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Posts: 69
Joined: Mon May 18, 2015 9:54 am
Location: Eastern nc

Could decoys actually attract hawks? Do more harm than good?
Posts: 189
Joined: Sat Apr 29, 2006 8:45 am
Location: Indiana/Scottsburg

In my opinion, no. Movement is the greatest attractant of sight hunters. The decoy likely doesn't register the hawks attack mode. But when the hawk is attracted by all the live martins, the last to flush upon attack is the prime target. That's why I use decoys.
Landlording since 1996 in beautiful southern Indiana.
Posts: 69
Joined: Mon May 18, 2015 9:54 am
Location: Eastern nc

Posts: 78
Joined: Tue Mar 01, 2016 11:26 pm
Location: Turner Valley, AB
Martin Colony History: 2016 - 1 pair - 4 fledged
2017 - 4 pair - 16 fledged
2018 - 7 pair - 24 fledged
Moved and starting over in 2019

I used a pair of decoys last year and believe they made the difference in getting my first pair to commit. Along with a Dawn Song CD
Posts: 2174
Joined: Tue Nov 18, 2003 3:06 am
Location: Grand Prairie,Tx

For decades I have had up Decoys (Many Decoys), They help during Hawk attacks and give the martins a Chance to bolt to freedom thus saving martin Lives , In answer to your Question , When the Martins come so do the Hawks .....This year I did not Put up an Decoys and Lost several Martins to Hawk attacks , IMO , I believe that Having up Decoys is Good Thing...can't hurt...may save a Lot of martin Lives. Just Remember Martins are so Loud & Vocal Hawks are going to follow & Find them Immediately. Besides Having up decoys Building a Cage around your Housing/and or Gourd Rack May provide you Max Protection.
Pictures Taken with Canon Rebel XT Digital using a Sigma 50-500 Long Lens.

Wishing everyone a Great Martin Year
Happy Martining for 2020 to everyone,

Posts: 319
Joined: Mon May 12, 2014 1:02 pm
Location: Western KY
Martin Colony History:

Tried to attract PMs since 2004; began a more ernest attempt in 2014.

2018 — 3 pairs: 1 ASY pair & 1 SY pair in the Trio; 1 SY pair in a supergourd on the gourd multi-rack.

2019 — 6 pairs

2020 — In progress

Current housing consists of two modified Trio M12Ks at 20' and a round gourd rack at 20'.

We've also provided housing for bluebirds, Carolina wrens, house wrens, Carolina chickadees, tufted titmice, great-crested flycatchers and northern flickers for ~15 years.

philsand wrote:Could decoys actually attract hawks? Do more harm than good?
We've put up decoys for the last few years hoping to attract martins. The decoys have never look like they'd taken a "hit" during the day or the night. My husband watched a hawk sitting very close to the housing but he showed no interest in the decoys. (I've seen other types of birds perch on top of them too). I agree with what the others said though -- during the commotion of an attack I could easily see a hawk going for the decoy instead of the real martin.
Posts: 93
Joined: Sun Mar 05, 2017 10:35 am
Location: Raynham MA. 02767
Martin Colony History: 2016, put Troyer pole with 6 units Horizontal with Conley 11 Tunnels.
Had some visits (two sittings) last year. A visit this year 2017.

philsand wrote:Could decoys actually attract hawks? Do more harm than good?
Only my second year and haven't had any permanent or mating Martins. But last year I watched a hawk attach a decoy, then going tumbling through the air till he recovered and flew away as I sat there laughing my butt offf!!! :lol: :grin: :eek: :shock: 8) Still waiting for my first martins.

Posts: 69
Joined: Mon May 18, 2015 9:54 am
Location: Eastern nc

Placing decoys on the system is not an option now. Cool weather and females incubating. Has any one tried placing decoys on a Sheppard s hook?
Jim 1990
Posts: 245
Joined: Sun Mar 28, 2004 11:08 am
Location: Fort wayne IN

I put decoys on my gourd racks and it does help as we were expecting high winds and I lowered my gourd racks and was walking back to the house the martins bolted to the air and a hawk was attacking one of the decoys I clapped my hands and he flew off . Then I watched and the hawk came back for a second try at another decoy then flew and set on top of my tree swallow box he looked puzzled then flew away.
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