Please help me identify these birds !

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

Please help me identify these birds !

Postby T-Bird » Sat Jan 25, 2020 10:20 am

My rookie eyeballs aren’t sure what they are. But they landed on my new house this morning. They even took a peek inside!

Image

Bird Brain
Posts: 135
Joined: Wed Feb 10, 2016 9:22 am
Location: Highland Village, TX
Martin Colony History: 2017-nothing
2018-couple of visitors
2019-nothing
2020-Removed 2 trees. Raised height of housing. Offering 12 Chirpy Nests, 8 Troyer Verticals, and 4 Troyer Horizontals. Playing Daytime Chatter C.D. this year and added a couple of decoys on rack. Smeared mud around the entrances. Will see what happens.

Re: Please help me identify these birds !

Postby Bird Brain » Sat Jan 25, 2020 10:25 am

Carolina wren. He's checking it out but is harmless. You should set up housing for them also. Mine utilize a hanging house on my back porch. They have a beautiful song.
Every time I kill a house sparrow, I make the world a better place.

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: Please help me identify these birds !

Postby T-Bird » Sat Jan 25, 2020 10:33 am

Carolina wren. He's checking it out but is harmless. You should set up housing for them also. Mine utilize a hanging house on my back porch. They have a beautiful song.
Thank you.

Do you have a picture of your house for them?

Bird Brain
Posts: 135
Joined: Wed Feb 10, 2016 9:22 am
Location: Highland Village, TX
Martin Colony History: 2017-nothing
2018-couple of visitors
2019-nothing
2020-Removed 2 trees. Raised height of housing. Offering 12 Chirpy Nests, 8 Troyer Verticals, and 4 Troyer Horizontals. Playing Daytime Chatter C.D. this year and added a couple of decoys on rack. Smeared mud around the entrances. Will see what happens.

Re: Please help me identify these birds !

Postby Bird Brain » Sat Jan 25, 2020 10:49 am

Every time I kill a house sparrow, I make the world a better place.

Whippy
Posts: 417
Joined: Thu Jan 19, 2017 11:15 pm
Location: Plano, Texas
Martin Colony History: 2016 - late to put up, many visitors
2017 - 1 pair, 3 fledged
2018- 2 pair, 12 fledged
2019 - 4 pair, 21 fledged
2020 - ?

Re: Please help me identify these birds !

Postby Whippy » Sat Jan 25, 2020 11:22 am

I have house wrens visiting my gourds from time to time and they like to bring in pieces of what appears to be cotton from a cotton wood tree. They just leave it in there and go away. Once a week I'll lower the gourds and take out the cotton. Not sure it's important but that's what I do. They nest at my neighbors house from where I acquired the Trio.

I had one pretty aggressive wren a couple of years ago that poked a hole in some my eggs. I kept chasing him/her off so he/she quit coming over.

On a side note:

Keep an eye out for wasps. If you see one or two flying around your house be sure to lower and check for wasp nests. They are pretty sneaky. You see them a think they're just checking things out but in reality they have built a nest in there. Each wasp nest starts with one wasp and all others you see have hatched and begin to help her build and build.

Coolwhips

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

Re: Please help me identify these birds !

Postby flyin-lowe » Sat Jan 25, 2020 12:22 pm

The wrens at my old house were very deadly. I am not sure if they were house wrens or Carolina wrens (if there is a difference) but every year they would take over any TS nest and 2nd clutch of BB's that were on my property. I noticed that they started nesting late in the season but every year my BB's would start their second clutch and the wrens would come in, kill anything in the nest, and bring sticks in and nest right on top. I've had more native birds killed by wrens then I have HOSP. Part of that is because I can shoot the HOSP and the wrens are protected.
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.

deancamp
Posts: 239
Joined: Wed Mar 16, 2016 9:17 pm
Location: Raymore, MO

Re: Please help me identify these birds !

Postby deancamp » Sat Jan 25, 2020 1:20 pm

I agree they can be aggressive and very persistent. I have had them fill a Martin cavity with small twigs to build their nest. I cleaned it out, but never seen any damage to the Martins. I assumed they would be aggressive towards the Martins since they were competing for their nesting cavity. If it continues to show interest in your housing, I would block off the entrances hoping it will find a different nesting cavity. It would be easier to stop him before his nest building starts. My 2 cents.

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.

Carolina Wrens

Postby 4th Gen Martin Fan » Sat Jan 25, 2020 4:30 pm

The male Carolina wren starts to build a nest in multiple locations. When he attracts a female, he will take her around to all of his minimally started nests. She will inspect them and then chose one of them as her nest. She will complete the nest and then lay her eggs.
Each year a pair raise one - two broods in unexpected places. A bucket, watering can, rain gutter down spout left on its side, who knows what?!
For their size, they sure make a lot of noise. "Tea kettle, tea kettle, tea kettle, ..." is the call I recognize and hear the most.
Busy, busy, busy!!!!!!!
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: Please help me identify these birds !

Postby T-Bird » Wed Jan 29, 2020 12:11 pm

These birds are trying to nest in my house. Can I blast them?

I saw a couple of blueish looking birds swarming my house this morning and the brown bird was mixing it up with them. By the time I got my binoculars up to take a closer look, they all flew off. I don’t want to lose an opportunity to land some pm’s.

Louise Chambers
Site Admin
Posts: 6192
Joined: Tue Nov 04, 2003 1:07 pm
Location: Corpus Christi, TX

Re: Please help me identify these birds !

Postby Louise Chambers » Wed Jan 29, 2020 12:35 pm

No, you can't shoot any native songbirds, including bluebirds, tree swallows, house wrens, carolina wrens, bewick's wrens, flycatchers - all of which might show an interest in martin houses or gourds. If you go to cornell lab of ornithology's all about birds site, there are photos and range maps for the different wren species, looks like house wrens don't breed at all in your area, just spend the winter.

Your photo shows carolina wrens, which is good news - they do not pierce and throw out martin eggs, or other cavity nester eggs (see list above). IF they take nest material in, remove it. Provide them a gourd or nestbox - anything suitable for a bluebird or tree swallow is fine, could have smaller entrance hole, sized 1-1/8 inch, which would keep house sparrows out of it. Edit: your photo is not close up, but try to view bird with binoculars, it might be a bewick's wren, which does not have the orangey-tan of a carolina wren, but does have white eye stripe. Bewick's wrens are not a problem, don't break eggs, etc - only house wrens do that. We host bewick's wrens most years and enjoy them.

For those with house wrens in their area - House wrens might try to nest in martin homes, and they might break or remove eggs - but since they are protected, you cannot trap or shoot. Instead focus on removing any twigs they bring in on a daily basis to discourage them, and give them a box or gourd of their own that is out of sight of martin homes, preferably in brushier area. Put in a few twigs to get them started. I always enjoyed hosting house wrens when I lived up north - lovely song, eat insects, and good company.

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: Please help me identify these birds !

Postby T-Bird » Wed Jan 29, 2020 4:31 pm

No, you can't shoot any native songbirds, including bluebirds, tree swallows, house wrens, carolina wrens, bewick's wrens, flycatchers - all of which might show an interest in martin houses or gourds. If you go to cornell lab of ornithology's all about birds site, there are photos and range maps for the different wren species, looks like house wrens don't breed at all in your area, just spend the winter.

Your photo shows carolina wrens, which is good news - they do not pierce and throw out martin eggs, or other cavity nester eggs (see list above). IF they take nest material in, remove it. Provide them a gourd or nestbox - anything suitable for a bluebird or tree swallow is fine, could have smaller entrance hole, sized 1-1/8 inch, which would keep house sparrows out of it. Edit: your photo is not close up, but try to view bird with binoculars, it might be a bewick's wren, which does not have the orangey-tan of a carolina wren, but does have white eye stripe. Bewick's wrens are not a problem, don't break eggs, etc - only house wrens do that. We host bewick's wrens most years and enjoy them.

For those with house wrens in their area - House wrens might try to nest in martin homes, and they might break or remove eggs - but since they are protected, you cannot trap or shoot. Instead focus on removing any twigs they bring in on a daily basis to discourage them, and give them a box or gourd of their own that is out of sight of martin homes, preferably in brushier area. Put in a few twigs to get them started. I always enjoyed hosting house wrens when I lived up north - lovely song, eat insects, and good company.
I do have a small bluebird house in another part of the yard. Hopefully the wrens will move over to it.

tor
Posts: 201
Joined: Wed Feb 25, 2009 4:35 pm
Location: Marlboro County, SC
Martin Colony History: Capacity: 72 Troyers on 3 X Super-24 racks

Re: Please help me identify these birds !

Postby tor » Thu Feb 06, 2020 8:13 pm

Wrens make nests anywhere: Under the hood of cars, in the fenders, in buckets sitting outside, ledges etc. They are very persistent if you remove the nest. They rebuild next day, in the same spot. If you remove the nests enough times, they move on. They also try nesting in our barn swallow cups.
Location: Marlboro County, SC

2020: Capacity: 72 - First Scouts: 2/11
2019: Capacity: 72 - First Scouts: 2/22 - 70 pair - 315 fledged
2018: Capacity: 70 - First Scouts: 2/18 - 60 pair - 270 fledged
2017: Capacity: 42 - First Scouts: 2/25 - 39 pair
2016: Capacity: 42 - First Scouts: 3/10 - 32 pair
2015: Capacity: 24 - First Scouts: 3/23 - 4 pair

Purple Martins Of South Carolina
Torlo.com - Live Life Like There is No Tomorrow

Rodger Drye
Posts: 645
Joined: Sun Mar 23, 2014 10:07 am
Location: NC/Mt. Pleasant
Martin Colony History: Have been hosting and providing a sanactuary for Purple Martins for 30 years.

Re: Please help me identify these birds !

Postby Rodger Drye » Sat Feb 08, 2020 10:12 pm

I have Wrens nest on and about my property every year. Have several out buildings and sheds here at the farm and Wrens always seem to find a place to nest. One nests every year in the same cavity in a shed where I keep spare bolts and hitch equipment. Even had one nest in the Hydraulic compartment of my Dump Trailer. Raised the whole brood except for one. A Black snake crawled in a got him. Have never had any problem with them bothering my Martin’s.

Rodger
PMCA Member
Have been Hosting and Protecting Martin's for 30 years.

TerryW
Posts: 88
Joined: Tue Mar 12, 2019 12:02 pm
Location: Nashville, Arkansas

Re: Please help me identify these birds !

Postby TerryW » Mon Feb 10, 2020 10:11 am

The House wren is the twig nest builder. It will place twigs in every screw and nail can in your shop. It will learn to enter a garage under the door if there is room to enter. My Carolina wrens never use twigs and will build the coolest nest in your flower pots that you will ever see. It will be of fine grass material, will have a fur lined bowl if fur is available, and it will have a side entry hole and a roof constructed of grass. Very cool. The Carolina is a bit larger than the House. Wrens are spunky birds, always flicking their tail, both have a loud, sharp, but still melodious song that can be like a whistle. You have no patience if you can't abide having either of these species of wren around...very enthusiastic, perky little fellows. Never had one be a problem with a martin cavity. I (and you) may confuse a Carolina with a Bewicks wren, not sure mine were not Bewicks, actually.

Kill one and I will come for you... :evil:

TheSmiths
Posts: 313
Joined: Mon May 12, 2014 1:02 pm
Location: Western KY
Martin Colony History:

Tried to attract PMs since 2004; began a more ernest attempt in 2014.

2018 — 3 pairs: 1 ASY pair & 1 SY pair in the Trio; 1 SY pair in a supergourd on the gourd multi-rack.

2019 — 6 pairs

Current housing consists of two modified Trio M12Ks at 20' and a round gourd rack at 20'.

We also provide housing utilized by bluebirds, Carolina wrens, house wrens, Carolina chickadees, and tufted titmice. We have housing for great-crested flycatchers and northern flickers but usually have to close them due to starlings.

Re: Please help me identify these birds !

Postby TheSmiths » Wed Feb 19, 2020 4:39 am

Carolina wrens are delightful little birds that do no harm. Watching them come and go has certainly cheered up some of our dreary winter days. You can see photos of a Carolina wren nest here —> https://www.facebook.com/groups/Prognes ... SEARCH_BOX . Photos and videos can be viewed individually by clicking on one then clicking on the left or right side of the photo to move to the next one.

If you go to http://www.sialis.org/nestidalbum.htm and scroll down towards the bottom you can see photos of a bewick wren, a Carolina wren, and a house wren along with their respective nests and eggs. Other types of cavity nesters and their nests can be viewed there as well.


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