New nests this late in the season?

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Posts: 490
Joined: Sat Feb 10, 2018 2:43 pm
Location: Raceland, Louisiana

Hi everyone,
I notice a couple of days ago a pair of martins bringing in nest material. Most of my martin chicks have fledged leaving only 4 nests with chicks still in. Today I did my weekly nest check and to my surprise I discovered 3 new nests.
One had 2 eggs the others had green leaves. Does any one know if these are late arrivals or do some Martins have more than one nest cycle? Let me know your thoughts.

Dave Duit
Posts: 1955
Joined: Tue Nov 25, 2003 2:02 pm
Location: Iowa / Nevada
Martin Colony History: In 2020, 60 pair with 285 fledged youngsters. 83 total cavities available, 58 Troyer Horizontal gourds and 4 modified deep trio metal house units, 1 fallout shelter, owl cages around all units. Martin educator and speaker. President and founder of the Iowa Purple Martin Organization. Please visit and join.

Hi Brent,
It is possible to have late nesting by both methods. I suspect that you are seeing a second clutch, although uncommon it can occur.
Mite control, heat venting, predator protection and additional feeding during bad weather add up to success.
Posts: 490
Joined: Sat Feb 10, 2018 2:43 pm
Location: Raceland, Louisiana

Wow! How lucky I am. My season has been interesting and rewarding. I love these birds. Thanks Dave.
Posts: 3158
Joined: Wed Mar 29, 2006 8:49 am
Location: Indiana/Henry Co.

Are they SY or ASY birds? A lot of northern colonies are just getting SY arrivals. I guess it is possible that some SY's left South America on their way north and decided to stop at your place. Most studies I have read show that a majority go close to the site they fledged from. I guess it's always possible they could stop short, or it could be a possibility they were from the south and just got a late start heading back north. I am not sure how often that happens, if ever.....
2021 Currently 62 nest 138 babies plus 110 eggs (6-317-21) HOSP count-9
2020 42 nest, Fledged 164 HOSP count-8
2019- 31 Pair over 100 fledged
2018- 15 pair 49 fledged
2017 3 SY pair nested, 12 eggs total, fledged 10. 4 additional lone SY's
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 43 fledged.
2010 5 pair 14 fledged.
Posts: 490
Joined: Sat Feb 10, 2018 2:43 pm
Location: Raceland, Louisiana

Flyin-Lowe, the one pair I can easily observe are SY Martins. The other two nests caught me off guard but I will try to identify them this week. Thanks.
Posts: 869
Joined: Thu Jan 19, 2017 11:15 pm
Location: Plano, Texas
Martin Colony History: See Signature


I have 12 ASY nests currently either with chicks or just now hatching (nest check tomorrow). I also have several SY martins trying to pair up in their selected gourds. I have not witnessed nest building by them as of yet and I am not sure it will happen but its possible. I also had an ASY female checking things out last week however, I haven't seen her in a while.

In any case. I wouldn't be surprised to see new nests or nesting activity with these late arriving Martins.

Good luck to you.

2016 - late to put up, many visitors
2017 - 1 pair, 3 fledged
2018- 2 pair, 12 fledged
2019 - 4 pair, 21 fledged
2020 - 15 pair, 67 fledged
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