Dealing with neighbors while trapping sparrows

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brent
Posts: 178
Joined: Sat Feb 10, 2018 2:43 pm
Location: Raceland, Louisiana

Hi everyone,

I bought a repeating HOSP trap from PMCA and it works great. My problem now is that I noticed that my neighbor, who I asked to take down her feeders that were attracting many HOSP, has not been so polite to me after I starting using the trap. Before I bought and started using the trap I explained how the HOSP, although a cute little bird, will compete with my blue birds and martins for their nest cavity. I explained that the HOSP is not a native bird and has been a problem for many martin landlords across the country. Has any one experienced this with a neighbor before? How did you handle it?

Thanks,

Brent
JiminPa
Posts: 11
Joined: Tue Feb 07, 2017 2:30 pm
Location: Pa

Patience and more patience. You best remember and keep this in mind when trying to convert her thinking. There is nothing in this world that says she must defer to your request. Many people enjoy feeding and watching the English Sparrows. In her mind one species is as good as another. She apparently complied but didn't yet buy into the PM mission. Keep talking and be civil about it.
Time will tell.
On the other hand it will be hopeless to talk with my neighbor so I have discreetly diminished the sparrow population in our area. I just finished trapping 5 in a nest box where they had evicted a pair of Bluebirds.
Jim B
Matt F.
Posts: 3896
Joined: Mon Feb 28, 2005 9:48 am
Location: Houston, TX

You can send her this link (WARNING GRAPHIC):
http://www.sialis.org/hospattacks.htm
Fuzzmeister
Posts: 178
Joined: Mon Sep 25, 2017 9:02 pm
Location: Saskatchewan Canada

Brent I have to agree with Jim some people will only do and think what they want no matter what you say, I have a neighbor that has a purple Martin house and he does nothing to try and control the sparrows, his house is half full of sparrows and the rest are martins. I tried explaining the concept of sparrows competing with the martins but him and his wife believe that they cohabitate and get along just fine. I said if you get rid of the sparrows you would have more purple martins and they said they like all birds the same, so you may as well bang your head against the wall, same results. Cheers
4th Gen Martin Fan
Posts: 1483
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.

My experience has been similar to Fuzzmeister. I have been largely unsuccessful convincing people that English House Sparrows are an invasive, introduced, unprotected species that is destructive to cavity nesting, native species.
I have one neighbor who was releasing the HOSP from my Blaine's repeating trap. He claimed that they were suffering in an enclosed space and wanted to be free. The trap was in a shaded spot with food and water.
Don't tell him but I hid it behind a fence where he cannot see it. For him, ignorance is bliss. He likes the purple martins and bluebirds that are now thriving in our neighborhood.
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.
rrmartins
Posts: 1421
Joined: Tue Oct 19, 2010 8:04 am
Location: Round Rock, TX

Ignore them and do what’s good for your colony!!!
2019
T14
7 pair
25 fledged
Birds
Posts: 71
Joined: Fri Mar 22, 2019 11:35 am
Location: Northeast OH
Martin Colony History: 2017: nothing, 2018: discovered the PMCA, new house modifications 2019:Still no Martins. House sparrow and starling hate forever.

I Hate sparrows to the pont where I will sit outside for hours waiting for them to go inside the house. Just so I can trap them inside the bird house, then I put a trash bag over the entrance hole and catch them. After I catch them I will put them in my elevator trap and catch a whole bunch more. :twisted:
2017 :installed a Martin house hoping for Martins.
2018 :discovered the PMCA made modifications to a heath house .
2019 : Still no martins yet. House sparrow and starlings hate forever.
Tip :never give up
brent
Posts: 178
Joined: Sat Feb 10, 2018 2:43 pm
Location: Raceland, Louisiana

Thanks to everyone for the encouragement. I will continue to do what's best for the blue birds and martins. I had 5 blue birds fledge yesterday and, on my last martin nest check day before yesterday, I counted 63 eggs total but sure there will be more. I am so protective of the birds and want to live harmoniously with my neighbor so I will hide the trap and quietly diminish the HOSP population. Thanks again...I don't feel so alone.
flyin-lowe
Posts: 2936
Joined: Wed Mar 29, 2006 8:49 am
Location: Indiana/Henry Co.

You don't want to start a war with a neighbor as they could turn and retaliate. I would continue to trap as discretely as possible. The good news is that HOSP have a pretty small home range. So with the right traps you could catch the ones from here property as well and you will all see an increase in the native species. The first year at my old colony I got over 100 HOSP and each year after that the numbers went down. By about the 5th or 6th year I was getting less then 10 so you can make an impact in your area. The problem is that within a year or two of ending trapping you will start to see them taking over again. At my current place I got rid of close to 20 last year and so far I have only gotten 4 this year, not seeing as many.
2020 Currently 42 nest, 110 babies, 64 eggs left to hatch(6-22-20) HOSP count-8
2019- 31 Pair over 100 fledged
2018- 15 pair last count 49 fledged
2017 3 SY pair nested, 12 eggs total, fledged 10. 4 additional SY's stayed all summer but never paired/nested.
2016 1 pair fledged 4
2015 Visitors
2014 Visitors
2013 Moved 6 miles away, 1 pair fledged 2.
2012 30 pair fledged 100.
2011 12 pair (11 that nested), 43 fledged.
2010 5 pair, 21 eggs, 16 hatched, 14 fledged.
rrmartins
Posts: 1421
Joined: Tue Oct 19, 2010 8:04 am
Location: Round Rock, TX

brent wrote:
Sat Apr 27, 2019 9:45 pm
Thanks to everyone for the encouragement. I will continue to do what's best for the blue birds and martins. I had 5 blue birds fledge yesterday and, on my last martin nest check day before yesterday, I counted 63 eggs total but sure there will be more. I am so protective of the birds and want to live harmoniously with my neighbor so I will hide the trap and quietly diminish the HOSP population. Thanks again...I don't feel so alone.
If your steadily catching them at the spot the traps at, I wouldn’t move it, they’re gonna know your trapping anyway. They are invasive to native birds and your neighbors just need to come to grips with that.
2019
T14
7 pair
25 fledged
rrmartins
Posts: 1421
Joined: Tue Oct 19, 2010 8:04 am
Location: Round Rock, TX

rrmartins wrote:
Sun Apr 28, 2019 11:11 am
brent wrote:
Sat Apr 27, 2019 9:45 pm
Thanks to everyone for the encouragement. I will continue to do what's best for the blue birds and martins. I had 5 blue birds fledge yesterday and, on my last martin nest check day before yesterday, I counted 63 eggs total but sure there will be more. I am so protective of the birds and want to live harmoniously with my neighbor so I will hide the trap and quietly diminish the HOSP population. Thanks again...I don't feel so alone.
If your steadily catching them at the spot the traps at, I wouldn’t move it, they’re gonna know your trapping anyway. They are invasive to native birds and your neighbors just need to come to grips with that. I’ve been trapping for nine years and still got sixty-two of them last year. This year I’ve only got four males, which is great!!! They’ve moved to my Bradford Pear in the front yard this year. I won’t put my trap in my front yard, they’re plenty of people that love the little rats and my trap would be gone or destroyed for sure. Good luck!!
2019
T14
7 pair
25 fledged
Brad Biddle
Posts: 523
Joined: Wed Feb 17, 2016 6:22 pm
Location: Marshall County AL

I sure do love living out in the country! I had a new neighbor complain about the smell from me spreading chicken litter on our farm for fertilizer. I told her she should move back to town then turned around and walked away. That's the last time she complained. :grin:
Martin landlord since 2003. Currently offering 132 plastic gourds with tunnels and all SREH.
deancamp
Posts: 412
Joined: Wed Mar 16, 2016 9:17 pm
Location: Raymore, MO

Don't feel guilty about trapping the sparrows. Your neighbors perception of sparrows is no more important than yours. Having a feud with your neighbor would make things very uncomfortable, so hopefully she will be an adult and you can agree to disagree and move on.
Cloudwalker
Posts: 9
Joined: Thu Jun 16, 2016 1:52 pm
Location: Carroll, Iowa
Martin Colony History: I have had Martins for for about 17 years if not more. I did not keep a good record but have fledged about three nests a year. For this group that is not much but I am passionate about Martins and want to grow and have more birds and teach others!

I just ordered 2 gourds and a trap. I plan to hang 2 gourds (1st time) under my existing house which I raise and lower with a pully system (not the deluxe type) I am wondering if anyone has info. for me as I would like to trap a sparrow in the housing but can't find a trap that works. I tried two on the pmca site that don't fit right with my housing. Even the universal was not working. I was wondering about other traps sticky tape etc. Any suggestions as for sure the sparrow will return again and again and build an elaborate nest as you are all aware of. I would just like to read about others success with trapping sparrows and how they do it.
-=DKC=-
Posts: 356
Joined: Thu Jun 08, 2017 2:26 pm
Location: Corpus Christi, TX
Martin Colony History: ................
2019: 11 pairs
2018: 11 pairs - 43 fledged
2017: 4 pairs - 17 fledged

Cloudwalker wrote:
Fri May 03, 2019 4:20 pm
I just ordered 2 gourds and a trap. I plan to hang 2 gourds (1st time) under my existing house which I raise and lower with a pully system (not the deluxe type) I am wondering if anyone has info. for me as I would like to trap a sparrow in the housing but can't find a trap that works. I tried two on the pmca site that don't fit right with my housing. Even the universal was not working. I was wondering about other traps sticky tape etc. Any suggestions as for sure the sparrow will return again and again and build an elaborate nest as you are all aware of. I would just like to read about others success with trapping sparrows and how they do it.
The S&K traps work for me but they come with a S&K tunnel that you would have to attach to the gourd.
"If at first you don't succeed, keep on suckin' till you do succeed." - Curly Howard
Cloudwalker
Posts: 9
Joined: Thu Jun 16, 2016 1:52 pm
Location: Carroll, Iowa
Martin Colony History: I have had Martins for for about 17 years if not more. I did not keep a good record but have fledged about three nests a year. For this group that is not much but I am passionate about Martins and want to grow and have more birds and teach others!

I am trying to figure out how to post on this forum...newbie here. I have had small scale Martin success for years and always deal with sparrows. This year I have tons of Martins...well I have 8 compartments 4 that are two bedroom. One bottom 2 bedroom always has the sparrow nest with eggs that I discard but as you know in a few hours they can build another. So, I ordered a pellet gun I will get it this week. I am a female and have little experience with guns. But at your suggestions or someone's on the forum I bought a good one. Anyway mainly I want to figure out how to use this forum and get feed back. I will see if this posts
i_carumba
Posts: 27
Joined: Tue Apr 09, 2019 8:27 pm
Location: Southern Saskatchewan, Canada

I purchased a pellet rifle last year for the same reason.
Today I shot a male HOSP that was raising hell with the Martins and now peace has returned to the back yard. This HOSP would not go anywhere near my repeating trap so the gun was necessary.
My advice is to watch some you-tube videos to learn how to get your gun and scope set up. I measured the distance from where I shoot from to the Martin houses and then set up practice targets at these distances. It will take many practice shots to get your scope set properly and to be comfortable shooting (a hundred or more)
Don't just hold the rifle with your arms, find a way to rest the barrel on something. This will increase your accuracy greatly.
Since I have neighbors on all sides I am discreet about it when I set up to shoot at a HOSP.
I never take a shot at a HOSP without a backdrop that will stop the pellet when I miss (and you will miss several times) What I mean is I wont shoot at a HOSP sitting on a power line as a miss could mean a pellet hitting something or someone. I wait until the HOSP is on the porch of one of the Martin houses and then the wooden house will stop the pellet if I miss. I make sure that the pellet I shoot never leaves my property boundaries.
It is good to find a place to shoot from that hides your presence. The HOSPs will figure out you are a threat real quick and will disappear when they see you show up with your rifle.
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