I have made an ant moat from a hairspray cap and wire and where I inserted the wire, I used a caulk to seal the hole. If you can look at one at "Wild Birds Unlimited", you can go home and make one. They were like $8 and you can make one much cheaper than that.
Go to "Wild Birds Unlimited" store or on line and they have ant moats you fill with water and the feeder hangs below it. I have had great success with this. I tried the petroleum jelly but it was messy in the hot weather and did no good. The ant moats are the answer.
Using Vaseline at the hanger & on the top works perfectly. It's easy to wipe clean & reapply. And inexpensive.
Simply put a 'gob' of vaseline on the hangar, wire, or whatever you are hanging the feeder with. Cover it several inches, leaving no side undone. Ants will not cross through the vaseline. When it gets gunky, wipe it off and replace with new vaseline. Works like a charm!
It is called an oil cup and hangs between the feeder and the hook. Most stores that have hummer feeders have them. If you live somewhere where it rains, get a one that has a roof over it. My husband made one out of a toilet float by cutting it in half and using one half as the oil cup and the other half as a roof. Put motor oil in the oil cup and the ants cannot cross it. The roof should be far enough from the oil cup that the ants cannot bypass the oil cup and the oil.
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