Kansas update

Welcome to the internet's gathering place for Purple Martin enthusiasts
Post Reply
tonyg
Posts: 1520
Joined: Fri Feb 27, 2009 4:16 pm
Location: Olpe, KS
Martin Colony History: 22 year landlord, 14 at current residence..offering 9 racks and a homemade T-8 for 166 total cavities. 160 Pair in 2018 Racks consist of a Deluxe 12, AAA 16, Starburst 16, 2 K-18 Series, Super 24, 2 Gemini, Multi-purpose/two trio’s/4gourds and a T-8..Great hobby to be involved in..

First Martin was here March 31st. I now have 40/50 Martins (hard to count when flying in and out of housing). I had 30 plus nesting pair last year so if more dont' show up I will be down in count this year, sy's may make a difference if they show up. But i'm thankful for what I do have. Its a joy to watch them go about their business, finding the mate, finding the right house or gourd, socializing, etc.....Life is good to be a Martin Landlord...
CraigMo.
Posts: 1480
Joined: Mon Jan 05, 2004 12:30 pm
Location: Missouri/Lone Jack
Martin Colony History: Active since 2003

Tony I am probably down from last year also. Last year I had 22 pairs and right now I bet I have 18 pairs. Still early in season but not pressure on my half full house as of yet. Good luck.
stan davison
Posts: 715
Joined: Thu Feb 17, 2005 7:48 pm
Location: Tulsa Oklahoma

I think there might be a big group of adults to still come through. I have 3 or so unmated asy males.
ChrisM
Posts: 143
Joined: Thu Mar 18, 2010 1:01 pm
Location: Hiawatha, Kansas

let's hope population improves.

Martins gather green leaves for their nests, The trees aren't near leafed out yet, redbuds, dogwoods and ornamental pears, are gorgeousl up here with their blooms.

Myhusband helped me lower m house. Only 2 sparrow nests and still no eggs, for them, which is very surprising, considering what little pills they are... :evil:and they don't seem the least bet excited or concerned either. :shock:

Also I have not seen any Baltimore Orioles yet... My neighbor did see a house wren. Anyone care to coment?

ChrisM BrCoKs
GeneP
Posts: 523
Joined: Mon Jul 23, 2007 7:35 am
Location: Kansas, Lawrence
Martin Colony History: 1 gourd rack with 24 gourd capacity. 2018, my 11th year hosting martins.
18 pair in 2017.

I've had 1 pair the last 2 seasons. They successfully fledged 6 each year. This year a ASY male landed on 4-6-10 but I don't think he was mine. He peeked in a couple of gourds and left. Last season my ASY male arrived on Apr. 1, the year before Apr. 26. I'm beginning to wonder.

I was playing the Dawnsong but decided I didn't want to work at it. If my pair survived they'll be back without me playing the CD. If they didn't survive, I'm not sure I want to work that hard at getting just a single pair.

I had hoped to get an additional pair or two last season but it didn't happen and I'm not real thrilled at the prospect of starting all over again.

Chris M. - Haven't seen any Orioles, House Wrens either. Maybe I/we are being a little impatient with our Martins.
Jeff Robinson
Posts: 907
Joined: Mon May 04, 2009 3:32 pm
Location: Rogersville, Missouri
Martin Colony History: 2008 thru Current
72 Cavities - 68 Pairs in 2020
PM Mentor

Chris,
Your location's not in your profile, but if I recall, you're from Kansas??? Last year, I didn't get my first ASY pair till 9 May, then our second pair (SYs) on 19 May. We had the Orioles in force @ 10 May, and House Wrens pestered my PM housing often last year. I even wonder if it might have been a Wren that put holes in 2 of the eggs. If it wasn't the PERSISTENT Wren, then it must've been the one especially nasty-dispositioned SY that always snuck in right after all the other PMs left to go feed/before the girls started sitting on them.

Anyway, I'm in my third year and I have 2 pair a full month prior to last year's first pair, with lot's of additional PM activity around everyday, so more expected soon.
PMCA Member - Bedrock Colony
Louise Chambers
Site Admin
Posts: 6211
Joined: Tue Nov 04, 2003 1:07 pm
Location: Corpus Christi, TX

Absolutely there are many more ASY birds to come, and SY birds too. Adrian Hans on TX gulf coast reported another big arrival yesterday, and that scenario is being repeated at other locations along the coast.

Jeff, holes in eggs are likely either from house sparrows or house wrens. House Sparrows can be shot, trapped, but for house wrens, you can try to keep them away from martin and bluebird housing by giving them a house to use as far as possible, and out of view, of the other birds. Some landlords have some trouble with them, others don't. But nothing like the trouble house sparrows and starlings bring.

SY males will remove eggs and nestlings, but I have never heard of them pecking holes in eggs - martin beaks are not well designed for that. SY raids are difficult to deal with. I hate finding whole broods of nestlings or clutches of eggs gone, knowing that we have no starlings or house sparrows. Some landlords reserve some cavities for them and open them when numbers of SYs seem to be arriving.
Last edited by Louise Chambers on Wed Apr 14, 2010 10:20 am, edited 1 time in total.
Jeff Robinson
Posts: 907
Joined: Mon May 04, 2009 3:32 pm
Location: Rogersville, Missouri
Martin Colony History: 2008 thru Current
72 Cavities - 68 Pairs in 2020
PM Mentor

Thanks much Louise - I wondered if it wasn't that pesky couple House Wrens - they kept building nests in my open BB boxes, neither of which is closer than 35 yards, and would go in and out of several PM holes while they were out feeding. My back yard is littered with decorative river rock that I've thrown at the housing to scare the House Wrens away. On your suggestion, I will put up a dedicated Wren house, and did you say the Wren house should be out of sight of the PM housing, or that the Wren house entry should be facing away...or both?

I have little to no problem with S&S - the few brave starlings that try to breach the Conley 2s don't even come close, and I eliminate every male HOSP that shows. Thanks again Louise - I attribute a lot of my last year's 1st successful fledging to your suggestion to put up a couple gourds - and just 2 days later, I had an ASY pair take one of them. :grin:
PMCA Member - Bedrock Colony
ChrisM
Posts: 143
Joined: Thu Mar 18, 2010 1:01 pm
Location: Hiawatha, Kansas

Thanks Gene

I am in Brown County Kansas not too far from St Joseph, Missouri. and passed through there yesterday on way back from Leavenworth, Kansas with a friend. Although quite a distance from m houses I'd seen along the way, no martins on them or flying through.

Thanks Jeff

Never paid any attention as to weather house wrens ever ventured near m house before :shock: something to sure check out.

Thanks Louise

On update from coastal region, and information and response.

Appreciate it very much!

ChrisM Brown County, Ks
Louise Chambers
Site Admin
Posts: 6211
Joined: Tue Nov 04, 2003 1:07 pm
Location: Corpus Christi, TX

Jeff,

So glad that gourds did the trick!

I suggest getting the wren housing completely out of sight if possible.

Louise
tonyg
Posts: 1520
Joined: Fri Feb 27, 2009 4:16 pm
Location: Olpe, KS
Martin Colony History: 22 year landlord, 14 at current residence..offering 9 racks and a homemade T-8 for 166 total cavities. 160 Pair in 2018 Racks consist of a Deluxe 12, AAA 16, Starburst 16, 2 K-18 Series, Super 24, 2 Gemini, Multi-purpose/two trio’s/4gourds and a T-8..Great hobby to be involved in..

Thanks Louise for the Martin update..I have several cavities to be occupied yet, so send them my way....on another note, I ask several post ago about painting the 2 T-14 houses I made...right now they are natural cedar..in ur opinion, should I paint them white or leave them natural? They seem to be not interested in it..but the 2 gourds I have hanging from it on the pole are occupied...Thanks, Tony
jimnks
Posts: 59
Joined: Wed Mar 25, 2009 6:31 pm
Location: kansas/tonganoxie

Tony, I have 3 males and 2 females at my site,the first pair arrived on April 9, last year I had a total of 7 pair so I am down also. I have also noticed I only have about half of the BB's nesting that I had last year but I have an abundance of Tree Swallows, so many that I still haven't opened 1 martin house, because they still are landing on it.On a good note I have had not 1 HOSP try to move in to the martin housing, usually they are there before you get down off the ladder, I did shoot 2 males trying to take over a BB house. I have not seen any Kingbirds, Flycatchers, or Orioles yet either. I have wondered this for a while, how do people that have more than 10 or 15 pair count the dang things? I guess nest checks? I don't want to hear for you SLOW people in Kansas, you count their eyes and divide by 2!!! I still have hopes more martins will arrive. Have a nice day!! Jim and Lucky
jimnks
Louise Chambers
Site Admin
Posts: 6211
Joined: Tue Nov 04, 2003 1:07 pm
Location: Corpus Christi, TX

Tony, painting the t14s white will help keep them a bit cooler when things heat up. there is even a product you can add, reflectix or something, that has insulating ceramic beads in it - I'll try to find reference to that.

Some landlords use white stain rather than paint, let's the lovely grain show through a bit. It's somewhat typical for martins to fill the gourds first, then the house, though. so that may not be due to color of house but to how much the martins seem to like gourds - maybe for the extra privacy per couple?
tonyg
Posts: 1520
Joined: Fri Feb 27, 2009 4:16 pm
Location: Olpe, KS
Martin Colony History: 22 year landlord, 14 at current residence..offering 9 racks and a homemade T-8 for 166 total cavities. 160 Pair in 2018 Racks consist of a Deluxe 12, AAA 16, Starburst 16, 2 K-18 Series, Super 24, 2 Gemini, Multi-purpose/two trio’s/4gourds and a T-8..Great hobby to be involved in..

Thanks again Louise, i'll google that product, i'm sure I can find something that will work..

Hang tight Jim, from what i've read on here sounds like more Martins might be on their way....which is good news..
Guest

Regarding the insulating paint; if you google thermal block ceramic paint you will get the right type of manufacturers. Not a lot of distributors but at least one company allows you to order an additive package on-line and you simply put the ceramic granules in your paint. Ain't cheap tho! :)
tonyg
Posts: 1520
Joined: Fri Feb 27, 2009 4:16 pm
Location: Olpe, KS
Martin Colony History: 22 year landlord, 14 at current residence..offering 9 racks and a homemade T-8 for 166 total cavities. 160 Pair in 2018 Racks consist of a Deluxe 12, AAA 16, Starburst 16, 2 K-18 Series, Super 24, 2 Gemini, Multi-purpose/two trio’s/4gourds and a T-8..Great hobby to be involved in..

Thanks Ron, I'll check it out...
Guest

I live near the town of Perry (between Topeka and Lawrence.) I have no martins so far this year. I saw one male stop and look in the entrance holes, but he flew away and did not come back. I have seen many martins at martin houses in the town of Perry.

I've had martins every year now for several years. I wonder what happened. The house is in a great location, there are no nearby trees, there are power lines nearby to sit on, and there is a large pond across the road for water.
Guest

ks steve,
I think the Martins are comeing soon. I have had an early martin for three weeks now. He has been very persistant in attracting others to the site. They have yet to stay. In town there is a good size colony that is just now starting to get returners. I did get a second adult male today.
You might be surprised in a few weeks.
Guest

Thanks, I hope so. It just wouldn't seem like Spring without martins.
Guest

Both males now have mates, or one has two. Think the SY are just a week away or closer.
Post Reply