Dropping out of the sky...

Welcome to the internet's gathering place for Purple Martin enthusiasts
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Stingray
Posts: 351
Joined: Wed May 11, 2005 9:45 pm
Location: Plantation/Florida

While the whole martin landlord experience has provided me great enjoyment since 2005, the title of this post is my favorite part.
First arrivals are a close second.
I like to sit out in the late afternoon and watch them feeding, hundreds of feet up in the air. Graceful, agile, and swift. True aerial acrobats.
All of a sudden they fold their wings and drop like a rock and gracefully land on their gourds/house.

How about you?
Is there any particular part of being a martin landlord that you enjoy the most?
Have a great season!
mickey53
Posts: 13
Joined: Tue Jun 11, 2013 4:46 pm
Location: Ontario/Prince Edward County

Seeing the first baby's head stick out one of the openings in our martin house. Cecile
chickadee
Posts: 1126
Joined: Fri Mar 25, 2011 3:02 pm
Location: ohio

Wow I have so many. I use to love guessing how many pairs I would get that year as my colony was growing. But since I have a full house and stopped adding racks that part is over :cry: . Now I would say I just love watching them sit on their porches and mingle and take joy and pride knowing I have apart in helping them be able to do that in a safe environment.
2008 first year 1 pair. 2009 3 pair. 2010 7 pair. 2011 20 pair . 2012 44 pair 280 eggs 210 fledged. 2013 67 pair. 2014?
4th Gen Martin Fan
Posts: 1491
Joined: Thu Jul 04, 2013 1:19 pm
Location: TN/Collierville
Martin Colony History: I have been exposed to purple martin sounds in utero when my mother went out to get my father away from his martin colony.
I played around the martin colony every summer and watched as my father maintained his colony. In the late 50's until the 70's he did not notice European Starlings in south Texas.
When old enough, I helped maintain his colony. My primary task was eliminating English House Sparrows with a 1956 Benjamin 317 .177 air rifle.
When I settled into my own home, I started my first colony with an original Trio Castle and Trio Grandpa. When I moved again, I did not put up any martin houses. Frustration with European Starlings in the Southeast US was overwhelming.
Found PMCA Forum and learned about modern enlarged compartments and SREHs.
Inherited my father's last martin house, a Trio Grandma, modified it to modern specifications and have had good results since then.

I like the swept wing dive also.
Reminds me of a General Dynamics F-111 with its wings swept back.
There are Forum members who can better comment on an example of a martin in a dive.
Mark.
Mark.
Firm believer in HOSP/EUST Control, Enlarged Compartments, SREHs, Pole Predator Guards, Owl/Hawk Guards, Mite/Parasite Control, Housing Insulation, and Vents for Compartment Cooling.
PMCA Member.
Chuck4
Posts: 861
Joined: Mon May 16, 2011 10:05 am
Location: North MS
Martin Colony History: I started trying to attract Purple Martins in 2011. I got my first breeding pair in 2013.

2013-1 pair, 2014-4 pair, 2015-8 pair, 2016-12 pair 60 babies :-).

I feel joy form the sense of accomplishment I have from getting the martins at my colony to be there by offering them housing they feel safe in. I feel a bond with them, and I think they feel a bond with me.

It tickles me, seeing the lady martins in the morning (generally the males are out and about already) slowly sticking their heads out of the gourds to greet the day.

I consider it an honor that they dive to the ground in my yard to grab nesting materials.

Tonight I was sitting out back, and my founding male (King) sat out on his porch for a long time. We just sat there. He looked so content and proud! He derserves the credit for getting my colony going. 8) I'm very proud of him!
PMCA Member
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Anthony Neira
Posts: 1317
Joined: Wed Jan 15, 2014 1:12 pm
Location: San Antonio /Texas
Martin Colony History: Started in 1992 From neighbors old 1950-60's colonies. Have 8 Trio 6 Room Houses, 4 MPP Poles, 1 Heath Deluxe Gourd with Troyer Porch, 8 NatureLine Gourds with Troyer Porches, 5 Troyer Horizontals ,& 2 S&K 11" WITH Troyer Porches ready for 2019 Season !

Great stuff everyone!! Yup Stingray, that drop is my fav. I once had a visitor yell "that bird died??!!" :lol:, when I stopped laughing, I could barely say "no", I should have said "yes"...But like I've said here before, I call them "Hot rods" when they do that. Hey, Mark, or like an F-14? :wink:
4th Gen Martin Fan
Posts: 1491
Joined: Thu Jul 04, 2013 1:19 pm
Location: TN/Collierville
Martin Colony History: I have been exposed to purple martin sounds in utero when my mother went out to get my father away from his martin colony.
I played around the martin colony every summer and watched as my father maintained his colony. In the late 50's until the 70's he did not notice European Starlings in south Texas.
When old enough, I helped maintain his colony. My primary task was eliminating English House Sparrows with a 1956 Benjamin 317 .177 air rifle.
When I settled into my own home, I started my first colony with an original Trio Castle and Trio Grandpa. When I moved again, I did not put up any martin houses. Frustration with European Starlings in the Southeast US was overwhelming.
Found PMCA Forum and learned about modern enlarged compartments and SREHs.
Inherited my father's last martin house, a Trio Grandma, modified it to modern specifications and have had good results since then.

Anthony,
The Grumman F-14 Tomcat is an excellent example of the martin in swept wing configuration!
In reference to the post about your martins coming in for a landing when the porches are full of martins already, "Negative, Ghostrider, the pattern is full."
Mark.
Mark.
Firm believer in HOSP/EUST Control, Enlarged Compartments, SREHs, Pole Predator Guards, Owl/Hawk Guards, Mite/Parasite Control, Housing Insulation, and Vents for Compartment Cooling.
PMCA Member.
Vern1
Posts: 471
Joined: Fri Aug 03, 2007 2:06 pm
Location: Pettytown, Texas, US of A

The way a group of them always seem to follow my Wife and I as we drive around the farm in the electric golf cart.
Where ever we go, look around and they are nearby.

While the vain part of me would like to thing they love me this much and want to be near me, the realist in me knows they are simply chasing the flying insects we stir up!
Cheers,
Joe
2015 - 40 cavities - 37 pair - fledged 172
2016 - 40 cavities - 38 pair - fledged 192
Hosting Purple Martins since 1976...Managing since 2006.
pmlover
Posts: 806
Joined: Thu Apr 04, 2013 3:30 pm
Location: OH/New Concord

I have all the similar wonderful feelings like the above, However I got a new on this year when two nights here it was 19 degrees at night with a windchill of around zero. I was out there outing over100 handwarmers in the houses coming close to frozebite. WhatAllowed me to finish was God and God's beautiful creations letting me pat them while I put the hand warmers in the house. One pair snuggled against my hand holding the warmer. I actually had tears running down my face thinking of how hard it was for them coming all the way from Brazil to this fowl weather. I also felt so bad for them when they were iced in one day and it took me 3 hours to deice the holes.
Dick
2015 69 pairs 418 eggs 396 fledged
2019 I have 148 openings now
2016 100 pairs 600 babies fledged added another t-14 and have 126 openings now
2015 Jun 24 360 babies and 58 eggs also found one that had died
2017 632 babies 11died and 20 were killed by hawks
2015 74 pairs and 9 eggs 5/14
2010 3pairss
]JOINED PMCA JUNE 6,2018
2018 651 babies 5 hawk kills 11 floater kills 25 died in houses and 610 fledged

2014 80 pairs 283 babies 282 fledged one died
4th Gen Martin Fan
Posts: 1491
Joined: Thu Jul 04, 2013 1:19 pm
Location: TN/Collierville
Martin Colony History: I have been exposed to purple martin sounds in utero when my mother went out to get my father away from his martin colony.
I played around the martin colony every summer and watched as my father maintained his colony. In the late 50's until the 70's he did not notice European Starlings in south Texas.
When old enough, I helped maintain his colony. My primary task was eliminating English House Sparrows with a 1956 Benjamin 317 .177 air rifle.
When I settled into my own home, I started my first colony with an original Trio Castle and Trio Grandpa. When I moved again, I did not put up any martin houses. Frustration with European Starlings in the Southeast US was overwhelming.
Found PMCA Forum and learned about modern enlarged compartments and SREHs.
Inherited my father's last martin house, a Trio Grandma, modified it to modern specifications and have had good results since then.

Dick,
That is dedication and the reason why you have a thriving colony.
Just goes to show that you can still have tender moments with the birds in a larger colony.
Wish I could have been there to help you. Must have been cold for you also.
Did the martins survive either near catastrophes?
Mark.
Mark.
Firm believer in HOSP/EUST Control, Enlarged Compartments, SREHs, Pole Predator Guards, Owl/Hawk Guards, Mite/Parasite Control, Housing Insulation, and Vents for Compartment Cooling.
PMCA Member.
pmlover
Posts: 806
Joined: Thu Apr 04, 2013 3:30 pm
Location: OH/New Concord

4th gen they all survived and are thriving now thanks so much for the compliment
Dick
2015 69 pairs 418 eggs 396 fledged
2019 I have 148 openings now
2016 100 pairs 600 babies fledged added another t-14 and have 126 openings now
2015 Jun 24 360 babies and 58 eggs also found one that had died
2017 632 babies 11died and 20 were killed by hawks
2015 74 pairs and 9 eggs 5/14
2010 3pairss
]JOINED PMCA JUNE 6,2018
2018 651 babies 5 hawk kills 11 floater kills 25 died in houses and 610 fledged

2014 80 pairs 283 babies 282 fledged one died
Craig Dyer
Posts: 500
Joined: Fri May 13, 2005 2:24 pm
Location: Nevada, TX
Martin Colony History: Area is rural. Offer 28 compartments...metal housing (Lonestar Goliad) & Supergourds all w/crescent entrance holes. Purple martins are abundant here and eager for quality, well maintained, safe housing. Expect near 100% occupancy this season.

Yes, watching them tuck & dive is a thrill...imagine what it must be like on their end!

Amusing that when I walk under the martin housing & begin to lower or raise the house (for whatever reason) martins immediately appear, seemingly out of nowhere. They circle directly overhead and sing. They are obviously watching...from somewhere. It seems like a greeting of sorts.
Craig Dyer
Stingray
Posts: 351
Joined: Wed May 11, 2005 9:45 pm
Location: Plantation/Florida

Thank you all for your replies.
Nice to see that others like myself enjoy that "drop".
We provide housing for these little guys but they provide sooooooooo much more.

Keep the replies coming. I'm enjoying them.

:)
Last edited by Stingray on Tue Apr 22, 2014 6:50 pm, edited 1 time in total.
Have a great season!
Stingray
Posts: 351
Joined: Wed May 11, 2005 9:45 pm
Location: Plantation/Florida

Craig Dyer wrote:Yes, watching them tuck & dive is a thrill...imagine what it must be like on their end!
Hadn't thought about that but you're absolutely right.
Must be incredible!!



Thanks for your response.
:)
Have a great season!
Chuck4
Posts: 861
Joined: Mon May 16, 2011 10:05 am
Location: North MS
Martin Colony History: I started trying to attract Purple Martins in 2011. I got my first breeding pair in 2013.

2013-1 pair, 2014-4 pair, 2015-8 pair, 2016-12 pair 60 babies :-).

It is TOTALLY amazing to see them dive in like missiles to the housing. Once, I saw a Martin literally fly in, at what seemed to be full speed, to the entrance hole! :shock: He immediately turned around and poked his head out of the entrance. :grin:
PMCA Member
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JudyAV
Posts: 35
Joined: Wed Mar 26, 2014 3:50 pm
Location: NC/New Bern

I love watching that 'dive" too! I can sit and watch for hours on end and get nothing accomplished around here LOL
taxidermy lady
Posts: 2989
Joined: Sun Mar 02, 2014 10:21 am
Location: IL/Ellis Grove
Martin Colony History: Started trying to attract purple martins in 2012! It's finally happened in 2017! 5 years!!! ASY male and SY female came May 1st, fledged 5 babies!

Yeah Joe, They use to follow me up to my parents on the four-wheeler when I went to go check on them. They lived just right over the hill. I would leave here and see them flying over the open field and land up there til I left. They are a lot of fun to have around.
Sharon from southern Illinois
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