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Hummingbirds drink at sapsucker wells on trees to a degree, but they are far more attracted by the insects that are also attracted to the sap wells.  In fact, in spring migration, sapsucker wells can be a major food source for early arriving hummingbirds.

With that said, I haven't heard of any reports of them feeding at the wells in fall.  The reports have all been of hummingbirds feeding at the wells in winter and early spring.  So, this is an interesting observation.  Thanks for reporting it!

Troy Gordon
Columbia, MO
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http://www.missouri.edu/~gordonm/banding.htm

-----Original message-----
Subject: Hummingbirds and sap
From: majka AT BIOCHEM.WUSTL.EDU
Date: Wed, 8 Oct 2003 11:17:19 -0500

Hummingbirds left my feeders maybe a week ago. I thought they are
ready to cross Gulf of Mexico by now. How surprised I was yesterday
to see them nearby, foraging on the sap.
I didn't know the Hummers abuse sapsuckers also on the way south.
Why is sap better then 20% sugar? Is it richer? Do the stacked  insects
in sap make a difference? Or maybe it just  tests better.

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