Updated at: 11-08-2022 - By: Jane Brody

We’ll examine several potential solutions to the problem of hummingbirds being aggressive due to factors like the proximity of multiple feeders.

Separating hummingbird feeders by about a foot is fine for a few reasons. One thing you don’t want to do is make it harder for birds to get to feeders by limiting their access to perches or port wells that are too close together, but the distance that is needed to repel a bully is too great. Crashing feeders due to wind is a possible problem.

How Far Apart To Space Hummingbird Feeders (1)

It’s not the feeders themselves that you need to worry about when deciding how close a hummingbird feeder can be to another.

There may be no problems in the beginning or in the near future with having two or three hummingbird feeders spaced a foot apart on a three or four bracket bird feeder pole.

The most likely source of trouble is an aggressive hummingbird that claims exclusive use of a feeder and prevents other birds from getting any food.

In such a case, your only recourse is to move one or both of the hummingbird feeders to a far more distant position, preferably one where the two feeders are on separate poles.

Hanging a second hummingbird feeder from the soffit or guttering of a roof overhang is another good option.

For a minute straying from the matter at hand, remember that if you hang two hummingbird feeders side by side, it will be difficult to defend feeders against squirrels, thus it may be wise to keep them more than a foot apart if you do have a squirrel problem.

Finally, hummingbird feeders that are too close to one another may cause the birds to accidentally knock into one another.

Hummingbird feeders made of sturdy plastic may withstand rough use, while glass feeders would break under pressure.

And if you’re using a hummingbird feeder that has an ant moat, you know that if you have two feeders that bump against each other, the water in the moat will spill.

Minimum 1 foot distance

Hummingbird feeders need to be spaced around 2 feet apart to provide adequate space for the birds and prevent collisions.

Assuming there isn’t enough room for the hummingbirds to fly around, or if the hummers aren’t bothering each other (a dominant male hummer may chase away the females and any other males, but the females are more likely to dominate), hummingbird feeders can be moved closer.

Then you know that keeping at least a foot of space between your hummingbird feeders is ideal.

In contrast to hummingbird feeders, which can be spaced much farther apart, a distance of just one foot is required between bird feeders.

Maintaining a gap of at least one foot between hummingbird feeders helps prevent problems on windy days.

Hummingbirds will be able to use all of the well ports and perches provided as long as they are given a minimum of 1 foot to do so.

When you consider that most varieties of hummingbird feeders feature perches with adjacent port feeding wells, you can see why spacing your hanging feeders too closely together can be problematic, especially if your yard attracts a lot of hummers.

Rely on bird feeder pole setting

How Far Apart To Space Hummingbird Feeders (2)

It is sufficient to rely on the bracket spacing when using a convenient bird feeding station or Shepherd’s hook pole to hang feeders.

The poles for these bird feeders will allow for the 1-foot separation between feeders that I’ve recommended.

Using this tried and true method, I have settled on a foot as my unit of measure.

Hanging just two hummingbird feeders on opposing sides of a bird feeder pole will free up as much as 1.5 to 2.0 feet of space. The hummingbirds might get along better if you did that sooner rather than later.

Even if you don’t use a pole, you should leave at least a foot of space between your hummingbird feeders.

Keep your hummingbird feeders in a small group at first, and then, if you decide to expand your collection, you can spread them out.

The two feeders together are probably the maximum number of feeders needed to attract hummingbirds at any given time.

Keep in mind that hummingbird feeders can sit on the ground or in a tree, and that they don’t even need to be hung. In fact, if you have access to a suitable outside table, you can place a feeder there while leaving the original feeder suspended from the pole.

Remember that hummingbirds won’t eat from a shared feeder, so you’ll have to put your hummingbird feeder in a separate location from any other bird feeders you have, such as those filled with peanuts, suet, seeds, etc.

Space out if bully arrives

To ensure the safety of the hummingbirds, space the feeders at least a foot apart.

I want to forewarn you that at some point, a particularly aggressive hummingbird might show up and try to dominate the feeder. It’s more accurate to say he or she, as it’s normally the males who establish dominance at feeders.

This dominant bird can be discouraged by placing other feeders further apart or, even better, by moving one feeder to a different part of the yard.

Trying to get rid of this one persistent bully at the feeder will only result in the hummingbirds abandoning it altogether.

The situation is not hopeless if you have to take down one of your hummingbird feeders from a pole that holds two or more of them.

Hummingbird feeders don’t need to be hung at any specific height, so long as they are within reach. If you don’t have any suitable structures in your yard from which to suspend bird feeders, you could choose to make use of the space under the overhanging portion of your roof.

To solve this problem quickly, just suspend one feeder from the soffit, or better yet, use the gutter’s strongest point to suspend multiple feeders.

Target such hanging spots only if a bully shows up to disturb the serenity; otherwise, a second bird feeder pole can be placed somewhere out of sight of the first to at least hide it from sight.

Avoid bumps or bruises

How Far Apart To Space Hummingbird Feeders

The hummingbird feeders themselves are the primary draw for these tiny birds, so it’s to your advantage to keep them near together.

On their daily quest for nectar, hummingbirds may make a quick stop in your yard. From the air, they may be able to detect suitable feeding sites.

For this reason, if hummingbirds ever come across a set of red hummingbird feeders, which they know to be a food source, they will certainly come down to explore.

Hummingbird feeders can be placed up to a foot apart, but they are best observed from above to determine the optimal distance.

The issue arises when hanging feeders are kept too closely together; this can cause the feeders to become damaged and pose a threat to the hummingbirds who visit them.

Because even a light breeze can cause hummingbird feeders to wobble and dance, it’s important to provide a spacing of at least a foot between them. Nonetheless, if a hummingbird isn’t paying attention, it could come in the line of a passing feeder and be injured or killed.

Feeders for hummingbirds tend to be quite sturdy and can withstand being repeatedly slammed into one another, but the birds themselves must avoid being crushed.

The safety of the hummers requires that you provide adequate distance between feeders. Avoiding collisions with feeders, which might injure hummingbirds, dictates the safest distances between them.

Summary

Hummingbird feeders have a one-foot minimum distance requirement to prevent injury to the little birds.

Because a hummingbird feeder has perches and port wells all around it, a one-foot extension is required at most. Hummingbirds will avoid feeding with their backs to another feeder, therefore placing feeders too close together will block off half of each feeder.

Hummingbirds aren’t likely to linger or perch between two feeders, so leaving that foot of space will at least be more enticing and won’t scare them away.

Since the brackets on a pole-mounted, multiple-bracket bird feeder are often spaced one foot apart, I’ve used that as the basis for my recommendation.

Plus, if only two hummingbird feeders are hanging from the pole, on opposing sides, you’ll have an extra 6-9 inches of clearance.

It’s significant because eventually a dominant hummingbird will show up and chase away any others that might try to visit his feeder. You’d have to give some thought to the feeding area’s layout if you wanted to add a feeder specifically designed to counteract the bullies’ antics.

You don’t want to block off access to port wells or its related perches between two feeders since (1) a bully could be a problem and (2) you want to use all accessible port wells in a very active backyard.

When hummingbird feeders are placed close together, it increases the area over which the birds may feed, making it easier to detect the little birds as they fly in and land.

Despite all this care, hummingbird feeders can still collide if they’re placed too closely together; therefore, the distance you pick is crucial to preventing injuries, as hummers aren’t aware of the risks.

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