Plastic vs. Glass Hummingbird Feeders (Pros and Cons) | (2023)


Hummingbirds drink from both glass and plastic feeders.

Deciding on someone to buy one comes down to individual preferences and pros and cons. If a bird lover understands them, she can find the feeder that best suits her needs.

Glass and plastic feeders have advantages and disadvantages in terms of design, durability, and longevity. Glass tends to last longer and comes in stunning colors, but may have fewer openings or supports and plastic parts that break down over time. Plastic feeders come in a variety of styles, but they can warp and leak, requiring frequent replacement.

Plastic vs. Glass Hummingbird Feeders (Pros and Cons) | (1)

Ultimately, a hummingbird feeder should have features that make it easy for hummingbirds to consume sugared water.

These include features such as seats, mosquito nets, and feeding holes that are red, orange, or yellow.

Keep reading to know more.

Plastic vs. Glass Hummingbird Feeders (Pros and Cons) | (2)

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Plastic vs. Glass Hummingbird Feeders (Pros and Cons) | (3)

Pros and cons of plastic and glass hummingbird feeders

Plastic vs. Glass Hummingbird Feeders (Pros and Cons) | (4)

Hummingbird feeders are often made of glass and plastic. These materials will not corrode when exposed to sugar water and outdoor elements. In addition, they are durable and easy to clean.

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This table provides a brief overview of the pros and cons of plastic and glass hummingbird feeders. These are described in more detail later in this article.

Type of hummingbird feederAdvantagesDisadvantagesMixed
The plasticVariety of styles and sizes with many hangers and ports.discoloration

shorter shelf life

toxic BPA

Light weight (Pro) makes it prone to leaks or damage (Con)

Inexpensive (Pro), but replaced more frequently, resulting in higher cost over time (Con)

Glassimpressive appearance


Less design variety; fewer hangers and ports


Durability (pro) as a material but also has plastic parts and seals (against)

A closer look at plastic feeders.


variety of options

Plastic hummingbird feeders come in a variety of styles and sizes, holding nectar from a few to many ounces.

They may have seating bars, multiple openings, saucer bottoms, a top fill design for relief, or molded into other shapes.

This gives people many options for garden decoration andfunctional feeders.



Plastic vs. Glass Hummingbird Feeders (Pros and Cons) | (5)

Plastics can discolor andfadingover time, especially when exposed to ultraviolet light from the sun. A hummingbird feeder can be hung in partially shaded areas out of direct sunlight, but it can still fade.

However, if a feeding site is in constant shade, the hummingbird may not be able to recognize its colors and use it as a food source. (More on that below.)

Some plastics also tend to warp or crack with changes in temperature or repeated handling.

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This causes the feeding station to leak which shortens the food supply and also invites other animals such as bees, ants, raccoons or bears to the feeding station.


As plastic hummingbird feeders are more prone to leaking, discoloration and warping. They need to be replaced more often.

This can unexpectedly cause you to spend more than you planned.

Bisphenol-A (BPA)

Bisphenol A (BPA) is a reinforcing compound used in some plastics (polycarbonate and epoxy resins). This chemical can leach from plastic into food, water, and soil.

You often see "BPA free" labels on the plastics consumers use for food or water.

Somestudiesnote that this also affects animals, including birds. Not all hummingbird feeders are BPA free.

More information about the plastics used can be found on the feeder or manufacturer's label.

A pro and a con


Larger plastic feeders will be substantiallighterthan glasses of similar size.

This makes it easier to handle and allows you to hang it in more places, e.g. B. on a branch that doesn't bend as much as on a glass feeder.

Conversely, the lightweight nature of a plastic feeder makes it easier to rock or tilt. This can cause large amounts of sugar water to escape.


In general, plastic costs less than glass because it is plastic.less expensiveto produce.

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However, plastic feeders tend to have a short lifespan. As a result, more money can be spent maintaining and maintaining a plastic feeder in your yard over time.

A Closer Look at Glass Feeders



Glass feeders offer a wide range of colorful styles in blown orcut glass. This glass can shine and reflect, adding to the beauty of decorating and landscaping.


The heavier weight of a glass feeder keeps it stable when hanging from its pole. They are less likely to fluctuate a lot, reducing the chance of leaks.

When larger birds visit the feeding station, e.g. B. Orioles, escape less likely.



Glass feeders tend to have fewer design features compared to plastic ones. Glass can't be molded like plastic, so there might not be as many hangers or ports, for example.

As such, a hummingbird may need to hover and drink, making it difficult to observe.

This video shows a hummingbird feeding from a glass feeder that only has one perch:


If the glass hummingbird feeder is dropped or dropped on a hard surface, it is more likelyromper.

The feeder can be hung at eye level on a soft, grassy surface to reduce the effects of the feeder falling.

Care should also be taken not to drop it when refilling or cleaning it, as it can become slippery when wet.

A pro and a con


not glassChainor discolor like plastic. Therefore, it is less likely that it will need to be replaced over time.

However, hummingbird feeders may also have plastic parts and seals. These can warp, discolor or crack with use and exposure to the elements.

These plastic parts will need to be replaced or a new feeder with working parts purchased.

Some feeders have a glass bowl and a plastic rod and base that bolts to the floor. In this case, the plastic rod may need to be replaced over time, but the glass can be kept.

Considerations for Plastic and Glass Hummingbird Feeders

cleaning and sterilization

the lightness ofcleaninga feeder depends more on its design.

All parts, seals, and more should be cleaned and sterilized every time the feeder is refilled to keep bacteria and mold away from the sugar water. Spoiled or moldy nectar is detrimental to hummingbird health.

In general, dish soap and warm soap can effectively clean a feeder.

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A soft toothbrush can rub small parts, seals, and connectors.

Rinse with cold water and allow to air dry completely before refilling.


Plastic vs. Glass Hummingbird Feeders (Pros and Cons) | (6)

Choose a colorful bird feeder that will add beauty to your decor and the colors will invite hummingbirds to your garden.

Red, orange, and yellow colors in bird feeders are attractive to hummingbirds. This is because the flowers of these colors tend to have ahigher nectar content.

A feeder can also be of other colors, but also opt for red, orange and yellow. Look for feeders that offer these colors around the feeding holes.

However, keep in mind that bees also like the color yellow.

It is not recommended to use red colored water that contains any additive that could be detrimental to the health of the hummingbird.

The nectar is colorless in the flowers, but the bloom serves as a colorful port for the food source. Feeders can provide the same visual instructions.

insect prevention


If your hummingbird feeder is yellow,beesYou can also come to the feeding station to drink. Opt for a feeder without yellow or one designed to deter them and labeled as such.

However, if the feeder leaks or you spill sugar water on the floor while refilling it, the bees will keep coming.


Some feeders have an ant hole or a dome-shaped hook top of the perch. these will helpkeep ants away.

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The domed lid can also be purchased separately for use with plastic or glass feeder hangers.


Hummingbirds drink a lot of nectar for their high metabolic needs. To conserve energy at night, they go into a state of hibernation.solidificationto conserve energy and survive cooler night temperatures.

When they wake up, they eat right away to warm up and wake up. In general, sugar water should be replaced every 3-4 days.

Consider purchasing a feeder that holds a larger volume of sugar water to accommodate this schedule. Therefore, it does not need to be replaced as often and the hummingbird has enough to drink.

Remember that glass feeders are heavier than plastic ones, especially when filled with liquid. The bigger it is, the heavier it becomes. Heavy feeders should be attached to a post or branch that can support the weight.

If you have a larger feeding area, more hummingbirds may come, although they may guard food sources. When this is the case, hummingbirds are seen scaring others away.

Small ring-shaped plastic feeders can be used to hand feed hummingbirds. They also serve to offer the hummingbird a quick snack.

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Consider buying several different sizes in both glass and plastic.


Hummingbirds are not picky about bird feeders and whether they are made of glass or plastic. They prefer attractive colors in shades of red, orange, or yellow, especially around feeding areas.

Choosing a glass or plastic feeder depends on the person buying it.

Glass feeders come in stunning color palettes that add beauty as garden ornaments. They are sturdy, and while they do have plastic parts, they are less likely to need replacing over time.

Plastic feeders tend to be cheaper than glass ones, but they will warp, fade, and crack over time with use and exposure to the elements.

Some plastic feeders may also be made with bisphenol-A (BPA), which can be harmful to wildlife.

Plastic feeders come in a variety of shapes to accommodate different capacities and shapes.

Plastic vs. Glass Hummingbird Feeders (Pros and Cons) | (7)

Get our FREE Bird Seed Cheat Sheet

Do you want more birds in your garden? Get easy tips on how to attract feathered friends and maximize feeding for your birds. Our free cheat sheet has you covered!

Download the FREE Cheat Sheet

Plastic vs. Glass Hummingbird Feeders (Pros and Cons) | (8)

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