Will Hummingbirds Use A Birdhouse? (3 Things to Note)

by Kloee Ngozi
Updated on

Hummingbirds are incredible tiny winged birds. They are a fantastic sight to watch.

Hummingbirds enjoy the sensation of air on their faces. And they enjoy flying around a lot. 

However, after displaying that level of energy. They would, of course, require a place to rest.

Every animal requires some form of protection. Obviously, to protect it from predators and harsh weather conditions, as well as to rest. 

However, will hummingbirds use a birdhouse as much as they need shelter? If you want to find out, keep reading. 

Will Hummingbirds Use A Birdhouse?

Will Hummingbirds Use A Birdhouse

No, hummingbirds will not use a birdhouse. They are not cavity dwellers. These birds crave fresh air in their faces. This is why a birdhouse is a no-no for them. They would rather make a nest out of plants, lichen, and even spider webs.

These tiny birds also use plant fibers from cattails to make their nest.

They could also make use of anything with a fibrous or fuzzy component, such as willows, cottonwood, witch hazel, etc.

Most hummingbirds build their nests in the forks of small trees or bushes. This provides a level of support to secure the nest against winds and other movements.

Interestingly, female hummingbirds are solely responsible for nest construction. Males contribute nothing to the nest’s construction.

They should usually leave as soon as they are finished mating.

Female hummingbirds usually prioritize their safety. As a result, they usually build their nests in areas where predators cannot easily access them.

They make every effort to avoid encounters with predators during this time.

What Is A Birdhouse?

A birdhouse is a box, usually shaped like a house, in which a bird can build a nest. It is also known as a nest box. 

A birdhouse, like any other house, is primarily used for shelter. And, of course, most birds, whether wild or domestic, require some form of shelter. 

However, not all birds necessitate the use of a birdhouse. Hummingbirds, cardinals, and other small birds do not require a birdhouse.

They function perfectly well without them. 

For birdhouses, wood is the best material.

Other materials, such as metal or plastic, may not adequately insulate the nest, causing eggs or young to become chilled in cold weather or overheated in hot, sunny weather. 

One way of luring birds into a birdhouse is using food and water.

Related: Here is an article I wrote on are hummingbirds aggressive?

Can I Keep Hummingbirds In A Birdhouse?

Hummingbirds, as previously stated, do not reside in birdhouses. They prefer to build their own nest.

Hummingbirds are wild birds and so, they are not attracted to traditional birdhouses. Instead, they prefer an open environment, where they can appreciate nature.

This is why they build nests in the forks of tree branches. 

However, you can build a hummingbird house, but it must be specifically designed for hummingbirds if that is the species you want to attract.

But, the chances of a hummingbird staying in a birdhouse made of man-made materials are very slim.

Where Should You Put A Hummingbird House?

The best place to keep a hummingbird birdhouse is on a tree branch.

If you purchase a hummingbird nest, make sure it is placed under the edge of your roof or on a sheltered tree branch.

Hummingbird Houses must be specific in size and angle. Hence, it is preferable to buy one than attempting to build one on your own.

Hummingbirds prefer to nest near a ready supply of nectar and other food.

Therefore, they can be encouraged to nest in our yard by keeping some shrubbery and small deciduous trees.

They can seek protective cover from these trees, particularly around the perimeter of your yard.

As previously stated, female hummingbirds are in charge of nest construction. They typically build their nests in trees such as poplar, hornbeam, oak, and even pine.

The hummingbird bird will first choose a convenient location, which is usually a high place with wind and rain protection.

And, of course, the chosen area is not usually enclosed.

Hummingbirds require soft nesting material in an easily accessible location, such as cotton puffs, soft plants, and even dryer lint.

Hummingbirds will work on their nests for four or five days and will require constant access to nectar during this time.

At this time, make sure to keep hummingbird feeders close to the nesting area. Also, ensure the feeders are kept full and clean.

Also check out this article I wrote on feeding hummingbirds with sugar water

How Do You Make A Hummingbird Birdhouse?

Naturally, hummingbirds can make their nest themselves. This is the most preferred way of making nests.

The Female hummingbirds spend up to seven days building their flexible, bowl-shaped nests.

First, they create a base layer. Then, they incorporate spider silk by rolling it over the unfinished structure.

The silk, which holds the nest together and anchors it to a foundation, is inserted into nooks and crevasses to ensure attachment.

This construction requires several hours each day.

However, you can still make a birdhouse if you choose. The best way to do this is to get artificial branches that come with artificial leaf covers.

These leaf covers will serve as a shade. Then, place it on the eve of your house. And then the birds will naturally build their nest in it. 

But just as earlier stated you should purchase a birdhouse than you make one yourself. 

What Kind Of House Do Hummingbirds Like?

Hummingbirds would prefer to sleep in trees. They like to find sheltered spots in tree branches that aren’t exposed to cold winds. 

However, during nesting seasons, Female hummingbirds stay on their nests during the nesting season.

They build these nests on the ends of horizontal tree branches or at the edge of roofs. 

Hummingbirds will, however, prefer deciduous trees like oak, birch, or poplar trees over evergreens like pine amongst other trees.

This is because these deciduous trees often have lots of branches and leaves, which creates numerous sheltered spaces for hummingbirds. This assures them of their safety. 

They tend to build their nests in these same trees as well. And, they’d often like to find spots where the branches fork.

Hummingbird nests are almost impossible to spot, because they’re tiny, well-camouflaged, and hidden deep within the trees. 

Where Do Hummingbirds Nest At Night?

Hummingbirds spend the night in trees. It keeps them warm and sheltered. They’d usually find a place to hide deep in the leaves and branches, where they’d be as weather-protected as possible.

If a female hummingbird is nesting, she will stay on her nest all night.

Hummingbirds, as previously stated, dislike sleeping in small, enclosed spaces. They are unlikely to choose a birdhouse as an option.

They prefer to roost and build their nests in deciduous trees like oak, birch, or poplar trees to evergreens such as pine.

As stated previously, these trees have a large number of branches and leaves, resulting in a large number of sheltered spaces.

Hummingbirds are solitary creatures that sleep alone. They, unlike other birds, do not need to share body heat to stay warm.

This is because their ability to enter a state of torpor keeps them safe in cold weather. Female hummingbirds will, of course, sleep with their chicks while they are raising them.

Having said that, it’s not uncommon for several hummingbirds to sleep in the same tree or bush, or even on the same branch.

But, they will be spread out in these areas rather than huddling together as some other bird species. Even during migration, these birds do not form flocks like other birds.

It is important to know that when hummingbirds sleep, they go to a state called torpor.

Usually, hummingbirds go into torpor at night when they can no longer feed. These birds constantly fly around all day.

And so, they expend a lot of energy during the day.

Torpor is very beneficial to them. It helps them recover the enormous energy required during the day.

Torpor slows their body metabolism and their body temperature drops, allowing them to conserve energy while also allowing them to survive in cooler temperatures.

So don’t be surprised if you see a hummingbird bird hanging upside down like a bat in the middle of the night.

Many people believe they are dead when they see them in this condition. But, they’re only having a torpor moment.

However, torpor is very different from hibernation. While torpor is daily, most especially at night, hibernation is a state which usually lasts for months.

What Does A Hummingbird Nest Look Like

The nest of a hummingbird resembles a small knot of wood. They are typically shaped like bowls.

A hummingbird nest constructed of compacted green lichen, moss, and spider silk.

Its shape and coloring serve as camouflage for hummingbird eggs and chicks, keeping them safe from predators.


Every animal needs one form of shelter.

But birdhouse is a complete no-no for hummingbirds. Hummingbirds are not cavity dwellers.

This makes it nearly impossible for them to stay in a birdhouse.

Hummingbirds would prefer to nest on tree branches. This allows them to feel the air on their faces.

Photo of author

About the author

Kloee Ngozi

Kloee is a backyard farmer and avid gardener who enjoys tending to her garden and plants. She is so engrossed with her plants that she has pet names for all of them. She likes to relax with a bottle of wine and read a book.


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