Subadults in northern Illinois near Lake Michigan?

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Posts: 17
Joined: Fri May 08, 2020 8:57 am
Location: Evanston, Illinois, USA

Dear Friends,
I just put up a new PM house on a golf course in Evanston, Ill, about a mile from Lake Michigan, and am wondering when to expect subadults to arrive in this area. The closest established colony is about a mile away, on the lakeshore; a few of their adult birds returned on May 1. It's always cooler near the lake, and the forecast through Tuesday is for temps to reach only about 50 degrees. Starting Wednesday, though, they will rise into the low 60s. Do you think I should open the compartments then? Of course I will be using decoys, and playing the dawnsong.
All advice welcome, particularly from PM landlords near here who have seen subadults. (I do monitor the PMCA scout-arrival page, but I feel that subadult reporting there tends to be rather spotty compared to reporting of adult arrivals.)
Posts: 672
Joined: Wed Mar 16, 2016 9:17 pm
Location: Raymore, MO

Stuart, don't wait for the subadults to open your housing. It is not uncommon for asy (after second year) birds to start a colony. If they are back in your area and you don't have issues with starlings and sparrows I would open them all up.
Jeff Dean
Posts: 553
Joined: Thu May 26, 2016 9:23 am
Location: tennesse
Martin Colony History: Started colony in 2014. 0 pairs
2015 0 pairs
2016 0 pairs
2017 0 pairs but visitors
2018 1 pair fledged 5
2019 10 pair
2020 25 pair

My colony was started by ASY birds several years ago. You never know when a colony is taken down or are ran out by predators or just over populated and need a place to go. Make the site look lived in pre nest the cavities with pine needles smear a little mud on the landing and on the entrances. I found placing a couple of mirrors taped to the back of a few of the cavities helps a lot too. good luck.
Posts: 17
Joined: Fri May 08, 2020 8:57 am
Location: Evanston, Illinois, USA

Thanks, friends -- I appreciate the advice!

Best wishes,

Posts: 11
Joined: Mon May 18, 2020 7:30 am
Location: central Illinois

Hi Stuart, we live outside of Peoria, IL and started last year with an ASY male and female. Then 2 SY came and both fledged young.
This year we have 3 couples, one Martin being a SY female.
I'd get the dawnsong playing as much as you can since you have a colony nearby!!
The subadults don't seem have flooded to town yet. We have a club we belong to that has 3 houses. So far just ASY that we can see.

Good luck, don't give up
Posts: 3134
Joined: Wed Mar 29, 2006 8:49 am
Location: Indiana/Henry Co.

I am about 3 hours south east of you in Central Indiana. I haven't confirmed any SY's yet but I have seen few littles squabbles going on which I suspect. I just have been busy enough with work and the kids I haven't been able to go outside and watch long enough to confirm if they are SY's or not. I probably have close to 30 pair right now and it's tough to catch them sitting still long enough to get a good look. They are nest building so not sitting still very long.

So to answer your question if the SY's aren't quite here, it wont be long. Good luck.
202160 nests with 187 eggs (6-3-20) HOSP count-9
2020 Currently 42 nest, Fledged approx 164 HOSP count-8
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 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 (11 that nested), 43 fledged.
2010 5 pair, 21 eggs, 16 hatched, 14 fledged.
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