Nesting material thoughts

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Posts: 100
Joined: Mon Apr 17, 2006 10:16 am
Location: South Carolina, Conway

Would thin plastic sheets run thru a shredder work for nesting material? Over the years, I've seen the martins use lots of plastic items........Just a thought.

BTW, I usually use pine straw.......and another post said chop it with a mulching mower......sound good....will try it soon.
Aaron S Piver
Conway, SC
Louise Chambers
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Posts: 6211
Joined: Tue Nov 04, 2003 1:07 pm
Location: Corpus Christi, TX

I wouldn't advise using thin shredded plastic - too much risk of birds getting legs or feet caught. If we see something they've brought into a nest that could be harmful, out it comes - they do pick up odd things sometimes. String and pieces of twine, etc, are not safe unless cut into short pieces.
Last edited by Louise Chambers on Wed Jan 30, 2013 10:44 am, edited 1 time in total.
Ed Svetich-WI
Posts: 809
Joined: Tue Jan 13, 2004 10:05 pm
Location: Brooks, Wi (McGinnis Lake)
Martin Colony History: 24 Super and Excluder Gourds on two gourd racks, all SREH. Full occupancy. My philosophy is to maximize fledge % with existing cavities rather than adding gourds to grow colony, thus providing opportunities for new colony expansion. Fledge over 100 nestlings yearly from 24 gourds. Band nestlings in cooperation with state university. 2019 Adendum: Reduced colony size to 12 gourds to focus on more intensive management regimen.

If I remember correctly, the post that you are referring to was talking about pine needle straw from something other than a white pine. I have several different types of pines and one advantage of white pine straw is the "soft" texture of the needles. Red pine straw is rigid and as sharp as a needle, obviously two traits that would not necessarily be desirable in a martin nest with young. I have found that it is not necessary to modify white pine straw. Others may disagree.

I agree with Louise, stick with natural nest materials.

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