New to Martins and Forum....

Welcome to the internet's gathering place for Purple Martin enthusiasts
T-Bird
Posts: 93
Joined: Mon Dec 30, 2019 1:08 am
Location: McKinney Texas
Martin Colony History: Rookie Season
Trendsetter 12
PMCA Member

Re: New to Martins and Forum....

Postby T-Bird » Thu Jan 02, 2020 7:32 pm

T-Bird,

I've had great success with my Trendsetters. Had a house full the first year so I added another 8 compartment house last year. Both were full. No problem attracting the martins. Good luck and if you need any help this is the place to find it. This forum has been a great help for me many times. Opened up a couple of compartments today and added pine needles to the nest trays. I am so exited. Keeping my eyes to the sky! Good luck everyone and Happy New Year!

Brent
Hey Brent,

Do you just toss the pine needles in there, or do you form them into a nest? Also, do you add diatomaceous earth to the cavities to help with mites?

T

4th Gen Martin Fan
Posts: 1344
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.

Trendsetter and Pine needles

Postby 4th Gen Martin Fan » Sun Jan 05, 2020 8:38 pm

T-Bird,
Welcome to the PMCA Forum. Your Trendsetter 12 on a 3" square 14 foot pole is an excellent purple martin setup!! I would put the pole guard on as soon as possible. I feel confident that you will get martins this year. Be prepared to be hooked on martins when the first one arrives. Such joy must be experienced and cannot be explained.
I form the pine needles into a flat nest but don't send a lot of time.The martins will form the pine needles like they want and will eventually add to the pine needles.
I never use diatomaceous earth. It is not effective and I don't like the idea of martins or me inhaling the stuff.
I would place the house closer to your house rather than closer to the trees. The martins will perceive more danger from the trees rather than your house.
Good luck!
Mark.
Firm believer in Enlarged Compartments, SREHs, S&S Control, Pole Predator Guards, Owl/Hawk Guards, Mite/Parasite Control, Housing Insulation, and Vents for Compartment Cooling.
PMCA Member.

flyin-lowe
Posts: 2721
Joined: Wed Mar 29, 2006 8:49 am
Location: Indiana/Henry Co.

Re: New to Martins and Forum....

Postby flyin-lowe » Sun Jan 05, 2020 10:26 pm

You will find differing opinions on treating mites. Some on here do not use any "chemicals" relying only on nest changes. I have a method I (and others) use that has worked well for me. The day before my first eggs are due to start hatching I open each cavity and sprinkle a small amount of Seven dust under each nest. I like to do it before the eggs hatch so they don't inhale it. My housing all stays pretty dry unless we just happen to get a very strong windy rain storm with the wind coming in sideways. If my nests stay dray and when I treat just before eggs hatch I have never had mite issues before they fledge. Some choose to use Seven and some don't, that will be your choice.
2020 (HOSP Count 2)
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.

T-Bird
Posts: 93
Joined: Mon Dec 30, 2019 1:08 am
Location: McKinney Texas
Martin Colony History: Rookie Season
Trendsetter 12
PMCA Member

Re: Trendsetter and Pine needles

Postby T-Bird » Sun Jan 05, 2020 11:12 pm

T-Bird,
Welcome to the PMCA Forum. Your Trendsetter 12 on a 3" square 14 foot pole is an excellent purple martin setup!! I would put the pole guard on as soon as possible. I feel confident that you will get martins this year. Be prepared to be hooked on martins when the first one arrives. Such joy must be experienced and cannot be explained.
I form the pine needles into a flat nest but don't send a lot of time.The martins will form the pine needles like they want and will eventually add to the pine needles.
I never use diatomaceous earth. It is not effective and I don't like the idea of martins or me inhaling the stuff.
I would place the house closer to your house rather than closer to the trees. The martins will perceive more danger from the trees rather than your house.
Good luck!
Thank you Mark for the warm welcome! I am getting the pole guard very soon.

Thanks for all of your advice. I am really looking forward to being a good landlord to these beautiful creatures.

T

T-Bird
Posts: 93
Joined: Mon Dec 30, 2019 1:08 am
Location: McKinney Texas
Martin Colony History: Rookie Season
Trendsetter 12
PMCA Member

Re: New to Martins and Forum....

Postby T-Bird » Sun Jan 05, 2020 11:43 pm

You will find differing opinions on treating mites. Some on here do not use any "chemicals" relying only on nest changes. I have a method I (and others) use that has worked well for me. The day before my first eggs are due to start hatching I open each cavity and sprinkle a small amount of Seven dust under each nest. I like to do it before the eggs hatch so they don't inhale it. My housing all stays pretty dry unless we just happen to get a very strong windy rain storm with the wind coming in sideways. If my nests stay dray and when I treat just before eggs hatch I have never had mite issues before they fledge. Some choose to use Seven and some don't, that will be your choice.
Thanks for the info, I will definitely look into Seven dust. I was going to use D.E., as I always have some on hand for my pool filter. But now I’m not so sure.

My house should be arriving tomorrow. Looking forward to getting it set up !

C.C.Martins
Posts: 788
Joined: Fri Apr 14, 2017 11:15 am
Location: Corpus Christi Tx
Martin Colony History: 2016- didnt know anything about martins, put up an all wrong house in 2016 and had two come by and inspect all the cavities. Left soon after not to return. Learned what i could on PMCA, made adjustments and next year was sucessful.
2017- 5 pair. 15 fledged.
2018-18 pair. 85 fledged.
2019- 17 pair. 81 fledged
2020:?
Home colony: 17 natural gourds, one 6 compartment house. All SREH.
Satelite colony Oso bay preserve: 12 gourds: excluder, troyer horizontal, super gourds with tunnels. 6 room trio mino castle with enlarged compartments.
2019: Visitors
2020: ?
PMCA member

Re: New to Martins and Forum....

Postby C.C.Martins » Mon Jan 06, 2020 6:15 am

T-bird,
If at all possible avoid putting up the round house. its a magnet for every other bird you do not want near a martin house. It won't assist you in attracting martins. just a suggestion.
Tom
Tom

2016- two visitors
2017- 5 pair 15 Fledged
2018-18 pairs 85 Fledged
2019-17 pair 81 fledged
2020:

Satellite location: oso bay preserve 12 gourds, modified trio
2019: Visitors
2020: hopeful!!!

4th Gen Martin Fan
Posts: 1344
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.

Good Martin Housing

Postby 4th Gen Martin Fan » Mon Jan 06, 2020 9:17 am

T-Bird,
I agree with Tom. The round house looks cute and if that is the house that brought you to purple martins, then it has served its purpose.
Put it somewhere in your house as a decoration if you need to do something with it.
The round house will be nothing but trouble. It cannot be adapted to raising and lowering. It will have the wrong size compartments and does not have SREH (starling resistant entrance hole) entrances.
It was built and designed by an artist who had no knowledge or understanding of purple martins.
Sorry for being so honest and blunt.
Mark.
Firm believer in Enlarged Compartments, SREHs, S&S Control, Pole Predator Guards, Owl/Hawk Guards, Mite/Parasite Control, Housing Insulation, and Vents for Compartment Cooling.
PMCA Member.

4th Gen Martin Fan
Posts: 1344
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.

New Landlord Anxiety

Postby 4th Gen Martin Fan » Mon Jan 06, 2020 9:45 am

T-Bird,
I cannot wait for your news that martins have arrived at your setup. You will watch the martins from your windows with binoculars and be afraid to walk outside. You will think that the martins will leave if you disturb them.
I have never known a time without martins in our backyard as a kid. I played all around the martin houses. I only remember getting in trouble when I banged on the pole and spooked all of the martins. I remember the sound of the martins calling out their alarm calls. Dad explained how I was scaring the martins and that was not nice.
When my martins return each year, I walk up to the house and talk to the martins like my Father does. They talk back to me and may fly off and circle back but I figure they need to know me from the beginning.
Mark.
Firm believer in Enlarged Compartments, SREHs, S&S Control, Pole Predator Guards, Owl/Hawk Guards, Mite/Parasite Control, Housing Insulation, and Vents for Compartment Cooling.
PMCA Member.

T-Bird
Posts: 93
Joined: Mon Dec 30, 2019 1:08 am
Location: McKinney Texas
Martin Colony History: Rookie Season
Trendsetter 12
PMCA Member

Re: New to Martins and Forum....

Postby T-Bird » Mon Jan 06, 2020 12:06 pm

T-bird,
If at all possible avoid putting up the round house. its a magnet for every other bird you do not want near a martin house. It won't assist you in attracting martins. just a suggestion.
Tom
Good to know. Thank you!

T-Bird

T-Bird
Posts: 93
Joined: Mon Dec 30, 2019 1:08 am
Location: McKinney Texas
Martin Colony History: Rookie Season
Trendsetter 12
PMCA Member

Re: Good Martin Housing

Postby T-Bird » Mon Jan 06, 2020 12:22 pm

T-Bird,
I agree with Tom. The round house looks cute and if that is the house that brought you to purple martins, then it has served its purpose.
Put it somewhere in your house as a decoration if you need to do something with it.
The round house will be nothing but trouble. It cannot be adapted to raising and lowering. It will have the wrong size compartments and does not have SREH (starling resistant entrance hole) entrances.
It was built and designed by an artist who had no knowledge or understanding of purple martins.
Sorry for being so honest and blunt.
Honestly, that’s exactly what happened. I found that house online and thought it was nice, so I bought it. That was over a year ago. I never put it up. Didn’t know it was for martins. Once I started learning about martins, I realized that it wasn’t the right design. Oh well, lesson learned. It is still a nice piece of artwork!

Just received my pole and winch from UPS. Still waiting on the house from FedEx. :grin:

T-Bird
Posts: 93
Joined: Mon Dec 30, 2019 1:08 am
Location: McKinney Texas
Martin Colony History: Rookie Season
Trendsetter 12
PMCA Member

Re: New Landlord Anxiety

Postby T-Bird » Mon Jan 06, 2020 12:28 pm

T-Bird,
I cannot wait for your news that martins have arrived at your setup. You will watch the martins from your windows with binoculars and be afraid to walk outside. You will think that the martins will leave if you disturb them.
I have never known a time without martins in our backyard as a kid. I played all around the martin houses. I only remember getting in trouble when I banged on the pole and spooked all of the martins. I remember the sound of the martins calling out their alarm calls. Dad explained how I was scaring the martins and that was not nice.
When my martins return each year, I walk up to the house and talk to the martins like my Father does. They talk back to me and may fly off and circle back but I figure they need to know me from the beginning.
Hi Mark!

I am very excited to get started, but don’t want to have unrealistic expectations. I do have some very mature trees on the back edge of my property that will be near my Martin house.

I do have a nice outdoor patio that overlooks my yard, and can’t wait for the day I can sit outside with my coffee, and hear my new residents!

C.C.Martins
Posts: 788
Joined: Fri Apr 14, 2017 11:15 am
Location: Corpus Christi Tx
Martin Colony History: 2016- didnt know anything about martins, put up an all wrong house in 2016 and had two come by and inspect all the cavities. Left soon after not to return. Learned what i could on PMCA, made adjustments and next year was sucessful.
2017- 5 pair. 15 fledged.
2018-18 pair. 85 fledged.
2019- 17 pair. 81 fledged
2020:?
Home colony: 17 natural gourds, one 6 compartment house. All SREH.
Satelite colony Oso bay preserve: 12 gourds: excluder, troyer horizontal, super gourds with tunnels. 6 room trio mino castle with enlarged compartments.
2019: Visitors
2020: ?
PMCA member

Re: New to Martins and Forum....

Postby C.C.Martins » Mon Jan 06, 2020 8:03 pm

Its going to be exciting for you, all the time, $$ and effort in the house. Its a lot of fun preparing. When your all ready to set up, house has arrived and all, please ask any questions; when it comes to the amount of cement, depth of the hole, even orientation of the house (what I mean by that is: pretend your drinking coffee watching your martin full house...youd want to be able to view as many compartments at one time as possible because they are so much FUN to watch, you can see the issues too). When in doubt of the amount of cement for example think about prolongued rain and a heavy wind event, and ask if the amount you planned is enough. I am one to worry, about everything! in the front yard here iv got a 14 foot lonestar gourd rack (first season up). 8 Natural gourds so load will be fairly light.
We have heavy clay soil that sticks to everything but lots of wind and when it gets dry is hard as a rock but temds to crack.
So i dug a 3.5 foot deep hole, 10 inches around, belled out at the bottom very nicely. Cut lengths of rebar and drove it in the bottom and sides before using almost 200 lbs of quickcrete. Its not going anywhere.
I looked to the forum for help while thinking of the depth...(mr barrow helped me site it in and orient correctly), one theme kept coming up...do it right, dont have to worry, birds will be safer.
I think we are all excited for you!
Your house will arrive just in time, the martins will cooperate!

PS You asked about pre nests; some folks do, some don't. I prefer to...keeps them off the ground away from predators and they don't need to expend needless energy...shoot, sometimes they re-do everything anyway...put a small handful of long dry pine needles in the nest tray, if can arrange it in a circle so much the better. female will dig down and spin around to get the nest bowl going. you can scatter a layer on the entire cavity floor...the birds will tromp through it and move it around but the floors may get slick. They will adjust if they wish.
Last edited by C.C.Martins on Mon Jan 06, 2020 8:28 pm, edited 1 time in total.
Tom

2016- two visitors
2017- 5 pair 15 Fledged
2018-18 pairs 85 Fledged
2019-17 pair 81 fledged
2020:

Satellite location: oso bay preserve 12 gourds, modified trio
2019: Visitors
2020: hopeful!!!

T-Bird
Posts: 93
Joined: Mon Dec 30, 2019 1:08 am
Location: McKinney Texas
Martin Colony History: Rookie Season
Trendsetter 12
PMCA Member

Re: New to Martins and Forum....

Postby T-Bird » Mon Jan 06, 2020 8:24 pm

Its going to be exciting for you, all the time, $$ and effort in the house. Its a lot of fun preparing. When your all ready to set up, house has arrived and all, please ask any questions; when it comes to the amount of cement, depth of the hole, even orientation of the house. When in doubt of the amount of cement for example think about prolongued rain and a heavy wind event, and ask if the amount you planned is enough. I am one to worry, about everything! in the front yard here iv got a 14 foot lonestar gourd rack (first season up). 8 Natural gourds so load will be fairly light.
We have heavy clay soil that sticks to everything but lots of wind and when it gets dry is hard as a rock but temds to crack.
So i dug a 3.5 foot deep hole, 10 inches around, belled out at the bottom very nicely. Cut lengths of rebar and drove it in the bottom and sides before using almost 200 lbs of quickcrete. Its not going anywhere.
I looked to the forum for help while thinking of the depth...(mr barrow helped me site it in and orient correctly), one theme kept coming up...do it right, dont have to worry, birds will be safer.
I think we are all excited for you!
Your house will arrive just in time, the martins will cooperate!
Image

Image

Seeking guidance on whether or not you think the hole is in a good location. Trying to keep a good distance from house and trees.
Last edited by T-Bird on Tue Jan 14, 2020 10:48 pm, edited 2 times in total.

C.C.Martins
Posts: 788
Joined: Fri Apr 14, 2017 11:15 am
Location: Corpus Christi Tx
Martin Colony History: 2016- didnt know anything about martins, put up an all wrong house in 2016 and had two come by and inspect all the cavities. Left soon after not to return. Learned what i could on PMCA, made adjustments and next year was sucessful.
2017- 5 pair. 15 fledged.
2018-18 pair. 85 fledged.
2019- 17 pair. 81 fledged
2020:?
Home colony: 17 natural gourds, one 6 compartment house. All SREH.
Satelite colony Oso bay preserve: 12 gourds: excluder, troyer horizontal, super gourds with tunnels. 6 room trio mino castle with enlarged compartments.
2019: Visitors
2020: ?
PMCA member

Re: New to Martins and Forum....

Postby C.C.Martins » Mon Jan 06, 2020 8:35 pm

looks like a good spot to me. taking into consideration the weight of the house, pole type of soil, etc how deep were you thinking of going?
Tom

2016- two visitors
2017- 5 pair 15 Fledged
2018-18 pairs 85 Fledged
2019-17 pair 81 fledged
2020:

Satellite location: oso bay preserve 12 gourds, modified trio
2019: Visitors
2020: hopeful!!!

T-Bird
Posts: 93
Joined: Mon Dec 30, 2019 1:08 am
Location: McKinney Texas
Martin Colony History: Rookie Season
Trendsetter 12
PMCA Member

Re: New to Martins and Forum....

Postby T-Bird » Mon Jan 06, 2020 9:33 pm

looks like a good spot to me. taking into consideration the weight of the house, pole type of soil, etc how deep were you thinking of going?
Well, the pole came with a steel ground stake, and the instructions state to dig a 14” x 14” x 24” deep hole. So that’s what I did. Will probably get cement tomorrow and try to get the stake set, barring any recommended changes from the board. 8)

North Texas has a lot of red clay, but what we dug up today was mostly nice brown dirt, along with a few nice size stones. Pole is a 3” x 3” square aluminum. House is not as heavy as it looks. I’d say it weighs no more than 30 lbs.

mwren
Posts: 95
Joined: Tue Mar 17, 2015 2:43 pm
Location: OH/Athens
Martin Colony History: I have had my martin colony on the dam of one of my ponds for nine years. The colony has grown each year, but I am now concentrating on helping friends and acquaintances who have shown interests in martins. My colony consists of three T-14's with 8 Troyer gourds attatched to each T-14, a Troyer gourd rack with 12 gourds, and another gourd rack with 18 Troyer gourds for a total of 96 nest cavities. I am having serious predation issues with hawks and owls and am experimenting with various hawk guards and "screens". Established successful supplemental feeding last season during late march and had a blast flipping mostly meal worms and some crickets. Faculty from Ohio University are using my colony as a research site to study parasites that target cavity nesting birds. In exchange for access to my bird trail nest boxes and martin housing, they are banding all birds involved in their study.

Re: New to Martins and Forum....

Postby mwren » Mon Jan 06, 2020 9:57 pm

T-bird,
Welcome aboard! You are off to a good start from what I am reading. In your questions about type of boxes, locations, etc, I didnt see much discussion about the importance of the proper type of pole equipped with a hoisting sytem to make nest checks easy to perform on a routine basis. Make sure you can lower and raise you houses or gourds easily and safely.
Good luck this season

"Bird"
Mike "Bird" Wren

T-Bird
Posts: 93
Joined: Mon Dec 30, 2019 1:08 am
Location: McKinney Texas
Martin Colony History: Rookie Season
Trendsetter 12
PMCA Member

Re: New to Martins and Forum....

Postby T-Bird » Mon Jan 06, 2020 10:14 pm

T-bird,
Welcome aboard! You are off to a good start from what I am reading. In your questions about type of boxes, locations, etc, I didnt see much discussion about the importance of the proper type of pole equipped with a hoisting sytem to make nest checks easy to perform on a routine basis. Make sure you can lower and raise you houses or gourds easily and safely.
Good luck this season

"Bird"
Thanks Bird!

My new Purple McMansion came with a 3” x 3” square aluminum pole with steel ground stake, winch and cables. Looking forward to the day I lower my house and see some babies. :)

T-Bird

4th Gen Martin Fan
Posts: 1344
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.

Ground Stake Concrete

Postby 4th Gen Martin Fan » Tue Jan 07, 2020 9:25 am

T-Bird,
My sister in Seguin, TX made her first hole and concrete like Tom did - 14 in diameter x 3 1/2 ft deep with the belled out bottom. That 3" square 14 ft aluminum pole is identical to your pole and ground stake. She was not happy at all of the extra work but she loves that the martin gourd rack is perfectly plumb after 5 years.
Her second hole and concrete were as per the directions 10" x 24" deep by a friend (who is a construction contractor) who refused to follow her directions. After one season, the pole was severely leaning. She was so mad at the bad advise from the "expert". She and her husband had to dig out the "expert's" work and start all over. Now she has two plumb poles and she is happy.
Her advise to you, do it right the first time or do it again right the second time.

I am especially concerned about your site. It looks like your beautiful home and outdoor patio was built on fill dirt and will settle over the next few years. I hope that I am wrong. At least set your martin ground stake on a good footing.
Mark.
Firm believer in Enlarged Compartments, SREHs, S&S Control, Pole Predator Guards, Owl/Hawk Guards, Mite/Parasite Control, Housing Insulation, and Vents for Compartment Cooling.
PMCA Member.

T-Bird
Posts: 93
Joined: Mon Dec 30, 2019 1:08 am
Location: McKinney Texas
Martin Colony History: Rookie Season
Trendsetter 12
PMCA Member

Re: New to Martins and Forum....

Postby T-Bird » Tue Jan 07, 2020 9:44 am

Its going to be exciting for you, all the time, $$ and effort in the house. Its a lot of fun preparing. When your all ready to set up, house has arrived and all, please ask any questions; when it comes to the amount of cement, depth of the hole, even orientation of the house (what I mean by that is: pretend your drinking coffee watching your martin full house...youd want to be able to view as many compartments at one time as possible because they are so much FUN to watch, you can see the issues too). When in doubt of the amount of cement for example think about prolongued rain and a heavy wind event, and ask if the amount you planned is enough. I am one to worry, about everything! in the front yard here iv got a 14 foot lonestar gourd rack (first season up). 8 Natural gourds so load will be fairly light.
We have heavy clay soil that sticks to everything but lots of wind and when it gets dry is hard as a rock but temds to crack.
So i dug a 3.5 foot deep hole, 10 inches around, belled out at the bottom very nicely. Cut lengths of rebar and drove it in the bottom and sides before using almost 200 lbs of quickcrete. Its not going anywhere.
I looked to the forum for help while thinking of the depth...(mr barrow helped me site it in and orient correctly), one theme kept coming up...do it right, dont have to worry, birds will be safer.
I think we are all excited for you!
Your house will arrive just in time, the martins will cooperate!

PS You asked about pre nests; some folks do, some don't. I prefer to...keeps them off the ground away from predators and they don't need to expend needless energy...shoot, sometimes they re-do everything anyway...put a small handful of long dry pine needles in the nest tray, if can arrange it in a circle so much the better. female will dig down and spin around to get the nest bowl going. you can scatter a layer on the entire cavity floor...the birds will tromp through it and move it around but the floors may get slick. They will adjust if they wish.
Could you please be more specific in regards to the lengths of rebar you had cut, and how you installed it in the hole ?

Thanks!

C.C.Martins
Posts: 788
Joined: Fri Apr 14, 2017 11:15 am
Location: Corpus Christi Tx
Martin Colony History: 2016- didnt know anything about martins, put up an all wrong house in 2016 and had two come by and inspect all the cavities. Left soon after not to return. Learned what i could on PMCA, made adjustments and next year was sucessful.
2017- 5 pair. 15 fledged.
2018-18 pair. 85 fledged.
2019- 17 pair. 81 fledged
2020:?
Home colony: 17 natural gourds, one 6 compartment house. All SREH.
Satelite colony Oso bay preserve: 12 gourds: excluder, troyer horizontal, super gourds with tunnels. 6 room trio mino castle with enlarged compartments.
2019: Visitors
2020: ?
PMCA member

Re: New to Martins and Forum....

Postby C.C.Martins » Tue Jan 07, 2020 10:20 am

I used 2 foot lengths of regular rebar. Surprisingly easy to cut.
Pounded them in...not fun in a deep hole so used a board to press the ones on the sides in about half way so that the ends are extending into the hole. Ones on the bottom was easy.
Put a few inches of gravel in the bottom for drainage. Put in the cement. Hope this helps you sir
Tom

2016- two visitors
2017- 5 pair 15 Fledged
2018-18 pairs 85 Fledged
2019-17 pair 81 fledged
2020:

Satellite location: oso bay preserve 12 gourds, modified trio
2019: Visitors
2020: hopeful!!!


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