Switching from condos to individual houses

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mikeinkaty
Posts: 28
Joined: Sun Mar 23, 2014 9:54 am
Location: TX/Katy

I’ve had 2 of the 6x6 aluminum condo style Martin boxes for probably 25 years. They are now in pretty bad shape. I’m making individual houses of aluminum that are 7” diameter by 6” tall cylinder with a conical top. Question is about the perch. Do they need one? I’ve seen a lot of gourds that have no perch. Of course my 6x6 boxes had a porch. What about a piece of 5/8” plastic pipe about 4” long. Would that work? I could attach a piece of 14” diameter aluminum flashing to the bottom. That would give a 3” porch all around. Any ideas appreciated.

Mike
Ed Svetich-WI
Posts: 798
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.

Mike,

Sounds like a good project. However, the inside dimensions are barely larger than a 6x6 cavity which is way too small. With such a small cavity, adding a perch would only offer a predator an easy opportunity to access the nest. Have you considered any other designs that may offer a larger yet safer cavity? How about a horizontal alignment with a longer length that may offer more protection?

Good luck.

Ed
mikeinkaty
Posts: 28
Joined: Sun Mar 23, 2014 9:54 am
Location: TX/Katy

I’m using 7” diameter. Much better than 6”.
Ed Svetich-WI
Posts: 798
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.

Mike,

Not a lot better. 6 inch x 6 inch=36 square inches. A 7 inch cylinder = 38.46 square inches.(3.14 × 3.5 inches squared). A 6 inch x 12 inch expanded cavity in an aluminum Trio Martin house =72 square inches and since it is 12 inches deep, it provides additional protection from predators.

My gourds are 10 inches in diameter. 3.14 x 5 inches squared = 78.5 square inches.

All the best in thd future,

Ed
John & Linda - KY
Posts: 599
Joined: Wed Nov 12, 2003 10:19 pm
Location: Kentucky/Hawesville

Addressing the original question, regarding porches: If you use round entrances porches are not a necessity. For most SRE's porches are not a necessity, but they make it easier on the martins to enter. If they are used the perch should be no more than 1/8" below the bottom of the entrance. For all entrances, the martins love porches and other places to perch. -- John
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