If you love to feed hummingbirds in your backyard, or just love to watch them visit your flowers, you might be thinking about adding a bird bath for them. Hummingbirds won’t use just any type of bird bath though! In this article we looked for the best bird baths for hummingbirds and also picked out a variety of water features that will be attractive to hummingbirds.
Best Bird Baths for Hummingbirds
In general, hummingbirds are going to be looking for water that is moving, and shallow. They like to fly through showering water, or dip down into a gently bubbling fountain. In order for them to land and splash around, the water needs to be very shallow. I recommend a maximum of 1.5 centimeters, and the shallower the better!
With those criteria in mind, let’s take a look at some of the best bird baths for hummingbirds!
This vase shaped fountain is a great design for hummingbirds! The water comes up through the center in a very gentle stream, falls into an extremely shallow basin and then cascades in a thin sheet over the side. The gentle water movement plus shallow depth of the water make this very hummingbird friendly.
Multiple reviewers on Amazon have success attracting hummingbirds with this. There is even a video from one customer who has a hummingbird that visits daily. Comes in a few colors, and an LED lights it up at night. The hummingbirds will be asleep, but you might enjoy the added ambiance!
This tiered resin fountain (plastic, not metal) is a popular one on Amazon, both for its design and affordability. The multiple levels give birds lots of choices for where they want to sit, and also provides a lot of cascading and dripping water.
Hummingbirds would enjoy both the dripping water, the gentle central water source at the top, and the small shallow bathing areas. You can add a few medium sized stones to any of the tiers to make the water even shallower and more hummingbird friendly. Many of the reviewers have said the hummingbirds in their yard enjoy using this fountain.
I’ve seen a few videos of people with a large stone ball shaped fountains and the hummingbirds loved it. They were dipping into and drinking from the bubbling center piece as well as gripping onto the sphere and rolling around on the thin stream of water. That was the inspiration behind this choice of the John Timberland Sphere Fountain.
It might not particularly look like a bird bath, but it has a lot of qualities that hummingbirds gravitate towards. There are a few different designs in the series with the large sphere as the top piece that bubbles the water, and I think any of them would work as a hummingbird fountain. This is resin, not stone, so make sure it is secured to the ground.
The final fountain on my list is a typical tiered fountain but with a square design. The top piece is what makes me think this would work well for hummingbirds. Because of the square shape, it provides a shallow platform for them to land on and roll around in with plenty of space. Larger birds would also enjoy this and can use the basin at the base of the pyramid to splash around in or perch along the top tier and drink from the bubbler.
Best Hummingbird Bath Fountains
In this category are small fountains that you can add to almost any water feature you might already have such as a pedestal bird bath, table top water basin, garden pond, etc. They are very versatile and can add the showering or bubbling water effect that will get hummingbirds interested. A great less expensive way to try out fountains in your yard. Let’s look at some top choices.
This floating solar fountain is a great and simple way to create some spray for hummingbirds to fly through. Let it float freely, or surround it with some stones if you want it to stay in a certain spot. The sound of moving water attracts almost all birds, so the other birds in your yard will like it too.
The solar feature means no cords to deal with, just set it in the water and you’re done. This needs sun to work, so not a good solution for a very shady spot. However it does include a battery that stores some solar energy to help keep the fountain working on partly cloudy days.
If you don’t think solar will work for you, you can also buy submersible pumps with power cords. This will ensure uninterrupted water flow. Create an easy water bubbling effect in your bird bath by surrounding the nozzle of this pump with some large stones. This pump boasts great customer reviews and has some really nice features.
You can adjust the pump power to get the flow you want. If you should need more power for a larger fountain idea, this pump comes in several varieties of increasing strength. This pump is made to run quieter than others (lets you hear the relaxing splash of the water better) and will shut off if the pump gets too hot from low water level.
This Bird Choice Granite Bubbler is a submersible pump with the look of a bubbling rock fountain built right in. This will add some movement to your bird bath, as well as shallow water cascading over a rough surface that hummingbirds like.
They can dip down and drink from the bubblers or land and enjoy the gentle flow of the water. A cool piece with an “inspired by nature” look. A few of the reviewers on Amazon said their hummingbirds enjoy this piece. Use on its own or dress it up with more stones.
Best Hummingbird Misters
Hummingbirds love to fly through water, get nice and wet, then sit and preen. A great way to provide this type of water for your hummers is by using a mister. A mister is a hose or a tube with an end piece that funnels the water through very small openings, creating a super fine mist. You can get creative positioning your misters. Perhaps spraying over a larger bird bath, above some plants, off a pergola or deck roof, or string along a tree branch.
Check out a video of this hummingbird enjoying a mist bath!
BONUS: HANGING DISH BIRD BATH
This style is a little more hit or miss but a lot of people try these out for hummers so I thought I would mention it here. Pictured is the MUMTOP Outdoor Glass 11 Inch Bowl. It comes in a variety of colors and patterns. I like this one in particular because it is made of glass and reviewers are saying the colors don’t peel or flake off.
Many of these dishes are brightly colored which could attract the hummingbirds. Also the dish is shallow enough that they may feel comfortable bathing, or at least sitting on the rim and drinking. You could add a few stones in it to make it even more shallow.
You may even be able to add a floating solar fountain. Hanging this near your hummingbird feeders will make sure they spot it. Its small size will make it easy to take down and clean, however it also means you will be refilling it daily during hot weather as the water evaporates.
Hey, if it doesn’t work out as a bird bath, throw some seed in it and use it as a feeder!
Hummingbirds do need to drink and bathe, they are just particular about where they do it. It may take trial and error to figure out what is going to work for your yard. But remember the important features of showering or bubbling water, and some flat shallow surfaces and you’ll be well on your way. If nothing here is catching your fancy, we have an article with some DIY hummingbird bath ideas of all types you should check out to make something custom both you and the birds enjoy.
Article feature image credit: twobears2/flickr/CC BY-SA 2.0