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Model 221 "Oasis"


P-P 221

The Perky-Pet No. 221 "Oasis" model feeder is basically a knock-off of the Aspects HummZinger): a clear plastic basin with a red plastic cover, a circular perch molded onto the cover, an integrated ant moat, and a brass hanging rod; there's also a socket for pole mounting. It apparently comes only in a 16-ounce model, which is larger than many folks need, but may appeal to those whose feeders are emptied daily. It cost me $12 at Target, and carries a one-year warranty. I feel this is an important product, because 1) it is or will soon be very widely available, and 2) it represents a break with the traditional Perky-Pet designs.

Comparison to the HummZinger is inevitable, and the Oasis does not fare well. Instead of the HummZinger's molded-in "flowers" (which function to channel rainwater away from the feeding ports), the Oasis has the ubiquitous, fragile Perky-Pet snap-in flowers...which of course are YELLOW, reportedly the favorite color of wasps. Fortunately, I still had a supply of red P-P flowers, dating from when they were offered as free replacements. The yellow ones could also be painted with red nail polish. The ant moat does not have the rainwater-overflow drains of the HummZinger, nor is the plastic, which appears to be styrene, as tough as the HummZinger's Lexan (the P-P packaging cautions against stressing the perch or exposing the feeder to very hot water--the HummZinger is simply guaranteed forever). Still, the Oasis is several dollars less expensive than the large HummZinger, so I suppose one gets what one pays for, and it's an attractive, functional, very easy to clean feeder that with some care should last for years. One design choice I don't understand: the lid does not simply rest on the bowl, but must be snapped into place with some force; this makes it prone to spills and breakage.

One design flaw was demonstrated upon the arrival of a very small male Ruby-throated: the perch is a little too far from the flowers, leaving the ports out of reach, so the smallest hummers must hover to feed. Another problem is its tendency to hang crooked; I don't know if the rod is simply too short for the width of the bowl, but the Oasis never stays level, so filling it more than halfway is inviting spillage...which will attract ants and wasps.

Naturally, the packaging still says, "For best results use Perky-Pet Instant Nectar." Baloney. The HummZinger has the correct syrup formula molded into the underside of its lid.

I'm encouraged that Perky-Pet has released a more-sensible design that will enable the less-than-fanatical to maintain their feeders properly. If a feeder is tough to clean, many people simply won't, and that's not good stewardwhip. I wish the Oasis were less expensive, to encourage newbies to buy it instead of P-P's hard-to-clean, drippy, bottle feeders (especially the notorious Four Fountains model); manufacturing cost for the Oasis must be a fraction of that for models with glass bottles. And there's no excuse for yellow flowers; P-P sells red replacements, but the discount stores rarely stock them, and the public is generally unaware of the difference (except that humans have been conditioned to expect yellow flowers). If you need a new hummingbird feeder or wish to simplify your feeder maintenance chores, I still recommend the HummZinger/WBU, but the Perky-Pet Oasis may be the best feeder you'll find outside of a bird store and is a fair alternative.

Woodstream Corp.
69 North Locust Street
Lititz, PA 17543


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