The Birds and the Bees: Battling Bees at Hummingbird Feeders

Everyone knows about birds and bees as they are a part of our life and we interact with them almost every day. Even our parents and loved ones always talk about them because we must learn how to interact with them and in any way how we can prevent ourselves from hurting them.

We are pretty sure that you already know many things about birds and bees but there is less chance of knowing about the hummingbird.

Furthermore, you might not be aware of how birds and especially hummingbirds deal with the bees. In this article, we will be talking about hummingbirds and bees and how they deal with bees.

These birds must compete for their food and that is why they often must deal with the bees. Mostly, the hummingbirds attack the insects for their food. So, it is not at all surprising that they often must deal with the bees as well.

Keep Bees and Wasps Away with Red Sauce Feeders

Keep Bees and Wasps Away with Red Sauce Feeders

Now we will discuss one way to keep the bees and wasps away. We can use the saucer feeders that have long tongues, and the hummingbirds can reach the nectar in saucer feeders, but the insects cannot reach the nectar in saucer feeders.

Therefore, this is a plus point for the hummingbirds to keep themselves away from these insects. Furthermore, the hummingbirds are merely attracted to the red color, and the bees are mostly attracted to the yellow color.

Therefore, the bees are mostly found on the sunflowers and lily and any such bright colored flowers. You can also prepare your humming sugar water so that the hummingbird gets attracted to the water and bees keep themselves away from that solution.

This is one of the most popular ways to keep them away from each other. Many people often try this solution and have claimed that it has worked.

Hummingbird Feeder Pests

Next, come to the hummingbird feeder pests and we choose this one because it is irresistible for many types of insects. Bees and wasps find themselves uninvited guests but there are several other insects that get attracted to these nectars such as ants, praying mantis, and moths. The bees and wasps do not get attracted to sugar water and therefore it is one of the best possible ways to keep bees away from a hummingbird.

When there are many bugs that feed on the sugar water then the sugar water solution gets contaminated and becomes less attractive for the hummingbirds. There can also be a case when hundreds of insects can monopolize a feeder that will keep the hummingbirds away from the solution. Now, if we take additional precautions then we will be able to save these nectars for the birds as well.

Choose No-Insect Feeders

As you know that there are some types of hummingbird feeders that are not much friendly with insects and therefore, we must position the nectar in such a way that the insects cannot reach the nectar. As hummingbirds have long tongues, they can still reach the nectar without any trouble. If the insects could reach, there then there will be no space left for the hummingbirds.

We have several other feeder designs that include ants, moats, and bee guards that will keep the insects away from the nectar so that only the hummingbirds can reach the nectar. If these feeders do not include the guards, then it will be almost impossible for the hummingbirds to get these nectars.

Praying Mantis at Hummingbird Feeders

Though it is rare we have found many pieces of evidence that show that even the praying mantises attack the hummingbird feeders. Many experts have studied that the praying mantises sometimes attack the hummingbird feeders as well.

The mantises often look for a chance to get to the nectars and keep the hummingbirds away from them. Not only this but also, they always look for a chance to attack the hummingbirds as well.

However, it is also important to know that the praying mantis also often attacks the bees and the insects as well. This is a plus point for the hummingbirds as they are protected from insects and have enough food supply for themselves.

Along with this, you can also do relocating of the feeder that you are making to confuse them for the places where they attack. You can also use the same trick to confuse the praying mantis as well. This will save the hummingbird feeder from both.

Battle with Bugs

There is a huge conflict between bugs and hummingbirds, and this is a two-way struggle. There are plenty of birds and insects that are ready to fight with each other for their food. However, nectar is something that birds, as well as bugs, are ready to fight with each other. It is just a way of life or living for each of them and therefore it is now described as a circle for living.

More so, people always find the hummingbirds interesting and how they visit our bird feeders. Therefore, many people want them around their house so that they can watch them sitting and relaxing. So, if you will follow the tips and ideas that we have given for hummingbirds, you will find them near your house more often. Birds always follow the cycle of life for their food and hence they rely on each other for their living.

Avoid Yellow Feeders

Avoid Yellow Feeders

As of now, you must know that bees and insects are attractive towards yellow color. Therefore, they will mostly be found on bright and sunny flowers because they are bright yellow. Furthermore, they are less attractive towards the red color.

Therefore, you will never see these bees and wasps on the rose flower or any such flower which is red. This indicates that you should keep the color of your feeder red. As red color is less appealing to them, your feeders are less likely to be intervened. Therefore, people often choose red color for their bird feeders.

So, one thing that you will be needed to do is to avoid yellow and bright color feeders to keep the bees and wasps away from the bird feeders and give them the red color so that only the hummingbirds can find their space between them.

More so, if you have already purchased a feeder with yellow color then you can simply paint that area with red color to avoid the bees and wasps. This is the only way through which you can make sure that bees and wasps do not come near the bird feeder.

Keep the Feeder Clean

When birds feed then what happens is few drops of nectar fall onto the feeder. Now, if the feeder is not cleaned on a regular basis, then it will become a spot for the bees as well as for insects.

Therefore, it is often suggested that you should clean the feeder in such a way that there should not be a single drop of nectar, otherwise, you will see a bunch of bees and insects roaming around the feeder. It is almost impossible to keep them away from a feeder and therefore you should be taking care of these little things.

Every time when the feeder will be re-filled, you will have to take care that the feeder gets cleaned carefully and the feeding ports are removed and then placed after cleaning. More so, make sure to check if there is any leakage in the feeder through which the drops from the nectar can leak, you will be needed to seal those leaks, and only then you will be able to keep the bees and wasps away from the hummingbird feeders. In this way, keeping the feeder clean is also a way to keep the uninvited guests away.

Insect Traps

Next comes on our list are none other than insect traps. There are plenty of insect traps available on market and you can purchase any one of them and try capturing the insects that are trying to trespass through the feeder. There are commercial insect traps that are available to reduce the total population of uninvited guests in your backyard. But there is one thing that you need to keep in mind, and that is you need to remove these traps as soon as the feeder is safe and no longer be troubled.

More so, you need to choose only those traps that target those insects that create more problems for the hummingbirds and not every type of insect. Not every insect in your backyard is harmful to the hummingbird feeders but there is a separate class of insects and wasps that look for the hummingbird feeders. So, this is also a good way to keep the insects away from the hummingbird feeder.

Hang Feeders Carefully

Another thing that can prevent your hummingbird feeder from insects and bees is to keep the feeder in a position so that the insects, bees, ants, and wasps do not reach the feeder. For this, you will be needed to hand the feeder in such a way that they do not reach the feeder.

For example, hang the feeder on a tree branch so that the ants and the insects cannot reach the feeder. It is quite difficult to position the feeder in such a way that the bees cannot reach the feeder as they are flying insects and can reach anywhere. So, it is better if you focus on the insects and keep them away from the hummingbird feeders.

Avoid Other Attractions

Now, one of the most important things is to avoid any other type of attraction that can create a danger for the feeder. There are many such insects and bees that are naturally attracted to the trees, plants, and fruits that are there in your garden.

So, this is also important that you do something to keep these insects and bees away from your garden, otherwise, they will also get attracted to the feeder. More insects more will be the problem while keeping them away from the feeder.

Furthermore, for a healthy garden, it is always recommended that the garden should be protected from insects and bees as they are more likely to damage the trees, plants, and fruits that are there in the garden.

Along with this, there is also a need to keep the garden clean so that there is no trash and manure that will attract insects and bees. This is also a nice way of keeping these wasps and bees away from the garden. This is how people keep them away from the hummingbird feeder.

What Not to Do?

There are many such things that are not needed to be done from our side to keep the insects and bees away from the feeder. For example, the very first thing is that we should never kill them.

They are also living beings and we should not kill them for our benefit. We should only keep them away from the feeder in such a way that there should not be any effect on their living. Therefore, we will never use pesticides and harmful fertilizers.


We are recommended to keep the bees and wasps away from our feeder and we have discussed several ways of keeping them away without providing any kind of damage to them.

So, please keep in mind that we will not use any kind of fertilizer and pesticide that will be injurious for them.

More so, you should also neglect the use of oil in your garden because oil is also dangerous for ants.

So, overall, you should only use legitimate methods of keeping insects away from the feeder.

Aaliyah Martinez

Aaliyah Martinez is an expert environmental journalist with a B.S. in Biology from Stanford University. Her journey began as a field researcher, where she developed a deep appreciation for biodiversity. Her insights stem from extensive fieldwork across various continents. Her love for the outdoors translates into her hobbies, which include hiking and volunteering for wildlife rehabilitation centers. She is also a great birdwatcher and nature photographer, capturing the beauty of wildlife in her travels.

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