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Providing evidence to improve practice

Individual study: Green-backed Firecrowns Sephanoides sephaniodes prefer sucrose over glucose and sucrose in temperate forests in Argentina

Published source details

Chalcoff V.R., Aizen M.A. & Galetto L. (2008) Sugar preferences of the green-backed firecrown hummingbird (Sephanoides sephaniodes): a field experiment. The Auk, 125, 60-66


This study is summarised as evidence for the intervention(s) shown on the right. The icon shows which synopsis it is relevant to.

Provide supplementary food for hummingbirds to increase adult survival Bird Conservation

A randomised replicated and controlled study in temperate forests in southern Argentina (Chalcoff et al. 2008) found that green-backed firecrowns Sephanoides sephaniodes preferentially consumed sucrose solutions over glucose and fructose and preferred all sugar solutions over water. The preference for sucrose was only significant when the total amount of sugar consumed was examined (not the rate of visits, consumption/visit or consumption/hummingbird), with 24% and 68% more sucrose being consumed, compared to fructose and glucose respectively. There were no differences between sucrose and a glucose-fructose mix. Male hummingbirds used feeders more than females and more sugar was consumed at lower temperatures. All sugar solutions were the same concentration (24% by weight) and were provided from five commercial hummingbird feeders placed in three sites throughout the forest for ten days at a time in December 1999, February–May 2000, and January–February 2001.