While we wait

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TNMartins
Posts: 47
Joined: Tue May 15, 2018 6:59 pm
Location: Smyrna, TN

Well - With the COVID-19 fun many of us get to work from home for the next several weeks and go nowhere. On a good note, it gives us more time to keep an eye out for returning Martins. Here in Middle Tennessee it's cold raining and just nasty (40's and 50's). It's hard to imagine a PM could survive in this weather very long. But the Scout-arrival study (and some of you!) shows returning PMs are way up into Illinois Indiana Ohio and PA. SAS says arrivals are all around here now. I've had housing up with Dawnsong blasting since March 7. All cavities are closed as Starlings will be trying to squeeze into the SREHs within hours and I'm not able to spend my days shooting them. My plan is to open a couple cavities this weekend and dedicate time to removing Starlings.

Just curious about you folks lucky enough to see PMs this early in the year - what is it that you actually see? Do they hang around on your racks, fly around overhead, zoom in at dusk? Maybe a tiny glimpse and they're gone or do you see them multiple times a day?

What should I be looking for if they're here and checking out my site?

Thanks - Still a newb.
TNMartins
12 S&K B09 Gourds w/ 2 S&K barns converted to 6 cavities each

2016 - 0 visits
2017 - Few visitors late summer
2018 - 1 Pair, 5 Fledged
2019 - Visitors
2020 -
jhcox
Posts: 464
Joined: Thu May 26, 2016 9:23 am
Location: tennesse
Martin Colony History: Started colony in 2014. First pair to stay and raise young in 2018.

TNMartins I'm in the same boat the SAS shows martins around me but nothing at my site yet. I had 10 pair last year and several singles but nothing so far this year not even a glimpse of one flying over. The wait is frustrating makes you worry that they may not return at all. but I'll keep playing the Dawn song and watch the skies. Good luck I hope it happens for you this year.
Fuzzmeister
Posts: 178
Joined: Mon Sep 25, 2017 9:02 pm
Location: Saskatchewan Canada

Jhcox
I know exactly how you feel waiting patiently for them to return! Last year was my second year and I kept thinking there not coming and then one day it was cold and snowing and I looked up at the Martin house and there was one with his head sticking out of the hole, then 2 days later another one and that’s the way it kept going until I had 20 pairs, so hang in there and be patient and they will surprise you!!
flyin-lowe
Posts: 2856
Joined: Wed Mar 29, 2006 8:49 am
Location: Indiana/Henry Co.

With only one pair last year it really depends on what you should expect to see. If one or both of your martins survived the migration, they could arrive and go straight into the cavity they used last year. That is not totally unheard of. If you get some that are just buzzing your housing and then seem to disappear they could be from someone else's colony and just passing through. At my old colony it was not uncommon for my ASY's to show up one day and be gone a day or two only briefly returning and then after a few days they start spending a lot of time at my place. Since I've started this colony at my new place the returning martins have spent quite a bit of time here as soon as they return. Last year we had the worst weather I have had early in the season and the martins were cooped up in cavities due to cold rainy weather. After three straight days of temps to cold to feed and with wet snow/rain I had to supplemental feed for the first time. So last year they arrived, went into cavities and held up their for a while. As long as there are some breaks in the rain and temps get into the 50's during the day they should be OK, I am assuming in TN you are reaching 50 most days.
2020 47 of 52 cavities with nest (5/29)(HOSP Count 6)
2019- 31 Pair over 100 fledged
2018- 15 pair last count 49 fledged
2017 3 SY pair nested, 12 eggs total, fledged 10. 4 additional SY's stayed all summer but never paired/nested.
2016 1 pair fledged 4
2015 Visitors
2014 Visitors
2013 Moved 6 miles away, 1 pair fledged 2.
2012 30 pair fledged 100.
2011 12 pair (11 that nested), 43 fledged.
2010 5 pair, 21 eggs, 16 hatched, 14 fledged.
Dave Reynolds
Posts: 1853
Joined: Mon Jan 31, 2011 4:35 pm
Location: Little Hocking, Oh.
Martin Colony History: 2018 Success at my Satellite Site “Oxbow Golf Course”.
2019 Success at my home Site "Little Hocking, Ohio".

.... Wow ,,,, I thought I was the only one still waiting for that first arrival... This time of year is nerve racking,, Sometimes the weather is not good this time of year, and the early Martins always come when you don’t expect them.. Good luck everyone... Were all in the same boat... Hurry up and wait.... :grin: :grin: :grin:

Dave
Home Site “Little Hocking, Ohio”
2010 / 2018 -- Lots of Visitors
2019 — First pair, 5 Eggs, 5 hatched, 5 fledged. :wink:
2020 — They Showed up on March 28 for another year... :wink:

Satellite Site “Oxbow Golf Course”
2018 -- 15 Pair, 58 Eggs, 38 Hatched and 36 Fledged :wink:
2019 — 26 Pair, 128 Eggs, 99 Hatched and 97 Fledged. :wink:
2020 — They showed up on April 24 for another year... :wink:

PMCA Member
Rodger Drye
Posts: 671
Joined: Sun Mar 23, 2014 10:07 am
Location: NC/Mt. Pleasant
Martin Colony History: Have been hosting and providing a sanactuary for Purple Martins for 30 years.

TNMartins,

I’ve been keeping these Bird’s since 1990, and I keep accurate records each year of their arrival. For 31 years I’ve Kept records of when I first see my first Martin. Of those 31 years they have only came in on the same date two times. Twice they have arrived on March 29, 1992 and March 29, 1995. All the other years they have come in on different days.

This year was the earliest they’ve ever come in @ March 07,2020. Next closest was March 10, 2014. The latest they ever came in was May 28, 1999. For sure I didn’t think they were coming in that year, but they fooled me. Can’t figure out why they showed up so late that year, but I was more than glad that they did get here.

I would encourage everyone to keep arrival Records each year and display them. I display mine in my Shop, It’s neat to look back and see each year when they arrive.
So yes just be as patient as you can and they will get here when they’re supposed to.!

Rodger
PMCA Member
Have been Hosting and Protecting Martin's for 30 years.
TNMartins
Posts: 47
Joined: Tue May 15, 2018 6:59 pm
Location: Smyrna, TN

@ flyin-lowe -

The one pair I had was 2 years ago. Last year, a TS pair ran them off before I realized what was happening. So keeping a watchful eye out this year for TS, which is another reason I have everything closed up until I see PMs. Just not sure how to know if the PMs are here.
12 S&K B09 Gourds w/ 2 S&K barns converted to 6 cavities each

2016 - 0 visits
2017 - Few visitors late summer
2018 - 1 Pair, 5 Fledged
2019 - Visitors
2020 -
deancamp
Posts: 398
Joined: Wed Mar 16, 2016 9:17 pm
Location: Raymore, MO

I would say most likely you will here them flying overhead. Also circling your setup checking it out or maybe landed on it.
rrmartins
Posts: 1413
Joined: Tue Oct 19, 2010 8:04 am
Location: Round Rock, TX

TNMartins wrote:
Tue Mar 17, 2020 3:17 pm
Well - With the COVID-19 fun many of us get to work from home for the next several weeks and go nowhere. On a good note, it gives us more time to keep an eye out for returning Martins. Here in Middle Tennessee it's cold raining and just nasty (40's and 50's). It's hard to imagine a PM could survive in this weather very long. But the Scout-arrival study (and some of you!) shows returning PMs are way up into Illinois Indiana Ohio and PA. SAS says arrivals are all around here now. I've had housing up with Dawnsong blasting since March 7. All cavities are closed as Starlings will be trying to squeeze into the SREHs within hours and I'm not able to spend my days shooting them. My plan is to open a couple cavities this weekend and dedicate time to removing Starlings.

Just curious about you folks lucky enough to see PMs this early in the year - what is it that you actually see? Do they hang around on your racks, fly around overhead, zoom in at dusk? Maybe a tiny glimpse and they're gone or do you see them multiple times a day?

What should I be looking for if they're here and checking out my site?

Thanks - Still a newb.
TNMartins
Is watching bodies being loaded into trucks with forklifts fun for you? Wow!!!
2019
T14
7 pair
25 fledged
MartinBoy14012
Posts: 15
Joined: Wed Jan 15, 2020 4:18 pm
Location: Barker,NY

Dave Reynolds wrote:
Tue Mar 17, 2020 8:12 pm
.... Wow ,,,, I thought I was the only one still waiting for that first arrival... This time of year is nerve racking,, Sometimes the weather is not good this time of year, and the early Martins always come when you don’t expect them.. Good luck everyone... Were all in the same boat... Hurry up and wait.... :grin: :grin: :grin:

Dave
I'm on the south shore of Lake Ontario so I'm still waiting too. My scouts usually arrive around May 10th, although I think it will be earlier this year. I'm heading out to the cottage tonight for a few days, so I plan on setting up my gourd rack. I will pre-nest the gourds with the openings closed and wait for arrivals. :roll:
Black Jack
Posts: 65
Joined: Mon May 06, 2019 4:37 pm
Location: NC

Had 1pr of ASY show up on the 22nd of March. They are still here in eastern NC. Came back to the same gourd as last year.
tboydshirt
Posts: 68
Joined: Sun Feb 04, 2018 1:42 pm
Location: sugarcreek,ohio
Martin Colony History: new in 2017, but ready for lots of birds. 44 gourds and 40 t14 style holes

rrmartins. lighten up. :evil:
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