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Portland Hummingbirds

Portland Hummingbirds:  Portland, Oregon has several different species of Hummingbirds.  The Anna's Hummingbird is found within Portland city limits and all over her neighborhoods.  Though tiny when compared to other birds, the Anna's Hummingbird is a giant by hummingbird standards. Anna's is a year round resident in Oregon and does not migrate like other birds.  Non-migrating hummingbirds are larger than other hummingbirds.  The Portland Anna's Hummingbird is a frequent visitor to gardens and feeders all over the Portland area.  The Rufous Hummingbird is also very common in all parts of Oregon.

Hummingbirds in Oregon

Rufous Hummingbird
Anna's Hummingbird
Calliope Hummingbird
Costa's Hummingbird
Allen's Hummingbird
Broad-tailed Hummingbird
Broad-billed Hummingbird
Black-chinned Hummingbird


Tips on Feeding Hummingbirds

Hummingbirds do not hibernate and need food sources all year long especially during the cold Oregon winters.  Consider placing a hummingbird feeder out for your local hummingbirds in addition to planting the hummingbird's favorite plants in your garden. 

With wings flapping on average of 53 times per second, hummingbirds have to expend a lot of energy to find -and to eat- food.  Consider finding a hummingbird feeder with perches so the hummer can rest while he eats.  I have several feeders in my garden and noticed that they took an immediate preference to the feeder with perches.

You can make your own food or buy prepackaged hummingbird food at local stores.  Never use honey, jello, molasses, brown sugar or fruit as a food source as it can kill Hummingbirds and do not use red food coloring to attract hummingbirds.  It is a fact they are attracted to the color red but you only need to find a feeder with red color on the exterior. There is evidence that suggests food coloring agents can cause tumors in birds and while not not scientifically proven, we do know that adding the red coloring to the solution is not necessary to attract the birds, so why risk it? 

Make your own Hummingbird nectar.  Its quick and easy.  Here's how:  Use one part ordinary white cane sugar to four parts tap water.  Mix well.  You do not have to boil the water.  Store unused syrup in the refrigerator for up to two weeks. 

Keep the feeder safe and healthy by cleaning it twice a week and providing fresh food.  Flush with hot water when replacing fluid (do not use soap) and clean with bleach or vinegar once a month, scrubbing and rinsing very well as you go. 

Other considerations to make your Portland hummingbirds happy:

  1. Make sure your feeders are high enough up so the neighborhood cat can't attack the hummingbird.
  2. Hummingbirds need fresh water. I often find them drinking from the fountain in the pond. I hang a bird bath and replace the water every 2-3 days. All of the birds love it.
  3. Consider placing more than one feeder out - you'll be surprised to discover you might have more than one hummingbird even though they are territorial.
  4. I see our Portland hummingbirds in my very urban front and back yard every single day- many times a day- during the months of October - March. They are definitely around during the other months, just not hitting the feeders as frequently due to more access to food sources during spring and summer.


Plant a Portland Hummingbird Garden and feed your sweet pollinators year round

Portland Hummingbirds seek out nectar rich flowering plants with bright red and/or orange tubular-shaped blossoms. Thoughtful planting of shrubs and trees that will bloom from spring to fall will give your Hummingbirds a continued and much needed food source across the seasons.

Spring and early summer plants: Bleeding heart, columbine, fuchsia, lupine, petunias, phlox and sweet William. Into late summer and Fall, Hummingbirds feed on bee balm, butterfly bush (Buddleia), dahlia, hollyhock, four-o-clock, zinnia, cardinal flower, beard tongue (penstemon), scarlet gilia and sage (salvia) to name a few.

Flowering shrubs: Portland Hummingbirds feed on include azaleas, wild Indian plum, red elderberry, red flowering current and flowering quince. Hummingbirds also feed on the nectar of Hawthorne, horse chestnut and flowering crabapple trees. Vines they prefer include twin berry, morning glory, clematis, trumpet creeper, honeysuckle and scarlet runner bean.  

Reference source:  Oregon State University

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