Keep hummingbird feeders clean to keep hummingbirds healthy.
image by juditu: morguefile.com
Once you have gone to the effort of purchasing and setting up the hummingbird feeders, it is imperative to take the next step and properly maintain the feeders. Due to warm outdoor temperatures, nectar will develop harmful bacteria if you do not replace it often and if you do not properly clean the feeder once per month.
Empty the feeder completely when you are ready to refill it and discard any remaining nectar.
Hold the feeder under hot running water and scrub the inside of the feeder with the bottle brush.
Inspect the feeder to make sure there is no mold or mildew developing on the feeder. Perform the monthly cleaning if you find mold on the feeder while refilling.
Soak the hummingbird feeder once per month in a bleach and water mixture. Mix 1/4 cup bleach and 1 gallon hot water in the bucket and soak the feeder for one hour. Remove the feeder from the mixture and scrub the feeder with the bottle brush.
Rinse it well with hot water, then refill the feeder with nectar.