Isn't Prenesting With Sevin Dust Ineffective?

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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
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.

Isn't Prenesting With Sevin Dust Ineffective?

Postby Bird Brain » Tue Jan 28, 2020 12:23 am

I've read many times that Sevin dust is rendered inert in just a few days because of moisture in the air. Sevin dust should be applied only at the first sign of mites. Sevin dust should be used reactively, not proactively. Is this accurate ? I keep reading posts where people pre-nested with seven dust but I'm starting to believe this is an ineffective way to utilize the product.
Every time I kill a house sparrow, I make the world a better place.

Conrad Baker
Posts: 316
Joined: Fri Jan 12, 2007 7:43 pm
Location: Paulina, Louisiana

Re: Isn't Prenesting With Sevin Dust Ineffective?

Postby Conrad Baker » Tue Jan 28, 2020 7:07 am

Not sure, but I treat the compartment and pre-nesting material with Sevin dust. I want to control any mites that might arrive on the birds when they first arrive for the season. If you don't, I think the mites can start their own "nest building" in the nesting material, making it difficult to control them later on. If you have Sevin in the corners and under the nest where the mites end up, it will control them. If the Sevin gets wet, it is ineffective. When I put it on my garden plants, unless it gets washed away by rain, it seems to keep the pests off, so I think it will last longer inside the PM houses, than if it was out in the open. Up to you, treat them now, or treat them later but if you don't try to control them from the beginning, you will have nest jumpers, and the Martins might not come back next year.

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: Isn't Prenesting With Sevin Dust Ineffective?

Postby Whippy » Tue Jan 28, 2020 9:04 am

I've always pre-nested with Sevin and have had good results. last year I did have one gourd get covered in mites as I do believe the Sevin was rendered ineffective due to getting wet. I put a teaspoon under the nesting material and within a a day or so all the mites were gone. The other gourds remained dry and I had no mite problem in those all year.

I do like the idea of treating prior to the new arrivals so when they get there they'll begin to lose their mites etc. I suppose to be on the safe side, you can add the Sevin dust once you begin to see arrivals thus knowing it'll be effective since it'll be a fresh application.


Posts: 35
Joined: Fri Mar 18, 2016 10:13 am
Location: Sandwich IL

Re: Isn't Prenesting With Sevin Dust Ineffective?

Postby colliemom » Tue Jan 28, 2020 12:11 pm

I like to have the Sevin in the pre-nest in case the HOSP are checking out the gourds before
they are occupied with martins.

Dave Duit
Posts: 1559
Joined: Tue Nov 25, 2003 2:02 pm
Location: state:Iowa / town:Nevada
Martin Colony History: In 2019, 54 pair with 218 fledged youngsters. 83 total compartments available, 58 Troyer Horizontal gourds and 4 modified trio metal house units, owl cages around all units. Martin educator and speaker. President of the Iowa Purple Martin Organization. Please visit and join.

Re: Isn't Prenesting With Sevin Dust Ineffective?

Postby Dave Duit » Wed Jan 29, 2020 9:52 am

When martins leave at summers end they start to molt near the end of their migration south. Molting in turn typically rids them of bird mites. When they arrive back to their nesting here in the states, the mites that were dormant, become active upon their entry back into their cavity. This is the reason for the importance of cleaning cavities thoroughly at the end of each nesting season after their departure. The martins are the host for these parasites. So, the purpose of some landlords treating cavities prior to their arrival is to stop the mites before the martins arrive.
Mite control, heat venting, predator protection and additional feeding during bad weather add up to success.

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