Provide for Pollinators!
Pollinators are important animals that have unique relationships with flowering plants. The flowers provide food in the form of sweet, sugary nectar and the pollinators transfer pollen between flowers so that they can make seeds. When we think of pollinators, most people think of bees first. However, pollinators can range from tiny insects to larger mammals such as the black and white ruffed lemur. Even birds and bats can pollinate flowers!
Reid Park Zoo has partnered with the Tucson chapter of the Audubon Society to build a native pollinator garden near the Conservation Learning Center. This garden will provide food and habitat to native pollinators such as hummingbirds, butterflies, and bees, and it will allow visitors the chance to view and enjoy these beautiful animals.
You too can help local pollinators, even if you don’t have the space to make your own garden! Hummingbird feeders can be made with simple household items. As long as you have a container with holes in the lid, some red decorations that will attract the birds, and sugar, you can attract hummingbirds to your yard. I used a mason jar, red pipe cleaners, and some red craft foam to make this simple hummingbird feeder with my kids.
To make hummingbird food, dissolve 1 part sugar with 4 parts water. Extra sugar water can be stored in the refrigerator for up to two weeks. For the health and safety of the hummingbirds, do not use red dye in the water, and be sure to change the water and clean the container every other day.
We would love to see what beautiful feeders you make! Please feel free to send pictures of your hummingbird feeders to [email protected].