Purple Martins in Ontario, Canada

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catoscar
Posts: 27
Joined: Tue Apr 05, 2016 6:53 pm
Location: Stoney Creek, Ontario, Canada
Martin Colony History: 10 Year landlord. Currently have 4 Trio houses and 12 Troyer gourds.

I just wanted to share some information that I had my first scout arrive in Stoney Creek Ontario Canada on April 3rd which is about a week earlier then normal. I also had a couple other Martin's arrive on April 5th and they looked cold and tired. We have had a real cold spell here the past few days with temperatures in the low -11c and snow and strong winds. Hopefully it warms up a bit over the next few days so the Martin's can feed. Yesterday I was able to walk right up to my raised house and look at the Martin's sitting out on the ledge trying to warm up in the sun. They then flew from my raised house to my lowered house and sat again on the ledge attempting to warm up in the sun. I was able to snap a picture of the 3 Martin's huddling together. I am keeping my fingers crossed that the weather soon changes here and warmer weather arrives again.
catoscar
Posts: 27
Joined: Tue Apr 05, 2016 6:53 pm
Location: Stoney Creek, Ontario, Canada
Martin Colony History: 10 Year landlord. Currently have 4 Trio houses and 12 Troyer gourds.

Purple Martins Arrive April 5th 2016.jpg
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Here is a photo that I was able to snap with the 3 martins huddled up together trying to stay warm in the sun. :)
catoscar
Posts: 27
Joined: Tue Apr 05, 2016 6:53 pm
Location: Stoney Creek, Ontario, Canada
Martin Colony History: 10 Year landlord. Currently have 4 Trio houses and 12 Troyer gourds.

One more picture :grin:
Archer
Posts: 757
Joined: Fri Mar 11, 2011 1:09 pm
Location: Manitoba/Altona
Martin Colony History: six pair in 2014, have grown to 52 pairs in 2017.

Have you considered feeding them, they will likely starve if you don't. Here is link to a recent article on the forum that will help you get started. https://www.purplemartin.org/forum/view ... =2&t=31493
2011- first year trying, a few visitors.
2012-One ASY pair, raised two young, lots of subby visitors. So thankfull.
2013-daily subby visits.
2014-Six SY pairs
2015-18 pair, 83 fledglings
2016-36 pair, 147 fledglings
2017-52 pairs, 192 fledglings.
2018-60 pair, 246 fledglings.
2019-59 pair, 238 fledglings.
BrendaVR
Posts: 31
Joined: Mon May 12, 2014 12:44 pm
Location: Ontario/Burlington

Seconded.

I would be feeding like mad. It's been super cold and the snow is thick...(hopefully you haven't lost some already). The sumac here is half stripped of its seeds just from the cold snap this week (over 20 robins on it today), the birds are hungry!

PS: Glad to see another Ontario poster! (I'm still dreaming, have no Martins yet, but someday...)
Insectivore Villa
Posts: 131
Joined: Thu Jan 14, 2016 4:55 pm
Location: Blenheim, Ontario

There seems to be more and more of us Ontario "ites" out there...hang in there, warm weather coming, keep tossing those crickets or eggs at them to keep them alive. Mine have not showed here (Blenheim ON) yet, I hope they are at an old friend of mine ten miles away, he is retired and feeds and takes care of those early birds so well (thanks Lyle, luv you man).
So to all my southern landlord friends, I am missing about 56 birds for sure, hopefully more, but can you hold them for say 10-14 days and maybe feed them a bit too for me please and thanks... I promise to send them back to you around august 25 or so. I vow to do the best I can to send back 160 or more in return, seems fair hey? A few crickets and eggs and you get like 200% return on your investment...thanks in advance.
Henry W.
2015, 28 pair, 102 fledged
2016, 39 pair, 154 fledged
2017, 44 pair, 164 fledged
2018, 68 pair, 218 fledged
catoscar
Posts: 27
Joined: Tue Apr 05, 2016 6:53 pm
Location: Stoney Creek, Ontario, Canada
Martin Colony History: 10 Year landlord. Currently have 4 Trio houses and 12 Troyer gourds.

I was able to pick up some crickets and meal worms at the local pet store. Will try feeding the Martins later today. Does anyone know if it would be ok just to lower my house and place some cricket / mealworms in a small tray and place on my martin house in front of the entrance holes by the railings and then raise the house? Thanks
Archer
Posts: 757
Joined: Fri Mar 11, 2011 1:09 pm
Location: Manitoba/Altona
Martin Colony History: six pair in 2014, have grown to 52 pairs in 2017.

That would be worth a try. I had some late nesters last year that were struggling to feed their chicks. I put about 50 crickets in their compartment they were using and by the next day they were gone. These birds came later in the season and were not trained. If you know which compartment they are using, and block of the others, they would find them. They might also find them where you had indicated, especially if it is on the sunny side of the house. Thanks for trying. You would want to freeze them first so that they wouldn't get away, unless they are already dead.
2011- first year trying, a few visitors.
2012-One ASY pair, raised two young, lots of subby visitors. So thankfull.
2013-daily subby visits.
2014-Six SY pairs
2015-18 pair, 83 fledglings
2016-36 pair, 147 fledglings
2017-52 pairs, 192 fledglings.
2018-60 pair, 246 fledglings.
2019-59 pair, 238 fledglings.
catoscar
Posts: 27
Joined: Tue Apr 05, 2016 6:53 pm
Location: Stoney Creek, Ontario, Canada
Martin Colony History: 10 Year landlord. Currently have 4 Trio houses and 12 Troyer gourds.

Well after being excited for the first 3 Martins that arrived earlier this week this cold spell has put a real damper on things. Today after work I went and lowered my Martin house to place some crickets and meal worms for the Martins to feed on and unfortunately found one of the Martins dead in one of the compartments. The other 2 Martins are nowhere to be seen. I have been housing Martins for the past 9 years now and this by far was their earliest arrival and a first for me in terms of finding one dead to start the season. It is really upsetting as mother nature and her earlier warm spell has thrown some of the Martins into a false security. Now with the freezing temperatures the past few days and nights all Martins in this area are struggling to survive. Hopefully the next batch don't arrive for a few more days as temperatures by next week are supposed to start warming up. Just an overall sad situation.
Insectivore Villa
Posts: 131
Joined: Thu Jan 14, 2016 4:55 pm
Location: Blenheim, Ontario

Put the container of crickets and mealworms right into the house/room they are staying in, block some of the other compartments, put a hand warmer in the room below,raise the house and pray they make it. That is what I would try in these tough days. One of my more experienced friends feeds them crickets soaked in warm water when the sun is out and they are trying to warm up up. Then puts the leftovers into their compartments and then just hopes...some eat the crickets, others like scrambled eggs more.
I had one die last year too, it was a three year old banded male hatched not ten miles from my house. Made me think...do the best you can, but whatever you do, Mother Nature can be a female dog and weeds out the weak, the stupid, and infirm for a reason we will never understand. Just do the best you can
Henry W.
2015, 28 pair, 102 fledged
2016, 39 pair, 154 fledged
2017, 44 pair, 164 fledged
2018, 68 pair, 218 fledged
Petermcc~Canada
Posts: 31
Joined: Sat Mar 20, 2004 9:21 am
Location: New Brunswick, Canada

Wooden housing is a lot warmer than metal housing. Most northern landlords use wooden housing. It helps early arriving martins
survive those cold spells.
Petermcc~Canada
Posts: 31
Joined: Sat Mar 20, 2004 9:21 am
Location: New Brunswick, Canada

Hello, if you search the Forum for "Best Martin Housing For The North Part of PM Range" there is some very helpful information.
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