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Hummingbirds and Insecticides and maybe Fertilizers

April 19 2017 at 2:29 PM
Douglas  (Login DouglasE)
Hummingbird lover 2013

The Western Hummingbird Partnership just forwarded this info to me and I am doing the same.

http://www.westernhummingbird.org/index.php?page=hummingbirds-and-insecticides&utm_source=April+2017+&utm_campaign=April+Newsletter+2017&utm_medium=email

Please be cognizant about what chemicals you are using on your flowers. What goes into the soil may be present in the nectar.


    
This message has been edited by DouglasE on Apr 20, 2017 12:50 PM


 
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Ron
(Login RonDEZone7a)
Hummingbirder 2008

Re: Hummingbirds and Insecticides and maybe Fertilizers

April 22 2017, 5:59 PM 

I don't use any pesticides around my hummingbird plants - or in my lawn, for that matter. I let nature take it's course. I do fertilize a little and will read that document for advice on that.
Wilmington, Delaware
USDA zone 7a
Heat zone 6
Sunset zone 32
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Indy Steve
(Login SteveWnindy)
Hummingbird lover 2007

Re: Hummingbirds and Insecticides and maybe Fertilizers

April 22 2017, 9:05 PM 

I dont use any chemicals either . About 3 yrs ago I started changing to being as organic as I can using compost and worm castings. The only spray I use is neem oil for aphids and it is supposedly organic and I dont use it often usually just a jet spray of water, just depends.
Steve
Martinsville In.
Zone 6

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Kathi and Michael Rock
(Login kathirock)
Hummingbird Member 2006

Re: Hummingbirds and Insecticides and maybe Fertilizers

April 22 2017, 10:08 PM 

We don't use any insecticides in our yard at all, as these could pose dangers for hummingbirds and other wildlife.

However, we do use a "Bloom Booster" fertilizer because we struggle getting tender plants to bloom here with our cool summers and fertile soil (which encourages leaf growth, but not flower development.) We have been doing this for years and our hummingbirds have been fine.

Additionally, we feel that insecticide use kills all of the small, gnat-like insects that hummingbirds depend on for survival.

We certainly reinforce these concepts in our "Gardening for Hummingbirds" program as well.
Michael and Kathi Rock
Madison, WI
Zone 5

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This message has been edited by kathirock on Apr 22, 2017 10:12 PM


 
 

Ron
(Login RonDEZone7a)
Hummingbirder 2008

Re: Hummingbirds and Insecticides and maybe Fertilizers

April 23 2017, 8:06 AM 

Great minds think alike! I do a 1-hour workshop on "Attracting Hummingbirds", for master gardener volunteer requirements and I also recommend using no pesticides in a hummingbird/pollinator gardens. And I do mention using a shot of "Bloom Booster" type fertilizers, as an option for a late summer feeding (along with some pruning / dead-heading), to get a (Labor Day time frame) re-bloom in time for migration.

BTW, I got my first visitor to my hummingbird feeder... an American Goldfinch, coming to use the ant moat! But no hummer seen yet... (I think my earliest has been April 25)
Wilmington, Delaware
USDA zone 7a
Heat zone 6
Sunset zone 32
[linked image]

 
 
Farmer Steve
(Login avorancher)
Hummingbird Member 2006

Re: Hummingbirds and Insecticides and maybe Fertilizers

April 25 2017, 12:08 PM 

Don't assume that everything organic is safe.... nor that non-organic is always harmful. I don't know why we have been conditioned to think this way... perhaps marketing. "Organic" and "chemical" are different things... not opposite things.
**********
Farmer Steve
Deluz, CA usda zone 10a (between LA and San Diego)
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Burke
(Login Bayoulife10)
Hummingbird Lover 2014

Re: Hummingbirds and Insecticides and maybe Fertilizers

April 25 2017, 12:56 PM 

I too use bloom boost for a lot of my flowers. This year I started using fish emulsion as well, especially for my veges.
Burke Baker
Santa Rosa Beach, FL
USDA zone 9A

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Joe M.
(Login flhummer)
Hummingbirder 2012

Re: Hummingbirds and Insecticides and maybe Fertilizers

April 25 2017, 4:51 PM 

Every Hummingbird friendly gardener that uses insecticides or pesticides on flowering plants should be aware of the possible dangers to the hummers.
I don't allow any in my yard but I even have misgivings about the possible affects of soap sprays, which I use.

Lisa Tells studies may be of interest but I'm not sure what else her study has provided other than the "presence of insecticides".

It would be nice if the study provided some in depth range of values observed and if they fall in the range of values of concern.
I wouldn't make much of her study but wonder how she found "internal" evidence? Was an necropsy performed?

We have learned over the years that insecticides can be harmful to just about every living organism but Lisa Tells study does not show that it is harmful to hummingbirds. Before I get too upset and agitated I would suggest we get more information and refrain from using insecticides anywhere in the areas that our hummers frequent, especially their favorite flowers!
Joe M.
Lakeland, FL

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Ward
(Login WardDas)
Hummingbird Moderator 2005

Re: Hummingbirds and Insecticides and maybe Fertilizers

April 25 2017, 6:47 PM 

Do we really know if any of these substances actually harm hummingbirds? There are probably other creatures for whom the risk is likely greater. We can't change the world but we can keep these thing in mind when it comes to us. The risks don't seem worth it. Our job as gardens is to decide what works where we are, get the garden planted and keep the weeds down. The rest is up to the plants. Bugs be damned.

 
 
 
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