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Honored Contributor
Posts: 11,716
Registered: ‎03-10-2010

What do you think about brown sugar for hummingbirds?

We are 30 miles from stores.  I ran out of white sugar a couple days ago and substituted brown sugar in our two feeders.  Same sugar/water ratio of 4 to 1.  Well, they loved it, much more activity than normal.  Now we are back to white sugar and they have calmed down.  I've never put dye in my syrup, so I'm hoping whatever makes brown sugar brown didn't hurt them. 

Esteemed Contributor
Posts: 6,722
Registered: ‎03-09-2010

Re: What do you think about brown sugar for hummingbirds?

Brown sugar contains molasses which is high is iron.  Too much iron can hurt hummingbirds.  Stick with cane sugar and water.

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Respected Contributor
Posts: 3,083
Registered: ‎03-10-2010

Re: What do you think about brown sugar for hummingbirds?

I'm not an expert, but I don't think it should be a problem.  The difference between brown sugar and white sugar is that brown sugar has molasses.  Molasses is a dark, sweet, syrupy byproduct made during the extraction of sugars from sugarcane and sugar beets.  It's richer in flavor that white sugar.  Should be safe for the hummingbirds, and quite a treat for them and you!

Super Contributor
Posts: 381
Registered: ‎12-24-2010

Re: What do you think about brown sugar for hummingbirds?

6DD9A442-CC65-41F2-8300-1C58B6FA4B66.jpegI googled it because I was curious too .... answer is NO - do not use brown sugar

 

Respected Contributor
Posts: 3,083
Registered: ‎03-10-2010

Re: What do you think about brown sugar for hummingbirds?

[ Edited ]

Okay, @Marp & @simplyfriends.... you sound like you know a lot more than I do!  Have go keep the birds healthy and safe!  Thanks for your reply.

Trusted Contributor
Posts: 1,747
Registered: ‎03-10-2010

Re: What do you think about brown sugar for hummingbirds?

The instructions that came with our feeder say to only use white sugar, and white cane sugar is recommended.

Esteemed Contributor
Posts: 6,575
Registered: ‎06-10-2015

Re: What do you think about brown sugar for hummingbirds?

Thanks for googling the information.  I hope the OP sees this.  Again to much wrong info and it can do harm to wild life and humans.

 

@simplyfriends

The only thing that stays the same is that everything changes.
Esteemed Contributor
Posts: 5,999
Registered: ‎03-10-2010

Re: What do you think about brown sugar for hummingbirds?

PLEASE do not use anything other than white sugar when making hummingbird food. 

Honored Contributor
Posts: 15,951
Registered: ‎03-10-2010

Re: What do you think about brown sugar for hummingbirds?


@simplyfriends wrote:

6DD9A442-CC65-41F2-8300-1C58B6FA4B66.jpegI googled it because I was curious too .... answer is NO - do not use brown sugar

 


 

 

@depglass  Wanted to make sure you saw this.


Day after day the whole day through, wherever my road inclined, four feet said 'I'm coming with you!' and trotted along behind. Kipling





Respected Contributor
Posts: 3,088
Registered: ‎03-11-2010

Re: What do you think about brown sugar for hummingbirds?

NO!!!