Really Low numbers this Year

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Posts: 1889
Joined: Wed Jan 28, 2004 11:04 pm
Location: Texas/Katy

I'm usually at 95% full in my colony by this time. Usually it's 90% Adults with the rest Subbies. Must have lost some of the returning martins due to the drought. They maybe got weak, and never made it to Brazil to return to the States. Some subbies came through, but have not stayed. Looks like to be a dismal season. Although, I'm happy with the numbers as many landlords do not get at all. First time I've witnessed this in 12 years.
I'm a "nestcamaholic" Is 18 hours a day a bad thing? (I have 2 this year, luckily I have 2 eyes!)
Posts: 2172
Joined: Tue Feb 14, 2012 3:58 pm
Location: Rural SE Kansas
Martin Colony History: .

i hope they are just late. If not we are in a world of hurt.
2017 - Home & Public Colonies - 300 Cavities
Posts: 1889
Joined: Wed Jan 28, 2004 11:04 pm
Location: Texas/Katy

I hope so too. But,the adults I have were really early this year (January). I'm only at 50% occupancy right now. Very strange!
I'm a "nestcamaholic" Is 18 hours a day a bad thing? (I have 2 this year, luckily I have 2 eyes!)
Posts: 983
Joined: Thu Jan 22, 2004 7:34 pm
Location: Dripping Springs, Texas
Martin Colony History: :
Starting over in 2018
9 pair 2017
17 pair 2015
12 pair 2014
8 pair 2013
5 pair 2012
2 pair 2011

Something is different this year for sure. My neighborhood gets Martin on March 25th like clockwork. Even my 2nd colony near hockley has none returned yet
Emil Pampell-Tx
Posts: 6743
Joined: Tue Nov 11, 2003 1:26 pm
Location: Tx, Richmond (SW of Houston)
Martin Colony History: First started in Gretna, La in 1969 with a small homemade house, have had martins ever since at 2 different homes in Texas

Martins might move to larger colonies, because we have the normal amount of ASY martins. I have not seen a subbie yet, I was thinking that they had not yet arrived. Its hard to identify them quickly. In every respect, things look good here.
PMCA Member, 250 gourds, 6 poles, 2traps
Posts: 2008
Joined: Mon Jan 26, 2004 5:35 pm
Location: Texas/San Antonio

Looks like a more or less normal return of ASY's so far around here, meaning apparently near-to-full occupancy at our school site. I haven't seen confirmed subbies yet (one probable last week). Actually I dont get much time to look at the colonies though, I wont know occupancy for sure until nest checks next week.

Mike Scully
...if the gentlemen of Virginia shall send us a dozen of their sons, we would take great care in their education, instruct them in all we know, and make men of them. Canasatego 1744
Peggy Riley
Posts: 885
Joined: Tue Nov 11, 2003 1:21 pm
Location: TX/Tolar

No subbies here yet but I am about 80% now. There were 5 new birds here last night at dark so they are still moving. Don't think they were mine since they wouldn't enter any gourd.

PMCA Member
2017 101 pair
Posts: 728
Joined: Tue Apr 08, 2008 7:13 am
Location: Buda, TX, south of Austin

I have noticed the same thing here. It seems there should be more birds right now then we have based on the number of pairs last season. I was thinking some of them either left the site or did not make it due to the drought.
There will hardly be any returning from the 2011 crop so I was hoping we get the subadults from the 2010 crop back in 2012. we had a number of new guys show up last April and we had no space for them.
One slept on a nearby tree which I had never seen a martin do and one slept outside on a gourd arm aganist the pole too. A number of them just left after dusk with a full house and no where to go. I felt so bad.
Hope more are coming in April.
2008~(1st yr) 4 pairs, 11 to 12 fledged
2009~(2nd yr) 9 pairs, 41 fledged
2010~(3rd year) 11 pairs. 50 fledged
2011~(4th year) 20 pairs, 23 out of 23 gourds Martin occupied, 3 fledged, the rest died in the drought. (1 new Blue Bird, 3 BB fledged.)
2012~ 26 pairs, approx. 100-110 fledged
Adam Romain
Posts: 289
Joined: Sat Apr 24, 2004 5:40 pm
Location: Texas, Fulshear

I would say I'm seeing the same as Emil.

I haven't seen any SY's as of yet, but they are hard to spot with the short time I've had to view my colony. But I'm guessing I have about 35 pair, probably more, at this point and that seems about right. Lots of martins have been arriving for the last week. I would say we've doubled in numbers over the last week or 10 days.
Posts: 417
Joined: Sun Apr 30, 2006 5:41 pm
Location: TEXAS/Weatherford

I started slow with only one male here for about 2 weeks & now I think all my males from last year are here & maybe a couple of new ASYs as well. I keep thinking I have a subbie but one of my mature females sounds just like the males! LOL I haven't seen a subbie but I might end up with a full modified MSS-12 house...I think there are 7 or 8 males claiming compartments. Only one so far in the modified 24 castle. Several new arrivals of females in the last few days. They are squabbling as much as the males!
Sure hope y'all's(Sparky, Matt, apundt) numbers increase soon!!!
I am hoping for 20 pairs but if the SYs didn't make it...might not happen this year!
Take Care!!

2009--1 ASY & 1 SY Pair
2010--6 Pairs
2011--11 Successful Pairs + 1 Late Pair that lost their brood to heat!
2012--18 ASY Pairs & 1 SY Pair---104 eggs so far! 1 SY nest lost to infanticide! :o(
Posts: 188
Joined: Tue Mar 04, 2008 8:14 am
Location: Richmond, TX

At Smith Elementary our birds returned really early, They were here before I could get up the last house that needed repairs. We have at least as many as last year; they are just starting in earnest to build now so I will have a better idea next week. But I counted 15 nests for now.
Posts: 143
Joined: Thu Mar 18, 2010 1:01 pm
Location: Hiawatha, Kansas

I live in NE Kansas, Hiawatha which is in Brown County. My distant cousin lives near here and she has reported a scout this week.
I havent seen or heard a single martin (yet) here in town.
I remember when late was really late...last year I didn't see a scout until April 2.

I am not too worried about them coming, they just need to take their time, as in this part of Kansas it always seems to be coldest in the winter and hottest in the summer.
As strange and unpredictable this weather has been so far this year, I am hoping we dont get a late freeze.

Next year I am leaning toward gourds as my housing, then gradually doing away with my S & K.

Good luck to everyone for a great martin year!
Darryl Sparlin
Posts: 167
Joined: Tue Nov 11, 2003 4:01 pm
Location: Webb City, Mo

I had 11 go to roost Friday evening. This morning at dawn I heard the
birds sounding like something was going on. So I went outside to see and
there were a bunch of birds flying around. At best I counted 25. I know
at least that many roosted tonight.
Darryl Sparlin
Posts: 1889
Joined: Wed Jan 28, 2004 11:04 pm
Location: Texas/Katy

I had a subadult male today, so they are still coming. With the lack of cold weather this winter, there are a lot of HOSP's. I've been wasting them left and right. Trapped 5 starlings today. 1 in a Troyer gourd with WDC, the others in my Controller.
Those HOSP's are really smart. After years of observing them, I took pretty much the day checking them out. The males will go into the neck of the gourd, but no further. When the female returns she is the one that hits the trigger wire and the door closes. The male is "Chicken Little". On other Troyer gourd traps, in both cases neither will enter after I set the trap. Fustrating. They must notice something is not right.

Need more martins to chase off the HOSP's!
I'm a "nestcamaholic" Is 18 hours a day a bad thing? (I have 2 this year, luckily I have 2 eyes!)
Scott D.- La
Posts: 823
Joined: Thu Jun 08, 2006 8:35 am
Location: Louisiana

It's been a great year here so far, in regard's to number's. They were here in large quantities early, and continue to pour in. I am probably getting low on cavities. I saw 2 SY Females yesterday, and 1 SY Male with several still attempting to get in at dark so, many more to come still. They will have to go elsewhere to find a place to breed.
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