hive nearby.

The other big problem is that they are so thick that my hummingbird friends cannot force their way in.  There have been a lot of bee/bird wars at my feeders. Does anyone know what I can do about this problem?  Help! I need suggestions now!

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Randy Emmitt said...

Jane Marie,

I'm a beekeeper, though I do not claim to know everything about them. You might have a neighbor that keeps bees or a feral colony nearby. Hummingbird water is about the same as what we feed bees half water and half sugar. You might want to get a feeder that does not drown the bees. You could see if you can find the beekeeper nearby and get them to feed and take yours in a for a bit too.

I hate your word verification it is awful.

Ricky Johnson said...

Hi Jane. If the bees are drowning you can use an egg carton on the water. Check this in hot weather. article out about bees. Might be useful

RobinL said...

My first inclination is to get a new hummingbird feeder. Get a good one, like from Wild Birds Unlimited, they are experts in such things. The bees should not be able to get inside!

Jane Marie said...

Randy, thanks for the advice. Strangely, as of July 14th, the bees seemed to have gone except for a few and I usually have that anyway each year hovering around the feeders.

Jane Marie said...

Robin, the feeders I have from Perky Pet are great as far as preventing the bees from getting inside but they were swarming on the outside of the feeder. The feeder that they were drowning in, I realized, was my oriole feeder, which has larger holes for sipping. Now that the orioles are no longer drinking from it, I have taken it down.

Jane Marie said...

Ricky, great article. I never stopped to think that maybe they were seeking water. I'll give this a try. They might just use it instead of the hummer feeder! Thanks.