Nest Material

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DAVE
Posts: 288
Joined: Mon May 05, 2008 10:03 am
Location: Winchester, VA

In Mid-March I opened up PM Gourds. I put in long-needle pine needles in all. Yesterday (5-15-08) :???: I did a nest check and there was very few pine needles left. I have Troyer Tunnels on natural gourds, so I don't think the wind could've blown them out. Once in awhile I see a wren setting on the gourd porch, but they don't enter. Should I replace the pine needles with new or just let it be? I have one adult male and one sub-adult female. Been here for about five weeks.
Dave
Sparky
Posts: 1889
Joined: Wed Jan 28, 2004 11:04 pm
Location: Texas/Katy

Dave, I would just leave it alone. The female is cleaning house. They also might be the ones that are too "stiff" and they may look for something softer. If you have an elevated feeder or B & B you can put out some pine needles on it. They will pick and choose what they need in their nest. :grin:
I'm a "nestcamaholic" Is 18 hours a day a bad thing? (I have 2 this year, luckily I have 2 eyes!)
martinteach
Posts: 188
Joined: Tue Mar 04, 2008 8:14 am
Location: Richmond, TX

Hi Sparky,

I've had an exhausting afternoon! Do you know where I can get pine needles? PetSmart is not so smart. They didn't know that a purple martin was a bird and I was totally on my own. I bought a combination of natural shredded pine and something like hay underneath it.

The problem that I encountered tonight is that my newest birds had fire ants biting them. I also think that I saw mites in there (very tiny bugs), but I'm not sure. I sprayed teflon spray around the post and cleaned out the nests as best I could. I didn't spray anything to kill the bugs inside.

Also, I have 11 babies now but noticed that there are lots of missing eggs. No broken eggs around the site. All excluder holes.

Daryle
Last edited by martinteach on Fri May 16, 2008 8:23 pm, edited 1 time in total.
iluvbirds
Posts: 407
Joined: Thu May 20, 2004 6:38 pm
Location: Kentucky/Murray

Daryle, I had a big box of pine needles that I had collected this past winter, but my hubby thinking it was trash, burned them. I had a bale of straw here, so I threw some of that on the ground in front of the gourd racks. My birds starting using the straw, and they love it. I put the rest of the bale over by the compost bin, and they now go over there, and get what they want. So, if you have any bales of straw, put that out for them. If you don't have any, you could probably find some at your local farm store. Hope this helps.
....... Pat
DAVE
Posts: 288
Joined: Mon May 05, 2008 10:03 am
Location: Winchester, VA

Daryle,
I used to live in Conroe, TX. If you drive North on I-45 between Willis, TX and Huntsville, TX, you'll find all the pine needles you need on the ground. However, Pat's suggestion would probably be cheaper in the longrun because of the cost of gas and probably better anyway. The only problem I see with straw is that it holds the moisture.
Dave
Guest

Hey Daryle,

I also put out straw hay and they loved it. It seems pretty soft and I took scissors and cut it into short pieces. They mudded some of it up and now they are stylin! :wink:

Good luck. 8)


Yabba DABBA Doooooo!!!!! :shock:
Guest

I read that dried corn husks cut in 2" pieces makes a good martin nest. As a newbie, I've been reading EVERY thing martin. I have some and planned to use them for my nest change. My pair stopped at 5 eggs. I don't want to use anything harmful, but I actually stole my pine needles - from a church lawn :oops: (not mine). No pine trees near, but lots of corn-on-the-cob.
Has anybody used this?
iluvbirds
Posts: 407
Joined: Thu May 20, 2004 6:38 pm
Location: Kentucky/Murray

Liz, I bought some corn husks at Wal-Mart. The kind you wrap hot tamales with. I ripped them into about 1-2 inch strips. My birds like them too, but they seem to use the straw up before the husks.
....... Pat
Guest

Thanks Pat, I don't have a feeder, so maybe I'll change churches!
You ripped yours up? :shock: I used scissors and a ruler. Hmmmmm.
iluvbirds
Posts: 407
Joined: Thu May 20, 2004 6:38 pm
Location: Kentucky/Murray

I started out using scissors, but I found it a lot quicker, just to stack them on top of each other, then grab an edge, and start ripping.... :)
....... Pat
Guest

I was joshing but now I'm seriously gonna give it a try - next BBQ. Thanks
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