(taken in our backyard)
Sitting in the tree in our backyard
Hummingbird visiting our Hong Kong Orchid Tree
Hummingbird at Aloe plant (taken in Phoenix)
same hummer at Aloe plant
Hummingbird sitting on her nest. (taken in Tucson)
Hummingbird visiting the backyard Salvia and Penstemmon, his wings are so fast you can't even see them in the photo.
Are you looking to attract hummingbirds to your garden in your Arizona yard? Lucky you because Arizona is home to 16 species of hummers. Most of them live in Southeastern Arizona. Hummingbirds are the smallest birds in the world measuring a mere 2-8" and and some species weighing less than an ounce.
In Portugese hummingbird means "flower kisser." If you're looking to attract these tiny flower kisser's you'll need to create a welcoming habitat.
A combination of some or all of these plants are a sure bet to attract the hummers to your Phoenix Arizona garden:
Salvia Greggii | Pentas| Penstemmon|Bee Balm| Mexican Bush Sage | Agastache| Pentunia| Aloe | Firecracker Bush | Desert Honeysuckle | Mexican Flame Vine | Chuperosa| Red Bird of Paradise|Hong Kong Orchid Tree
Create A Hummingbird Habitat in your Garden:
Hummingbirds have a notoriously high wing-beat rate. This fast motion is what generates the "hum" for which the hummingbird is named. The largest hummingbird has an average wing-beat rate of 8-10 beats per second, while the smallest hummingbirds have an average wing-beat rate of 80 beats per second. Interestingly, they are the only bird able to fly backwards.
Each day, a hummingbird consumes more than the equivalent of their own body weight in nectar. This high sugar intake results in a very high metabolism rate. In fact hummingbirds have the highest metabolism rate in all of the animal kingdom with the exception of insects.
To maintain this metabolic rate the average hummingbird will visit 100 flowers each day looking for nectar. They seek out not just any flowers, but those that give them a 25% sugar content in the nectar. Hummingbirds meet their needs for protein and minerals by preying on insects and spiders.
If you want to attract hummingbirds to your garden you must provide them the flowers that they desire.
Hummingbirds tend to pollinate red, bright pink and orange tubular shaped flowers.
To encourage hummers to return every season you may need to supplement feeding with a hummingbird feeder. Studies have shown that the best hummingbird formula is 1 cup of white sugar to 4 cups of water. To mimic nature you are providing a 25% sugar to water solution. Putting red dye in your water is not necessary and can harm the hummingbirds. Be sure to empty and wash out the feeder at least once a week during the winter and more often during the summer months. A baby bottle brush cleaner can be helpful in this regard.
With an attractive and welcoming hummingbird garden you will be able to view these incredible small birds year round.
While a feeder and one or two plants may attract a hummingbird, to invite him or her to keep coming back it is best to create a habitat of flowering plants. This not only provides a home for insects that hummingbirds need for protein, but also to provide enough sugar to sustain a hummingbird's daily intake. These little guys need a lot of sugar to keep up their metabolism and are competing with bees and other wildlife to survive.
We've spent the last few years creating a welcoming habitat for the hummers and have attracted three regulars to our yard. Early morning and Early evenings are the best time of day for us to view them. They seem to have very little fear of us and often sit on the tomatoe cages just grooming or resting on a tree branch.
The most commonly seen hummingbirds in the low desert of Phoenix, Arizona include:
Anna's Hummingbird, Black Chinned hummingbird, Costas Hummingbird,
We personally see the Anna's Hummingbird year round in our yard.
Another good spot to view Hummingbird's is at the Desert Botanical Gardens in Phoenix.
Southeastern Arizona has some of the best hummingbird sightings in the US. Usually in the month of August you can see 14 species of hummingbirds, most of which you won't find in other parts of the United States. Great Spots to View Hummingbirds in Southeastern Arizona Includes:
Madera Canyon| Ramsey Canyon| Portal Peak Lodge| Patagonia/Sonoita Creek Preserve| San Pedro Riparian Conservation Area
If you don't have time to visit the canyons mentioned above, The Desert Botanical Gardens in Phoenix and the Sonoran Desert Museum in Tucson are great places to spot your favorite hummers.
If you're quiet you can hear them before you'll see them.
You may also be interested in Butterfly Gardens or more Photos of Hummingbirds