Robin Nest

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GeneP
Posts: 523
Joined: Mon Jul 23, 2007 7:35 am
Location: Kansas, Lawrence
Martin Colony History: 1 gourd rack with 24 gourd capacity. 2018, my 11th year hosting martins.
18 pair in 2017.

A Robin is building a nest on the arm of my gourd rack. I have about half a dozen Martins in residence. They are gone when she is building and she is long gone when they return. Robins have nested within 20 feet of the gourd rack in the past but now it's on the rack itself. I know Robins to be territorial but more to cats and people than other birds.

I've chased off House Finches in the past but that was because they use the gourds. I'm curious to see how this goes. The Martins have used the gourd rack going on 12 years. What are your thoughts?
PMCA Member, Single Gourd Rack, 2019 marks 12 years hosting martins.
Archer
Posts: 760
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.

Should be ok, they are not a threat to each other. Let us know how it turns out. I have seen robins and martins perch together, no problem.
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.
2020-62 pair.
Larry Kronemeyer
Posts: 494
Joined: Mon May 22, 2006 5:27 pm
Location: Illinois/Millstadt

GeneP
This could be interesting. The robin shouldn't bother the martins. I have lots of robins nesting near my martins immediate area. One loves the gutter elbow on the neighbors house. Never had one try to nest on the martin housing though. The upside for the robin is the lucrative availability of dropped insects when the martins are feeding their young, plus if you tray feed the martins there is food. Could be good, could be bad. Robins have a distinctive alarm just for hawks, hard to described unless you hear it, but very reliable. On the other hand, the nest will attract all sorts of predators to the gourd rack being out in the open.
Off to the side somewhere I would welcome the robin, they are vigilant sentries of the neighborhood. Personally, I would discourage one from building on the martin housing. Offer a robin shelf nearby and see if your resident robin may use it.

Larry&Judy
Larry and Judy Kronemeyer
est. 1999
1-12 compartment Trendsetter and 4 gourds(crescents)
1 T-14 and 4 gourds (crescents)
12 gourd rack (crescents)
Member PMCA
ZAGAR
Posts: 6
Joined: Sat Mar 02, 2019 8:37 am
Location: Holly Michigan

Robins are real territorial, I've seen them go after any bird close to the nest.. I'm in Michigan, happens to be our state bird...
GeneP
Posts: 523
Joined: Mon Jul 23, 2007 7:35 am
Location: Kansas, Lawrence
Martin Colony History: 1 gourd rack with 24 gourd capacity. 2018, my 11th year hosting martins.
18 pair in 2017.

Thanks all. I placed a camera to watch and to livestream. I saw a Grackle check out the nest but I'm not sure if the robins will stay. Haven't seen them at the nest. I wasn't too concerned about the robins bothering the martins. My martins won't begin nest building until may and the young robins would likely fledge by that time.

You know how martins are, they spend a little time around the rack in the morning and are gone the rest of the day. I'll keep watching the cam and see if nest building gets completed or not.

Larry, I do have two nest shelves up and the robins have used them in the past. I also have an artificial barn swallow nest the House Finches use every year. Not great habitat for barn swallows in my neighborhood. Thanks again.
PMCA Member, Single Gourd Rack, 2019 marks 12 years hosting martins.
Dave Duit
Posts: 1852
Joined: Tue Nov 25, 2003 2:02 pm
Location: Iowa / Nevada
Martin Colony History: In 2020, 60 pair with 285 fledged youngsters. 83 total cavities available, 58 Troyer Horizontal gourds and 4 modified deep trio metal house units, 1 fallout shelter, owl cages around all units. Martin educator and speaker. President and founder of the Iowa Purple Martin Organization. Please visit www.iamartin.org and join.

No problem, other than the robins like to eat scrambled eggs.
Mite control, heat venting, predator protection and additional feeding during bad weather add up to success.
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