Attract Hummingbirds: Prepare Now for the Fall Migration

Ruby-throated Hummingbird June 9th, 2008 Our house in Brandon, South Dakota Canon 20D, 400 5.6L


In mid-August, the Ruby-Throated Hummingbirds are back in our area for their fall migration! Since you can expect to see increasing numbers of them, stock your feeders and yard with plants to attract & fuel them for their long journey south!

Did you know there are over 16 kinds of hummingbirds in the U.S.?
Did you know the most prevalent is the Ruby-Throated Hummingbird, and it’s the most widely distributed of all the 338 world-wide hummingbird species? We hope you are as excited as us to celebrate them twice a year during their Spring & Fall migrations!

The main ways to attract them to your garden/landscape are to accommodate them with food and water.

An amazing fact is that a hummingbird that feeds in your yard one year will return to that food source every year! So, if you’ve seen them in your yard before, make sure to keep up your supply for them. If you don’t get as many or any, come over and let us help you change that for this season!

If you use nectar, it’s important to always keep it clean and fresh. Hummingbirds stay clear of fermented nectar, which supports deadly mold growth. Feeders should be cleaned at least once a week in our hot weather. This prevents harmful microorganisms from forming.

Summer Plants to Attract Hummingbirds

Want to appeal to hummingbirds? Consider these flowers they love to visit during their fall migration:
For further growing information on each one, come visit us! We’d love to tell you all about these, and send them home with you!

Bee Balm
Butterfly Bush
Canna Lily
Cardinal Flower
Cigar Plant

Compact Fire Bush
Flowering Tobacco


Hummingbird Fun Facts:

  • During their migrations, they fly 500 miles nonstop over the Gulf of Mexico! To make that journey, they need to weigh 1.5x their usual weight. Bring on the nectar!
  • Flying speeds can reach up to 60mph! They can fly forward, backward, up, down, upside down briefly, and even sideways! However, flying is their only mode of transport- they cannot walk.
  • Hummingbirds beat their wings 78 times per second! When diving, it more than triples to 200 times per second!
  • Their heart beat 1,260 times and they take about 250 breaths per minute.
  • Their tongues can reach out over 2-3’’! Perfect for trumpet-shaped flowers!
  • They live an average of 3-5 years.

For more migration information, visit here.