Oyster shell feeder on same pole below Martin house

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jerryd14
Posts: 2
Joined: Tue Apr 13, 2010 3:10 pm
Location: VA/Urbanna

Does anyone know of a reason not to have a feeder attached on the same pole but below the Martin house, obviously considering it is not to heavy, ect, which it is not.

Just wanted to be assured it will not cause fear for Martins, or create any problems for the birds.
Dave Duit
Posts: 1703
Joined: Tue Nov 25, 2003 2:02 pm
Location: Iowa / Nevada
Martin Colony History: In 2019, 54 pair with 218 fledged youngsters. 83 total compartments available, 58 Troyer Horizontal gourds and 4 modified trio metal house units, owl cages around all units. Martin educator and speaker. President of the Iowa Purple Martin Organization. Please visit www.iamartin.org and join.

Hi Jerry,
The only thing i could think of is that if you provide scrambled eggs, with the oyster shells it may attract starlings.
Mite control, heat venting, predator protection and additional feeding during bad weather add up to success.
daveh
Posts: 653
Joined: Wed Oct 22, 2008 7:40 am
Location: Kingsville Mo.

If you do nest checks the feeder may get in the way and not allow you to lower the house all the way down. I have a feed station on it's 0wn separate pole about 7-8 ft high so it's easy to maintain on a step ladder.

dave
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Bill Hyde
Posts: 287
Joined: Sat May 08, 2004 8:59 am
Location: Illinois/Roscoe

I posed a similar question years ago on this forum, and Steve Kroenke posted a great reply when he stated that female martins sometimes get mobbed by males at unprotected feeding trays supplied with egg shells and/or crushed oyster shells. As I recall his post, he strongly suggested that females get injured (and sometimes killed) if they cannot escape from such closed spaces.
PMCA member
2011 - 1 SY pair w/ 2 HY fledged
2012 - 5 breeding pairs
2013 - 14 nesting pairs and several singles
2014 - 8 nesting pairs
2015 - 5 nesting prs w/mostly ASY parents
mikeinkaty
Posts: 28
Joined: Sun Mar 23, 2014 9:54 am
Location: TX/Katy

" if they cannot escape from such closed spaces."

I don't understand this last sentence? If it's on top of a pole a few feet away from the house, how can it be a closed space??

Mike
sille59
Posts: 30
Joined: Tue Jun 07, 2011 3:09 pm
Location: Alabama/ Enterprise

I have divided plastic trays (tool or kitchen flatware) that are partitioned attached to the rack arms. These are attached with u-bolts bolted through the bottom of the tray around the arms. The trays will need small holes drilled in the bottom for drainage. I supply oyster and egg shells, as well as nest building materials in the trays. The only issues I have observed is the egg shells will blow out in windy conditions. I think they prefer picking up off the ground as to using a feeding tray however. It's more natural for them to get their grit and nesting materials off the ground. You should have no problems if you decide to mount it on your rack.

Tim
Sille59
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KathyF
Posts: 3518
Joined: Thu May 24, 2007 1:57 pm
Location: Missouri/Licking
Martin Colony History: Colony started - 2007 with one pair
As of 2018 - 84 cavities offered, max # of pairs hosted - 82.

I have mine separate for a couple of reasons:
1. I can raise/ lower / refill it without disturbing the martins in their housing - especially if it's during the morning / egg-laying time, or it's freezing rain / snow out and I don't want to unintentionally flush them out.

2. Other birds will come to your offerings (ie, barn swallows, tree swallows, bluebirds, etc.) and that could cause a lot of territorial fighting on your housing /pole, with the martins trying to protect their nests too.

3. And given that birds on the ground provide hawks with ample opportunity to snag one, I've got mine up about 9-10 feet on a separate post.

Just my opinion! :wink:
"Sometimes", said Pooh, "the smallest things take up the most room in your heart."
2016 - 82 pair
2015 - 76 pair
2014 - 75 pair
2013 - 75 pair
2012-72 pair
http://kathyfreeze.blogspot.com
jerryd14
Posts: 2
Joined: Tue Apr 13, 2010 3:10 pm
Location: VA/Urbanna

I should have been clearer on my explanation, I have 24 unit house on a pole with typical cable lowering rig, and the small feeder is about 8" in diameter, and it is hung from the bottom of the house and lowers and raises with the house.

I have not yet seen any birds go into the feeder, it only has crushed oyster shells, and I did not want to add any other food that may attract other birds.

Also, below all of this O have a 30 " predator guard to insure no pole climbers can come up to the feeder or birdhouse, so it can only be accessed by birds, or me.

I will wait a week or two and see how it goes, I just did not want to do anything to scare aware my new arrivals, as they have all not arrived here in Eastern Virginia yet.

Thanks to all and best wishes on your spring and summer.
Bill Hyde
Posts: 287
Joined: Sat May 08, 2004 8:59 am
Location: Illinois/Roscoe

To mikeinkaty:
Perhaps you did not read the same lead posting on this thread by Jerryd14 as I did about the feeding tray being attached below the (24-unit) martin house. My answer to his question attempted to recall remarks by Steve Kroenke a few years ago on a similar thread about this same subject. Steve, whose credentials on this forum are well known and credible, urged readers not to put eggshell and/or oyster shell trays in confined spaces on housing racks where female martins would be exposed to attack by other martins, especially males.
PMCA member
2011 - 1 SY pair w/ 2 HY fledged
2012 - 5 breeding pairs
2013 - 14 nesting pairs and several singles
2014 - 8 nesting pairs
2015 - 5 nesting prs w/mostly ASY parents
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