Feeding Hummingbirds without Ants

Don’t you hate it when you go out to your hummingbird or oriole feeder and find it full of ants? Most of the ants are dead and the nectar has spoiled and smells bad. Then back in the house, you always end up with a couple of live ants crawling around the sink as you try to clean the feeders.

There is a simple solution to this problem: water. Just like the castles of knights and kings, a moat is just what you need to stop the invading ants. Whether it is nectar, jelly, or fruit that needs protection, an ant moat will do the trick.

Some manufacturers, like Aspects and Classic Brands, are making their feeders with small, built in ant moats. If you already have a feeder that is moat-less, you can buy ant moats that hang between your hook and the feeder. Just fill the moat with water and the ants are stopped. You have to keep an eye on the smaller, built in moats, as the water evaporates quickly. If the moat goes dry, the ants will take advantage of the situation and get to the sweet treats.

Ant moats have worked magic on all my sweet feeders, but I could not put them on my window hummingbird feeders. Aspects has come up with a wonderful new window feeder with a moat. The nectar bowl sits in the center of the moat where the ants can’t get to it. They have two sizes, the 8 oz Jewel Box (moat included), and the 4 oz. Gem (moat sold separately). Whichever sweet feeder you have, an ant moat will work for you.

By Mark McKellar

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