first time for purple martins

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dkaymon
Posts: 7
Joined: Tue Feb 11, 2020 7:09 pm
Location: fl

first time for purple martins

Postby dkaymon » Thu Feb 20, 2020 1:04 pm

I put up a new plastic sk martin house about three weeks ago. I have been playing a cd with sounds of an established colony for several days. Some sky high fly-bys but nothing too close until today! What I think was an adult male circled the house several times and was within about 20 feet of it chirping but then flew away. What happened? should I have shut off the cd while he was nearby? Man, I thought he was going to land on the house!

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: first time for purple martins

Postby Whippy » Thu Feb 20, 2020 1:25 pm

Do you have decoys?

Also. Where is the song being played from. They are good at pinpointing it. So if it's playing 20 feet from the house, they'll know it. Could be why he veered off. Just don't know. I always put my player at the base of the pole when I started. I did get a lot of flybys as well. I never could determine if they stopped because of the dawn song playing or if they didn't stop if the dawn song was playing.

I always figured it to be a cat and mouse game.

I hope others have a more definitive response with their experience.

Good luck to you.

Coolwhips.

dkaymon
Posts: 7
Joined: Tue Feb 11, 2020 7:09 pm
Location: fl

Re: first time for purple martins

Postby dkaymon » Thu Feb 20, 2020 1:41 pm

Player is at the corner of our house, about 50 feet away from the base of the pole. I do not have decoys.

dkaymon
Posts: 7
Joined: Tue Feb 11, 2020 7:09 pm
Location: fl

Re: first time for purple martins

Postby dkaymon » Thu Feb 20, 2020 1:43 pm

Thanks for your response>
.

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

Re: first time for purple martins

Postby Conrad Baker » Thu Feb 20, 2020 1:51 pm

Did you only put up one house? Is it out in the open, or close to trees or other buildings??

dkaymon
Posts: 7
Joined: Tue Feb 11, 2020 7:09 pm
Location: fl

Re: first time for purple martins

Postby dkaymon » Thu Feb 20, 2020 2:05 pm

I only put one house about 50 feet from our house and about 60 feet from nearest tree, but out in open field. thanks.

brent
Posts: 116
Joined: Sat Feb 10, 2018 2:43 pm
Location: Raceland, Louisiana

Re: first time for purple martins

Postby brent » Thu Feb 20, 2020 4:39 pm

Hey dkaymon,

It's still early. I had my first ASY male the first year show up around this time. This year, so far, I have about 16 birds and expecting at least 32. This is my 3rd year. Good luck and be patient. If you have an open location and it's inviting I think you'll do fine. Keep us posted.

Brent

jhcox
Posts: 421
Joined: Thu May 26, 2016 9:23 am
Location: tennesse
Martin Colony History: Started colony in 2014. First pair to stay and raise young in 2018.

Re: first time for purple martins

Postby jhcox » Thu Feb 20, 2020 4:44 pm

Is the S&K house the red and silver barn style. If it is you can expand the rooms to make them bigger. You can also close off the top attic part and if you get one of the green bird magnet song boxes you can put it in that attic it just fits. It also plays the Dawn song for Purple Martin. And you can also place a decoy on the roof of the house and place one or two inside the compartments. With the bird magnet In the attic it makes them possibly believe that there’s Martin’s in the house and then when they look in they will see the decoys inside and possibly think it’s an established colony. Hope this helps.

JHCox

dkaymon
Posts: 7
Joined: Tue Feb 11, 2020 7:09 pm
Location: fl

Re: first time for purple martins

Postby dkaymon » Thu Feb 20, 2020 6:15 pm

Thanks for the excellent suggestions everyone. I will definitely post any progress I may have.

deancamp
Posts: 241
Joined: Wed Mar 16, 2016 9:17 pm
Location: Raymore, MO

Re: first time for purple martins

Postby deancamp » Thu Feb 20, 2020 7:09 pm

I think you're on the right track. I don't believe it is unusual at all for him to not land. What I have witnessed is that they are skeptical at first and skiddish to land. As they get more comfortable they hang around longer, land, peek in holes and eventually go in a holes to check out the inside. I personally don't think the CD scared him off. Could have been just checking out your setup because of all the chatter and is from a nearby colony. The good news is your chatter brought him in to have a look and I'm guessing it will bring others in as well. Eventually one will take to your setup and start drawing others in. Good Luck and keep us posted.

dkaymon
Posts: 7
Joined: Tue Feb 11, 2020 7:09 pm
Location: fl

Re: first time for purple martins

Postby dkaymon » Fri Feb 21, 2020 9:28 am

Thanks dcamp. I am just so unsure of how this works, but very hopeful for success. also, I have decoys on the way. Sunday delivery.

deancamp
Posts: 241
Joined: Wed Mar 16, 2016 9:17 pm
Location: Raymore, MO

Re: first time for purple martins

Postby deancamp » Fri Feb 21, 2020 2:06 pm

We're all still learning, part of the fun. Each bird is different and might react differently to the same thing.Keep watching and don't be afraid to tweek things a little bit to see if you get a different (better)reaction.

dkaymon
Posts: 7
Joined: Tue Feb 11, 2020 7:09 pm
Location: fl

Re: first time for purple martins

Postby dkaymon » Sat Feb 22, 2020 8:47 am

Bluebirds are checking out my pm house now. Should i just close the entrances? Still no martins.

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

Re: first time for purple martins

Postby Conrad Baker » Sat Feb 22, 2020 10:27 am

I would heartily agree with jhcox. Close off the top (attic) compartments. They are impossible to do nest checks, and if you get sparrows nesting in there you will have a difficult time removing their nest without pulling the roof off. I closed mine off with some plastic door covers available from S&K, but you can also glue some screen over the holes to allow some additional ventilation in the hotter months. I also increased the size of the compartments by cutting the outline in interior wall to make the compartments larger. Each nest compartment consists of two 6 x 6 areas.


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