I am a hummingbird rehabilitator in Albuquerque NM. In the summer my house is filled with growing birds that have, for some reason, lost their mothers, and the house is surrounded by birds raising families in the big cottonwood trees in the neighborhood.
When hanging hummingbird feeders we have three major conditions to contend with, here in the desert southwest.
The first, especially in spring, is wind. High winds that blow off roofs, and dump feeders in their path.
The second is sun. Our sun gazes upon any object in its path with such intense energy that most plastics are reduced to powder in a few months.
The third is ravenous (and thirsty) insects that will take advantage of any sweet liquid around.
I find that the little L-F model Hummingbird feeder made by Droll Yankees Inc., of Foster, Rhode Island, copes well with all these potential problems. It's in the shape of a flying saucer, consequently does not empty in the wind. It is made of polycarbonate, and can withstand the sun. (mine is still in use after 15 years). And the openings are too small for wasps an bees to use very effectively. It's a little more expensive than some...but 15 years and still feeding is more than one should ask of the intial investment.
The model above has 3 ports and holds roughly 4 oz of nectar. A larger model is also satisfactory if there are many birds using it. However, I would rather have the feeder emptied early for regular cleaning than have a great reservoir waiting hopefully, in which the mold grows. I usually start out with several little feeders, switch to big ones as the first generation of youngsters start appearing, and reduce the size again late in the fall.
Droll Yankees Inc.
27 Mill Road, Foster, RI 02825
(800) 352-9164, fax: (401) 647-7620