Advice for wanna be landlord

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Andrew Smith
Posts: 20
Joined: Thu Jun 20, 2019 6:11 am
Location: Burford, Ontario, Canada
Martin Colony History: 2019 - Hundreds of fly-bys August and September. Half a dozen birds landed on house.

Advice for wanna be landlord

Postby Andrew Smith » Thu Jun 20, 2019 9:53 am

Hello to all. This is my first post. I am curious if this year is a wash for me? Has anyone had martins arrive this late (or later) in previous seasons? I am located in south western Ontario. Any feedback is welcomed. Thanks.

Ryan
Posts: 239
Joined: Sat Apr 15, 2006 4:19 pm
Location: Eganville, Ontario
Martin Colony History: Visitors are rare. Two SY males seen in 9 years.

Re: Advice for wanna be landlord

Postby Ryan » Thu Jun 20, 2019 11:04 am

You're running short on time but you might have 10 days to two weeks left. Leave the house up until September so any newly born martins and even older martins will see it over their travels south. They may remember and come back next spring.

Have you seen any martins this year? Are you playing the dawnsong, it's a must. You're in a much better area of Ontario than I am up here in terms of chances of martin attraction due to a higher population in your area.

Make sure you are clear of any trees with your housing. The more open and less trees close by, the better. Posting a picture of of your site will help if you can do that. This website is tough to get a proper sized picture to show, but I just go to vgy.me and set up an account as it's a free service to host photos. Then you just copy the link into the Img tab above.

There's a lot of experienced people here who can help you from your photo of your site.

Be patient, it could take some time but you will get them at some point. I'm in year 9 here. You should be much quicker than that in your area if you have a good open location with your housing.
Home site: 12 cedar chalets - Plus two satellite sites which are also empty.
2010- 1 SY male on and off for a couple weeks
2011- 0 visits
2012- 0 visits
2013- 0 visits
2014- 1 SY male stopped in here and there for two weeks.
2015- 0 visits
2016- 0 visits
2017- 0 visits
2018- 0 visits
2019- Break-through year. Had a SY Male stop in on June 7th and stay all day, every day until end of June. Hoping he returns in 2020 because I'm getting sick of updating this list.

Andrew Smith
Posts: 20
Joined: Thu Jun 20, 2019 6:11 am
Location: Burford, Ontario, Canada
Martin Colony History: 2019 - Hundreds of fly-bys August and September. Half a dozen birds landed on house.

Re: Advice for wanna be landlord

Postby Andrew Smith » Thu Jun 20, 2019 1:10 pm

Thank you for your response Ryan. To recap so far: I put my T14 up in late March. I have been playing the Dawn Song every morning around 4-5am. Lately multiple times daily and mixing in some Morning Chatter also. Preped the box with pine needles months ago also. Two weeks ago I put up four decoys as well. I am pretty sure I witnessed a female fly by on June 16th. She didn't land and did not come back since. I also have two Heath houses in a location at the front of the property in another clearing (about 150 feet from neighbors house).I am pretty much surrounded by mature trees, however there are open fields all around me. Some large bodies of water are less than a kilometer away (old gravel pits). I have attached pictures of the area to give you a better idea of the layout. T14 is approximately 70ft from any tree and about 40ft from my house. One other note: I don't know of anyone with martins in my area. Closest landlord I have seen is about a half hour drive away.
https://vgy.me/album/UoC5Cfy0

Ryan
Posts: 239
Joined: Sat Apr 15, 2006 4:19 pm
Location: Eganville, Ontario
Martin Colony History: Visitors are rare. Two SY males seen in 9 years.

Re: Advice for wanna be landlord

Postby Ryan » Thu Jun 20, 2019 1:29 pm

Nice pond and nice T-14. You're pretty treed in like you said, but those are some great fields out front.

I'm wondering if the front of the yard has more potential as it's closer the the field side. You do have your Heath house there as I think I can see in the picture. It would be great if that row of trees wasn't there between your driveway and the field but you can only do so much. You'be golden with a direct line to the fields.

It may just take time since you don't have many around either. Hard to say. The more open you make that area between your house and the field the better, but I understand one can only go so far as to making their site better and better.
Home site: 12 cedar chalets - Plus two satellite sites which are also empty.
2010- 1 SY male on and off for a couple weeks
2011- 0 visits
2012- 0 visits
2013- 0 visits
2014- 1 SY male stopped in here and there for two weeks.
2015- 0 visits
2016- 0 visits
2017- 0 visits
2018- 0 visits
2019- Break-through year. Had a SY Male stop in on June 7th and stay all day, every day until end of June. Hoping he returns in 2020 because I'm getting sick of updating this list.

Ryan
Posts: 239
Joined: Sat Apr 15, 2006 4:19 pm
Location: Eganville, Ontario
Martin Colony History: Visitors are rare. Two SY males seen in 9 years.

Re: Advice for wanna be landlord

Postby Ryan » Thu Jun 20, 2019 1:38 pm

You are in a pretty quiet martin area. I used this website to track down my closest colony a few years back. Mine is 45 minute drive away so I know the feeling.

https://ebird.org/map/purmar?neg=true&e ... 0&eyr=2019 Zoom that in to see your area. Click on the indicators for more info.

There was a handful of martins reported south of you 4 years back at Brant, 27 Concession Road 13. You may want to drive past there some time. I drove to my closest colony and met a nice old guy who has them for 30 years. I built him a house to try and boost his numbers knowing his hatchlings were my best chance and getting some. Go see what kind of housing they use, etc.


Really nothing to your West that's close but there are a few markers east in Branford and North in Paris so you should have some fly overs.
Home site: 12 cedar chalets - Plus two satellite sites which are also empty.
2010- 1 SY male on and off for a couple weeks
2011- 0 visits
2012- 0 visits
2013- 0 visits
2014- 1 SY male stopped in here and there for two weeks.
2015- 0 visits
2016- 0 visits
2017- 0 visits
2018- 0 visits
2019- Break-through year. Had a SY Male stop in on June 7th and stay all day, every day until end of June. Hoping he returns in 2020 because I'm getting sick of updating this list.

Andrew Smith
Posts: 20
Joined: Thu Jun 20, 2019 6:11 am
Location: Burford, Ontario, Canada
Martin Colony History: 2019 - Hundreds of fly-bys August and September. Half a dozen birds landed on house.

Re: Advice for wanna be landlord

Postby Andrew Smith » Thu Jun 20, 2019 3:42 pm

That website is great! Gotta love technology being used for the right reasons. I forgot to ask you what part of the province you reside? Do you have any other bird houses up?I failed to mention that one of Health's has a pair of tree swallows. I was going to set up another box for them, but time got away from me. Plus I figured there was still the other one unoccupied. This year I got my first bluebirds. Looks like two will fledge (house wren destroyed 2 eggs). It's been a rough spring here, cold and extremely wet. Woods are still flooded. One thing I have plenty of is mosquitoes!

Andrew Smith
Posts: 20
Joined: Thu Jun 20, 2019 6:11 am
Location: Burford, Ontario, Canada
Martin Colony History: 2019 - Hundreds of fly-bys August and September. Half a dozen birds landed on house.

Re: Advice for wanna be landlord

Postby Andrew Smith » Fri Jun 21, 2019 5:47 am

I made a small detour yesterday after dinner to check out the closest sighting from 2015. Unfortunately I don't see any signs of a colony, house, etc. I may stop by another time when the weather is a bit better, as it was raining pretty hard at the time. I will continue to play Dawn Song and Morning Chatter until fall, can't hurt. Wife and I were down at Long Point (Lake Erie) and there were thousands of dragon flies, hundreds of tree swallows and looked like a healthy population of martins. Nice to see they do exist. I'm pretty sure I was turning green with envy though! Thanks for the information you have provided, very helpful. Best of luck attracing some birds to your site.

Ryan
Posts: 239
Joined: Sat Apr 15, 2006 4:19 pm
Location: Eganville, Ontario
Martin Colony History: Visitors are rare. Two SY males seen in 9 years.

Re: Advice for wanna be landlord

Postby Ryan » Sat Jun 22, 2019 7:18 am

That website is great! Gotta love technology being used for the right reasons. I forgot to ask you what part of the province you reside? Do you have any other bird houses up?I failed to mention that one of Health's has a pair of tree swallows. I was going to set up another box for them, but time got away from me. Plus I figured there was still the other one unoccupied. This year I got my first bluebirds. Looks like two will fledge (house wren destroyed 2 eggs). It's been a rough spring here, cold and extremely wet. Woods are still flooded. One thing I have plenty of is mosquitoes!
I'm west of Ottawa.

Try and get those tree swallows out of there next spring. Place a blue bird house exactly 25-30 feet away from your Martin housing. Plug your holes in your Martin house and try to resist opening it until the swallows are on eggs in the blue bird house. This is really important as tree swallows will run off a timid Martin. I cut up pipe insulators to plug holes. Easy to push in and easy to remove.

I've had my swallows in a house 25 feet away for years now and they will keep other tree swallows out of my Martin house. When my lone Martin showed up early June they didn't bother him at all since they were already feeding babies. But if they were nesting in my Martin house they wouldn't have let him close to housing.

Very important to get them in a blue bird house 25 feet away, facing Martin housing. They are great guard dogs to keep your Martin house free of other swallows.

I'll post some pics of my site and swallow setup when I get a chance.
Home site: 12 cedar chalets - Plus two satellite sites which are also empty.
2010- 1 SY male on and off for a couple weeks
2011- 0 visits
2012- 0 visits
2013- 0 visits
2014- 1 SY male stopped in here and there for two weeks.
2015- 0 visits
2016- 0 visits
2017- 0 visits
2018- 0 visits
2019- Break-through year. Had a SY Male stop in on June 7th and stay all day, every day until end of June. Hoping he returns in 2020 because I'm getting sick of updating this list.

Dave Reynolds
Posts: 1756
Joined: Mon Jan 31, 2011 4:35 pm
Location: Little Hocking, Oh.
Martin Colony History: 2018 Success at Satilite Site “Oxbow Golf Course”.
2019 Success at my home Site

Re: Advice for wanna be landlord

Postby Dave Reynolds » Sat Jun 22, 2019 3:55 pm

... Ryan .... Good advice on the Tree Swallows... The Tree Swallows kept me from getting Martins for a few years.. Once you get Martins then I might think about Tree Swallows later...

Dave
Home Site
2019 — First pair, 5 eggs, 5 hatched, 5 fledged :wink:
2010 / 2018 -- Lots of Visitors

Satellite Site “Oxbow Golf Course”
2019 -- 26 Pair, 128 Eggs, 99 Hatched and 97 Fledged :wink:
2018 — 15 Pair, 58 Eggs, 38 Hatched and 36 Fledged :wink:

PMCA Member

Andrew Smith
Posts: 20
Joined: Thu Jun 20, 2019 6:11 am
Location: Burford, Ontario, Canada
Martin Colony History: 2019 - Hundreds of fly-bys August and September. Half a dozen birds landed on house.

Re: Advice for wanna be landlord

Postby Andrew Smith » Sat Jun 22, 2019 5:34 pm

I will take your advice on the tree swallow situation next spring. Does anyone know if barn swallows can cause issues with attracting and/or keeping martins? Or vice versa for that matter. Also I now have nine separate nest boxes with house wren. I am a bit concerned about what this will mean for me in the future. I have seen one on the top of the T-14 singing away. He has even brought in a few sticks. Your thoughts?

Ryan
Posts: 239
Joined: Sat Apr 15, 2006 4:19 pm
Location: Eganville, Ontario
Martin Colony History: Visitors are rare. Two SY males seen in 9 years.

Re: Advice for wanna be landlord

Postby Ryan » Sat Jun 22, 2019 5:47 pm

House wrens are awful if you ever have eggs there. One got my tree swallows a couple years ago and poked and tossed their eggs and filled the nest with sticks. The males love to fill as many nest boxes as they can to show a female home many houses they own.

Since then, I keep them away from my site.

No issue with barn swallows at all.
Home site: 12 cedar chalets - Plus two satellite sites which are also empty.
2010- 1 SY male on and off for a couple weeks
2011- 0 visits
2012- 0 visits
2013- 0 visits
2014- 1 SY male stopped in here and there for two weeks.
2015- 0 visits
2016- 0 visits
2017- 0 visits
2018- 0 visits
2019- Break-through year. Had a SY Male stop in on June 7th and stay all day, every day until end of June. Hoping he returns in 2020 because I'm getting sick of updating this list.

Ryan
Posts: 239
Joined: Sat Apr 15, 2006 4:19 pm
Location: Eganville, Ontario
Martin Colony History: Visitors are rare. Two SY males seen in 9 years.

Re: Advice for wanna be landlord

Postby Ryan » Mon Jun 24, 2019 9:36 am

I will take your advice on the tree swallow situation next spring.

Here's my housing set-up. You can see the tree swallow box 30 feet away from housing. Once you get them trained, they come back every year. When I had my first purple martin visitor in years this past month, I was happy to see the swallows didn't care that the martin took over my rack. They fly together now and get along well. Without the tree swallows in a box 30 feet away, you will contantly be removing swallow nests from the martin house all season long.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=v5blcPTkdig&
Home site: 12 cedar chalets - Plus two satellite sites which are also empty.
2010- 1 SY male on and off for a couple weeks
2011- 0 visits
2012- 0 visits
2013- 0 visits
2014- 1 SY male stopped in here and there for two weeks.
2015- 0 visits
2016- 0 visits
2017- 0 visits
2018- 0 visits
2019- Break-through year. Had a SY Male stop in on June 7th and stay all day, every day until end of June. Hoping he returns in 2020 because I'm getting sick of updating this list.

Andrew Smith
Posts: 20
Joined: Thu Jun 20, 2019 6:11 am
Location: Burford, Ontario, Canada
Martin Colony History: 2019 - Hundreds of fly-bys August and September. Half a dozen birds landed on house.

Re: Advice for wanna be landlord

Postby Andrew Smith » Mon Jun 24, 2019 6:39 pm

Cool drone video. I will take your advice on the blue bird box placement. However I was thinking about putting two boxes out, one for tree swallows and one for blue birds. I have read that you should place them side by side and as close as 5 feet apart. Lastly any ideas for keeping house wrens from killing nestlings or destroying eggs. The only thing that I can find in my research was to put up hole covers to block the wrens veiw of the openings. Looks like this can work but only after the "good" birds have laid an egg and are dedicated to nest box. Any thoughts?

Andrew Smith
Posts: 20
Joined: Thu Jun 20, 2019 6:11 am
Location: Burford, Ontario, Canada
Martin Colony History: 2019 - Hundreds of fly-bys August and September. Half a dozen birds landed on house.

Re: Advice for wanna be landlord

Postby Andrew Smith » Thu Aug 29, 2019 5:08 pm

Good news. I have been lucky the entire month of August. I have been playing"morning chatter" and had dozens of birds circling. Some landing on my T14. I had one a few minutes ago... picture shows the four decoys and one visitor. Pretty bad I'm already excited about spring of 2020!
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Ryan
Posts: 239
Joined: Sat Apr 15, 2006 4:19 pm
Location: Eganville, Ontario
Martin Colony History: Visitors are rare. Two SY males seen in 9 years.

Re: Advice for wanna be landlord

Postby Ryan » Sat Aug 31, 2019 8:04 pm

Unlike me, You're south enough to get flyovers as the Martin's head south and to roosts so that means you'll get some flyovers in the spring too. Keep the dawnsong going in the spring and remove any trees you can and hope. You have a chance.
Home site: 12 cedar chalets - Plus two satellite sites which are also empty.
2010- 1 SY male on and off for a couple weeks
2011- 0 visits
2012- 0 visits
2013- 0 visits
2014- 1 SY male stopped in here and there for two weeks.
2015- 0 visits
2016- 0 visits
2017- 0 visits
2018- 0 visits
2019- Break-through year. Had a SY Male stop in on June 7th and stay all day, every day until end of June. Hoping he returns in 2020 because I'm getting sick of updating this list.

Andrew Smith
Posts: 20
Joined: Thu Jun 20, 2019 6:11 am
Location: Burford, Ontario, Canada
Martin Colony History: 2019 - Hundreds of fly-bys August and September. Half a dozen birds landed on house.

Re: Advice for wanna be landlord

Postby Andrew Smith » Sat Aug 31, 2019 9:39 pm

I will keep playing morning chatter for a few more weeks. I am going to trim back as many limbs as possible this fall to open up the yard a bit more. As for next spring I will play dawn song as soon as I see scout reports near me. Now that I know birds have seen my set up I have more optimism for next year. Ryan I appreciate your tips and suggestions, I hope you get birds next year, lord knows you deserve it!

gotham
Posts: 60
Joined: Sun Apr 21, 2019 10:36 am
Location: Wellington, On, Canada (our summer place)
Martin Colony History: Wife's family martin house shore Lake Ontario since 1967. New martin house 2019 (Lonestar Alamo aluminum 14 compartment with perching rods and nest trays).

Re: Advice for wanna be landlord

Postby gotham » Mon Sep 02, 2019 2:23 am

Have found this thread very interesting. Agree Ryan's drone video was great! Also appreciated the link to the eBird site.

Was very interested to hear that Andrew is getting martin flyovers this late in the summer. As per my post ("Chicadee" Interference) I took our martin house down in mid August, shortly after the colony on the adjacent lot left on August 8, a week earlier than usual. This was because, over many years, we have never seen even a single martin after their end of season departure from here, presumably because our location in Wellington, Ontario, on the north-east shore of Lake Ontario, is close to the northern extent of their migration into this part of the province. I checked and did see that Burford is south (and west) of us and this may be why Andrew is able to have southward bound visitors this late in the summer.

We had a disappointing season with our new martin house, as outlined on our thread. However, with what we have learned on the forum this year, coupled with the fact that there was a colony next door, we have, like you fellow Ontarians, high hopes for next year :)

Gotham

Andrew Smith
Posts: 20
Joined: Thu Jun 20, 2019 6:11 am
Location: Burford, Ontario, Canada
Martin Colony History: 2019 - Hundreds of fly-bys August and September. Half a dozen birds landed on house.

Re: Advice for wanna be landlord

Postby Andrew Smith » Tue Sep 03, 2019 5:08 pm

Crazy afternoon here today (Burford, Ontario, Canada). I played "morning chatter" around 5pm and had around 20 martin's flying around for about 30 minutes! Most I've seen yet. Is this late in the season to see this many birds? I'm not complaining, just surprised thats all. Any thoughts?

gotham
Posts: 60
Joined: Sun Apr 21, 2019 10:36 am
Location: Wellington, On, Canada (our summer place)
Martin Colony History: Wife's family martin house shore Lake Ontario since 1967. New martin house 2019 (Lonestar Alamo aluminum 14 compartment with perching rods and nest trays).

Re: Advice for wanna be landlord

Postby gotham » Thu Sep 05, 2019 3:24 pm

I am amazed, given that we, also in Ontario but east and a bit north of you, haven't seen a single martin since the colony next door left 4 weeks ago. If anything like that happens again I would sure get a kick out of seeing a picture of them flying around your setup.

Gotham

randyM
Posts: 87
Joined: Thu Jun 18, 2015 2:30 pm
Location: Long Lake SD
Martin Colony History: Had 2 wooden and 1 plastic house up since 2004. Added plastic gourds to housing in June of 2015, had SY male stay for 3 weeks. Had lots of late visitors during late fall migration while playing martin chatter CD. Added more decoys and multiple styles of plastic gourds to my spread in 2016...it worked - 1 pair (ASYM + SYF) fledged both young that hatched!! S & S control done studiously every year.

2017 - 4 nesting pairs, 16/17 eggs hatched and all 16 young banded and fledged. Also had 5 extra SY males and 1 SY female stay during the nesting season.

2018 - 10 nesting pairs (7 ASYM, 3 SYM & 3 ASYF, 7 SYF), 52 eggs, 46 hatched, 45 fledged, 29 banded. Two banded males from 2017 hatch returned home. One successfully nested, the other stayed a few weeks and left.

2019 - 32 nests, 160 eggs - 25 ASYM & 7 SYM. The two males banded in 2017 again returned home now in ASY plumage, and two SY females and one SY male banded in 2018 returned in 2019. 87 HY banded in 2019.

Re: Advice for wanna be landlord

Postby randyM » Thu Sep 05, 2019 11:32 pm

I play my chatter CD until about Sept. 15 each year at my site in northern South Dakota. The latest I've ever seen a martin at my site is Sept. 12. Yesterday I had at least 8 martins visit my site (6 HY and 2 SY birds). I was gone most of the day today, but had the chatter CD playing until I got home at sunset...perhaps more stopped by today? I've had 3-17 visitors daily since Aug. 22 (the last day my latest fledged family left my colony). I'm sure the last of the stragglers will be passing through in the net 10 days. Many of these late migrants are likely HY birds that fledged very late in the season. These birds have had limited time to explore and look for a colony to return to next spring, so any colony they visit during their migration south is a very likely spot they will check out on their migration north next spring. Those folks that want to start a colony or increase the numbers of their existing colony are missing out on a great opportunity to attract such visitors to their colony if they take their houses down prior to mid-Sept. If they would leave their houses up, and even more appealing, if they put up decoys and play the chatter CD the chances of migrating birds stopping by for a visit is much higher than just having your housing up without playing the CD.

Good luck next season!


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