|Jim caught this little hummer having breakfast earlier this summer|
I see the little ruby throated hummers, both the male with his red collar and the plainer female, at the feeder many times a day, all day long, but I was amazed at how much they were consuming this summer.
In other years they fed often, but the sugar water lasted a week or more. I would refill it every 5 days to freshen it, but the feeder was never empty when I did.
Why were they consuming so much this year?
Then I saw the culprit. A downy woodpecker has been monopolizing the sugar feeder.
|Look what my neighbor caught one recent morning|
This picture was taken by my neighbor at her feeder next door. I suspect the woodpecker that she caught on camera is the very same one that is draining my feeder.
How does he even get at the sugar water? My neighbor's feeder and mine both have the yellow plastic baffles that only allow the tiny, long tongue of a hummingbird to get in there. I usually flap about and scare the big fat woodpecker away when I see him, so I haven't studied how he gets at the sugar water.
Have you seen woodpeckers feed at hummingbird stations before?
What a thief.