Search found 1539 matches

by Scully
Sun May 19, 2013 9:15 pm
Forum: Purple Martin Forum
Topic: Good Number Of Peregrine Falcons This Year
Replies: 8
Views: 2568

Steve, a MUST read for anyone who loves peregrines is J.A> Baker's "The Peregrine". http://www.independent.co.uk/arts-entertainment/books/reviews/book-of-a-lifetime-the-peregrine-by-ja-baker-1688881.html Very little is known about JA Baker. Born in 1926, he was a librarian, lived in Essex and wrote ...
by Scully
Sat May 18, 2013 4:22 pm
Forum: Purple Martin Forum
Topic: Conley Entrances
Replies: 7
Views: 2046

Two years ago I made a major purchase of forty-eight Troyer Horizontals with Conley II entrances as part of an assortment of Modified Excluder and Bo-11 gourds. We put up thirteen new gourd racks around the district, each with four of the three gourd types for a total of twelve on the rack. After se...
by Scully
Fri May 17, 2013 4:51 pm
Forum: Purple Martin Forum
Topic: The 2013 season - always something different
Replies: 8
Views: 2153

Uh-oh, what a difference a day makes. I have a duty station, radio in hand, out in front of the school every day at closing time, 4:05pm. Generally I'll check what the martins are doing while I'm standing out there. Most of our colony are feeding young by now; actively foraging and frequently return...
by Scully
Fri May 17, 2013 3:06 pm
Forum: Purple Martin Forum
Topic: A quick way to kill starlings
Replies: 34
Views: 16339

Here ya go Matt, first a demo of the importance of the tail in male house sparrow displays. This here is a pic taken some years back of a male sparrow attempting to intimidate a purple martin out of a gourd.... http://img.photobucket.com/albums/v148/Sharpshin/martins/sparrowbluegourdmartinsmall_zps1...
by Scully
Fri May 17, 2013 10:15 am
Forum: Purple Martin Forum
Topic: A quick way to kill starlings
Replies: 34
Views: 16339

People do tend to overestimate the effect of killing on populations. Look at mourning doves: In Texas more than FIVE MILLION are legally shot every year by hunters, year after year, yet the bird remains common all across the state. Would that we could kill five million each of house sparrows and sta...
by Scully
Fri May 17, 2013 9:17 am
Forum: Purple Martin Forum
Topic: A great spring for bird watchers
Replies: 7
Views: 2807

I thought migration would be over in Texas by now but this is great. Rich, over by Houston you get even more migrants than we do. If you haven't been already, put High Island on your to-do list, about sixty miles from Houston, on the coast, thirty miles easy of Galveston (we usually take the ferry)...
by Scully
Fri May 17, 2013 8:30 am
Forum: Purple Martin Forum
Topic: BO-11 Gourds
Replies: 14
Views: 4317

My least favorite feature of the recent S&K gourds are the flip-off caps on the inspection ports. OTOH we have had a couple of Combo gourds left out 24/7 all year round for maybe four years now with no sign of the sun breaking down the plastic as commonly happens with screw-off lids. One thing next ...
by Scully
Fri May 17, 2013 7:03 am
Forum: Purple Martin Forum
Topic: BO-11 Gourds
Replies: 14
Views: 4317

We have more than twenty crescent Bo-11's out, and have been using S&K porched crescents on their other gourds for years. Just two cases of wing entrapment over the years among many of these gourds we have used. Other than that, no problems at all, and NO starling invasions. I will say that martins ...
by Scully
Thu May 16, 2013 3:34 pm
Forum: Purple Martin Forum
Topic: A quick way to kill starlings
Replies: 34
Views: 16339

Emil,

Please get back to us on how this method worked for you.

So far my sample size is... one starling.

Thanks,

Mike Scully
by Scully
Thu May 16, 2013 3:26 pm
Forum: Purple Martin Forum
Topic: The 2013 season - always something different
Replies: 8
Views: 2153

Forecast to hit 100 here today. Most of our nests have young in them now, interesting that we should lose many fewer eggs than Corpus. Those martins feeding young however are foraging way up high, a good sign. In my observations martins are high-altitude foragers, ideally tapping into a stream of dr...
by Scully
Thu May 16, 2013 2:06 pm
Forum: Purple Martin Forum
Topic: A quick way to kill starlings
Replies: 34
Views: 16339

Since the sparrow/starling can not be killed at many public sites, at least their reproduction could be stopped for at least one season after they are let go. This is not perfect but could help those who manage public sites etc.... Jodie, I am unaware of anything you can GIVE a bird to stop its rep...
by Scully
Thu May 16, 2013 2:01 pm
Forum: Purple Martin Forum
Topic: A quick way to kill starlings
Replies: 34
Views: 16339

The ability to fly is hampered and the birds fly into things and injure themselves because they can't navigate. Sir, Feel free to come here and watch some of our tailless sparrows navigate... :lol: I cannot tell a difference and I've been watching birds, sometimes professionally, for more than 40 y...
by Scully
Thu May 16, 2013 1:46 pm
Forum: Purple Martin Forum
Topic: Natureline Gourd Problem
Replies: 11
Views: 7014

For several years more than half of the gourds we used every year were the old-style, plain crescent Naturelines with no porch of any kind, inside or out (four of 'em in this pic, one painted yellow). http://img.photobucket.com/albums/v148/Sharpshin/martins/IMG_1140.jpg In fact, up until this year t...
by Scully
Thu May 16, 2013 10:05 am
Forum: Purple Martin Forum
Topic: A quick way to kill starlings
Replies: 34
Views: 16339

I have a problem with clipping wings also. They may starve to death and that isn't a very humane way to dispose of them. I do not clip wing feathers for that very reason. Tail feathers will grow back and they will still be causing problems for the Martins We typically have at leasr thirty active ho...
by Scully
Thu May 16, 2013 5:47 am
Forum: Purple Martin Forum
Topic: A quick way to kill starlings
Replies: 34
Views: 16339

A quick way to kill starlings

As the regulars on here know, all my martin keeping is done on public school campuses. In such a setting the killing of starlings and sparrows must be done very discretely, if at all. The house sparrow problem we have been able to address by trapping invading house sparrows in the gourds, clipping o...
by Scully
Tue May 14, 2013 1:02 pm
Forum: Purple Martin Forum
Topic: A great spring for bird watchers
Replies: 7
Views: 2807

Interesting thing is, even more birds come back through going south from August through October, at least twice as many (includng the young of the year), but they are not nearly as obvious. Longer migration period, many dull young of the year, perhaps more concealing vegetation. Only one that is obv...
by Scully
Tue May 14, 2013 7:46 am
Forum: Purple Martin Forum
Topic: The School Colony: 9 of 23 young lost last week
Replies: 7
Views: 2174

Ya, I've had nests with up to ten eggs in them; an old clutch and a new one. That many does appear to affect the hatching of the good clutch, but in many cases you cannot tell good egg from bad. In our colony, the reverberations of that cold spell continue, with two presumably bad clutches disappear...
by Scully
Sun May 12, 2013 7:03 pm
Forum: Purple Martin Forum
Topic: A great spring for bird watchers
Replies: 7
Views: 2807

A great spring for bird watchers

The repeated late cold fronts that have given our martins trouble also repeatedly stalled out untold millions of spring migrants returning to our northern forests. The numbers involved are indeed staggering, I believe estimates running in the one billion range. Suffice to say, northbound songbird mi...
by Scully
Fri May 10, 2013 9:33 pm
Forum: Purple Martin Forum
Topic: The School Colony: 9 of 23 young lost last week
Replies: 7
Views: 2174

The School Colony: 9 of 23 young lost last week

Wednesday of last week, right before the record cold front hit we went out and did nest checks. In our 48 gourds were found 23 small young among five nests. and 175 eggs among thirty-six nests, six gourds with no eggs or young. I was mostly concerned about the nestlings, and the effect that perhaps ...
by Scully
Fri May 10, 2013 9:06 pm
Forum: Purple Martin Forum
Topic: Nasty Super Cell Last Nite - Ck for broken eggs?
Replies: 3
Views: 1733

Gourds seem less prone to wind damge than houses, Back when we used overloaded telescoping Carrol poles they survived some incredible storms that blew down trees and tore shingles roofs off nearby houses. In fact we still have one up (more than 10 years old now) and it survived this morning's and th...