Troyer and Sparrows

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Carlton
Posts: 1931
Joined: Tue May 17, 2005 6:42 pm
Location: Florida/Pompano Beach
Martin Colony History: I moved to South Florida, from Delaware, in August of 2015.

I will have 2 MSS-8 houses, with Excluder entrances, here on my condo grounds. This season I will also have two Deluxe Gourd Racks with 24 Excluder Gourds with Modified Excluder entrances. In our condo development, along the lake in a different section, I have 8 Excluder Gourds hanging from 84 inch Shepherd's Hooks with predator guards.

At Quiet Waters Park, nearby in Deerfield Beach, I care for a Deluxe Gourd Rack with 12 TVG's. I also care for a Deluxe Gourd rack with 12 Excluder gourds with Modified Excluder entrances.

At another local park, Tradewinds Park at Coconut Creek, care for a Trendsetter 12, 5 gourds rack with 60 Excluder gourds with Modified Excluder Entrances and 1 Deluxe Gourd Rack with 12 Troyer Vertical Gourds with wing guards over the Conley II to keep out smaller starlings.

I would like to try the Troyer but I understand they have not yet perfected a house sparrow trap for them. I MUST have a method to control the house sparrows as they are very numerous around here. I have just ONE pesky male house sparrow around that refuses to be caught. He will not enter any kind of trap including traps inside my Supergourds. He perches around though and attacks any martins trying to look inside ANY of the gourds. So frustrating. I can't use a bb gun because of the location. He has been here since April and I think has been one of the reasons I have not had any nesting pairs of martins. The martins still come and sit for hours but few look in the gourds as the sparrow attacks them when they try.
Sharon - Central TX
Posts: 643
Joined: Sun Feb 08, 2004 9:20 pm
Location: So. Central TX
Martin Colony History: All Troyer Horizontal Gourds with Conley Entrances
PMCA Member since 2004

Carlton,
When you find the answer, let me know too :-). I have a male sparrow who keeps eluding me. All I have to do is unlock the window and he is GONE. Even though I don't have any martins now, I just don't like the idea of the sparrows gaining ground in my gourds. I may just go ahead and plug them up since our season is over. I don't want to remove them as I do want to advertise for next season. Does anyone know if it is bad to plug them while birds are migrating through? Do they need to actually look in or go in or is just seeing the house/gourds good enough?
Sharon
Laverne
Posts: 2216
Joined: Thu Jan 08, 2004 1:58 pm
Location: TX/Alvin
Martin Colony History: Erected 1st house in 1997. Birds were checking it out before Mike got down from the ladder. Six cavities had a little colony 1st year. Grown to 88 cavities all gourds with near 100% occupancy. Most important factor for success is rain = bugs.

Hello Sharon.

I believe you would be safe to plug the holes. Do you have some of those swimming pool noodles? I hear they are the greatest to use as entrance plugs.

At this time of the season, when migrating birds investigate your site, they don't need to go inside the cavities.

Are you seeing very many visitors? I don't usually get very many after the final nest has fledged - it gets real quiet around here... :-(
Sincerely,
Laverne
Sharon - Central TX
Posts: 643
Joined: Sun Feb 08, 2004 9:20 pm
Location: So. Central TX
Martin Colony History: All Troyer Horizontal Gourds with Conley Entrances
PMCA Member since 2004

Hi Laverne,
Yes, as a matter of fact, I have been seeing quite a few visitors. Gives me hope for next season after our snake mishap. Maybe getting that gourd w/snake in it off so quickly helped. BTW, we actually tossed the gourd - just didn't want a chance that any martins could figure out a snake had been in it :-). Also, figured it was bad luck!!!
Thanks for the recommendation for plugging the holes. There is a martin on one of the quad pod houses right now looking at it. He is a subbie male. I'm glad the house and gourds are still attracting martins. We had a huge flock (if you can call them that) of martins about two weeks ago that were flying over our back yard and several landed in the live oaks. I couldn't believe my eyes. It was like a mini roost. They didn't stay long though.
Sharon
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