Updated at: 18-06-2023 - By: Jane Brody

Hummingbirds aren’t picky about whether they’re in the sun or the shade, but it’s vital to keep in mind that direct sunlight can ruin nectar.

The heat of the sun can swiftly ferment any nectar mixture within hours, which can discourage hummingbirds if the nectar becomes bad. Put the feeder in a shady, cool place where birds will continue to be attracted while yet having enough of room for the elusive hummingbirds to explore.

Where To Hang Hummingbird Feeder Sun Or Shade (1)

Keep an eye on the sun once you’ve located the perfect position for your hummingbird feeder in your yard so that you can escape the harsh rays throughout the middle of the day.

While exposure to some sunlight is generally beneficial, living in a perpetually hot and humid region can make even a modest amount of exposure to the sun a serious problem.

You should not go to any great lengths to ensure that your hummingbird feeders remain in the shade throughout the day; the birds will benefit greatly from having access to them regardless of their location.

A hummingbird feeder is best hung in the shadow on the side of a shed, garage, or the side of the house that receives the most shade.

Keeping hummingbirds safe requires following the necessary safety protocols, of course. If there are no pests in the area, hang the feeders from a sturdy bracket at a great height or from a tree that provides some shade.

Although hummingbird feeders in well-lit areas or in the bright sunlight may attract more visitors, even those located in the shadow will still attract visitors like this one.

The nectar in a hummingbird feeder can become bad if it is left in direct sunlight for an extended period of time, even though the hummingbirds continue to feed. In fact, you’ll soon observe that hummingbirds, even Orioles, shun the nectar.

If you don’t have any trees that provide shade in your yard, then the only thing I can suggest is that you fill the hummingbird feeders with new nectar once or twice a day.

By cleaning the outside of the feeder whenever you change the nectar, you can discourage bees from landing on the feeder and maintain its pristine appearance for the benefit of the birds that will use it, provided they are sheltered from the sun.

Feeders in both sun or shade

The reality is that most of us can’t put our hummingbird feeder in a spot where it will stay at the ideal temperature all day long.

In reality, most of us can split our time between the sun and the shade rather evenly.

If you put the feeder too close to the house or a fence, it won’t get any early morning sun and won’t get any late afternoon solar since the sun will be too low in the sky.

As a rule, this is only relevant from late spring to early summer, while the issue of too much sun is not likely to arise at any other time of year.

During the hottest part of the day, between late morning and mid afternoon, the sun can be dangerously hot, so make sure to position your hummingbird feeder in a shady area.

It is best to place your hummingbird feeder in a shady area, such as beneath a porch or off the branch of a large tree.

Favor shade over sunshine

Where To Hang Hummingbird Feeder Sun Or Shade (2)

You must take precautions to ensure that your handmade hummingbird nectar does not go bad in the plastic tube as a result of being exposed to the sun’s heat all day.

That’s why it’s crucial to put the feeder in a shady part of the backyard during the middle of the day, when the sun is at its highest.

Hanging the feeder on the side of a shed or garage that doesn’t get direct sunlight throughout the day is an ideal spot.

To keep hummingbirds from being eaten by cats or other predators, you’ll need to place your feeder in a spot that requires a little of creative thinking.

Place a hummingbird feeder on an outside table and watch the tiny birds from the shade, or try luring one into your hand for a close-up.

If the nectar is exposed to direct sunlight, it will ferment in a matter of hours, making it unfit for hummingbirds to feed on, and the birds will avoid the area.

This means that you should spend the most of the day in the shade, but exposure to indirect sunlight is generally tolerable.

Heat can spoil nectar

The sugary water mixture you make at home to attract hummingbirds simply ferments in the warm environment of your hummingbird feeder.

It is clear that fermentation has taken place in the nectar water because of the white mist texture and the presence of small bubbles.

Nectar fermentation happens when water used to make nectar is exposed to high temperatures for an extended period of time; this can happen within hours in the dead of summer.

Because of the nature of the hummingbird feeder’s construction, which often involves a plastic or glass tube, inside conditions may deteriorate as a result of condensation.

After this point, the nectar mixture is ruined and can only be remedied by replacing the water with fresh nectar water.

As a matter of fact, in much hotter, more humid areas, it may not be enough to avoid the direct heat of the sun all day, as humidity can allow nectar water to ferment even in a shaded spot.

Replace twice daily


Only in the shade is the nectar combination almost certain to stay longer, thus hummingbird feeders should be placed there if at all possible.

Even if you find some shade, even fresh nectar won’t last long because heat kills the bacteria that makes it taste good.

The solution is to refresh your homemade hummingbird nectar blend daily.

When you change out the nectar twice a day, you can provide fresh nectar all day long. In addition, wipe off the outside of the hummingbird feeder to eliminate any leftover debris.

Avoiding the sun entirely is impossible, in my opinion; hummingbirds need to eat from the time the sun rises until the time it sets.

Pick your time, and only refill or clean out the hummingbird feeder when there are no hummingbirds around or when the feeder is not in use.

Safety of hummingbirds

When trying to determine if a hummingbird feeder should be placed in the sun or shade, it’s easy to lose track of the birds’ well-being.

Although hummingbird feeders should ideally be placed high up to protect the tiny birds from larger predators, they can be placed at lower heights than one might think.

Finding a high point and staying there is, in my opinion, the ideal way to situate a hummingbird feeder to escape the heat and prefer more of the shade.

Hummingbird feeders should be hung from a bracket on a wall or given a perch on a bird feeding station for optimal placement.

Better still, to take advantage of the constant natural shade, hang a hummingbird feeder from a tree branch, but beware of predators or pests that may easily access a tree, like squirrels or raccoons.

Hummingbirds’ well-being should come first, thus it’s important to hang the feeder in a shady spot, but you shouldn’t move it around too much.

To summarize

Indeed, hummingbird feeders can be placed either in the sun, or more specifically, under direct sunlight, or in the shade.

Hummingbird nectar feeders should be stored at a cold temperature so that the nectar doesn’t ferment in the warm plastic tube.

In all likelihood, you won’t be able to stay out of the sun all day unless the feeder is just around the corner. Unfortunately, if you miss the hummingbirds at feeding time, even if the conditions are perfect, you will have missed out.

In order to keep the hummingbird feeder cool throughout the day, it should be placed near a house or other shaded object in the backyard.

Always choose the shade over the sun, as the nectar will be preserved for a longer period of time (up to a day) and will not go bad as quickly.

Nectar goes bad rapidly when exposed to heat, therefore it’s your responsibility to keep it from getting too warm or heated.

All of these problems can be prevented simply by refreshing the nectar once or twice daily.

If you’re trying to find a more shaded environment for hummingbirds, remember that safety first, and hang the feeder as high as you can.

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