Persistent sparrows

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Purple386
Posts: 7
Joined: Tue Jun 25, 2019 6:17 pm
Location: Louisiana

Hello! I am needing some advice about traps and sparrows. This is the first year I have had trouble with sparrows. We have pulled nests and was able to shoot the female but the male seems to have found another female. He will not land on our fence anymore, only the house, so we can’t shoot him. I ordered a deluxe sparrow trap but it says 3 weeks for shipping. Does anyone know of one with quicker shipping or an easy DIY? Or have any ideas on how to get the male sparrow? I have an S&K house and have no neighbors behind me. I have martin eggs/babies so 3 weeks is just too long. I am in the northwest Louisiana area if anyone has a trap for sale as well. Thank you!
Sarah
C.C.Martins
Posts: 1247
Joined: Fri Apr 14, 2017 11:15 am
Location: Corpus Christi Tx
Martin Colony History: 2016- Visitors.
2017- 5 pair. 15 fledged
2018- 18 pair. 85 fledged
2019- 17 pair. 81 fledged
2020- 25 pair. 111 fledged
2021- 28 pair. 118 fledged
Home colony: mix natural, super and excluder gourds, enlarged compartment house. All SREH.
Satellite colony: Oso Bay Preserve: 12 PMCA excluder gourds, 6 room trio mini castle with enlarged compartments.
2019: Visitors
2020: 3 pair, 11 fledged
2021: 10 pair, 30 fledged
PMCA member

I'm sorry, and know your pain. 13 sparrows dead this season...iv declared war on them all. I'm after two males just won't come in range.
Why can't you shoot when its on the house, just asking understand if its not to hit anything beyond. It can get frustrating because martins chase them off too, finger off the trigger when martins come in.
They are smart buggers, if you can get his mate...
What about a nest box trap, still take a while to get here. Unless someone close by has a trap for you, how about setting up a blind, somewhere it cannot see you and within range of the gun. It takes a bit but they accept it as normal clutter. Iv found that once the male is fixated on a house or gourd their guard drops. I shot one on our roof, it was fixated and chirping just above a gourd rack, I stood on our air conditioning unit, spied him popped up again and he stayed long enough to get shot.
Good luck with that guy hope you get him.
Tom
PMCA member, believer in nest checks, venting, SREH and pest/predator protection.
flyin-lowe
Posts: 3158
Joined: Wed Mar 29, 2006 8:49 am
Location: Indiana/Henry Co.

I am not sure if you have any martins or not. The best way I have found to deal with a sparrow who is skiddish and can't be shot is with a glue trap. These can be disastrous so you must be very cautious. What I do is cut a round hole in a plastic lid from a cottage cheese container or something similar. Make the hole small enough the HOSP can get in but no martins can, attach this hole over the existing hole on the cavity the HOSP is using. Put the glue trap in the cavity and you have to keep it within eye site until you see the HOSP go in. Glue traps cannot be put into a cavity and left unattended as there is always the chance you will get a native bird.

If you can't set a glue trap and then keep your eyes on it you shouldn't use it, and will have to try another method.
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.
Purple386
Posts: 7
Joined: Tue Jun 25, 2019 6:17 pm
Location: Louisiana

We haven’t shot at the house because of the martins and because he goes straight to the compartment he’s building a nest in. We will have to try a blind. My husband duck hunts so he should know what to do. We do have several martins and their eggs are hatching so lots of activity all day. I’ve ordered a nest box trap but will hopefully be able to get them before it gets here. My husband talked about a sticky trap but I’m too scared a younger martin will get caught instead. We’ll have to watch and if it’s only the sparrows going in we might try it. Thanks!
C.C.Martins
Posts: 1247
Joined: Fri Apr 14, 2017 11:15 am
Location: Corpus Christi Tx
Martin Colony History: 2016- Visitors.
2017- 5 pair. 15 fledged
2018- 18 pair. 85 fledged
2019- 17 pair. 81 fledged
2020- 25 pair. 111 fledged
2021- 28 pair. 118 fledged
Home colony: mix natural, super and excluder gourds, enlarged compartment house. All SREH.
Satellite colony: Oso Bay Preserve: 12 PMCA excluder gourds, 6 room trio mini castle with enlarged compartments.
2019: Visitors
2020: 3 pair, 11 fledged
2021: 10 pair, 30 fledged
PMCA member

A blind will be perfect, if hes nest building you got him.
Tell your husband its a blind made for the smartest duck in the world, he can't move and may wait an hour for one shot...oh and he won't be able to eat it haha. If the sparrow is bringing in material I trust he will get him.

Just as flyin lowe suggests if all else fails, and you are desperate you can use the sticky trap, not suggested at all...but I did it last month. Was very nervous, first slimmed the entry way so no martins could enter, placed the trap and watched. It was a pair, they had an egg. Placed the egg right in the middle of the trap and done in 20 minutes. If you go that route, watch very very close and don't leave it unattended. I used a black in color trap so its hidden, there are different colors I guess.
I now have 4 martin eggs in that gourd, subbie pair very happy.
Please let us know how it all goes.
Tom
Tom
PMCA member, believer in nest checks, venting, SREH and pest/predator protection.
Raymondp
Posts: 1
Joined: Mon May 31, 2021 9:18 am
Location: Sullivan in.

Hello Sara I have the same problem with sparrows I have read another forum where an individual removed the nest then broke the eggs. The sparrows abandoned the house. I have an s&k 16 count house that I tried another option. I had 2 pairs once they layer their eggs I simply covered the hole with tape it seems to be working so far but if they try again I will break the eggs. He also said to not worry about the mess he felt the sparrows had cleaned up the eggs before leaving. Good luck and have a good day !
C.C.Martins
Posts: 1247
Joined: Fri Apr 14, 2017 11:15 am
Location: Corpus Christi Tx
Martin Colony History: 2016- Visitors.
2017- 5 pair. 15 fledged
2018- 18 pair. 85 fledged
2019- 17 pair. 81 fledged
2020- 25 pair. 111 fledged
2021- 28 pair. 118 fledged
Home colony: mix natural, super and excluder gourds, enlarged compartment house. All SREH.
Satellite colony: Oso Bay Preserve: 12 PMCA excluder gourds, 6 room trio mini castle with enlarged compartments.
2019: Visitors
2020: 3 pair, 11 fledged
2021: 10 pair, 30 fledged
PMCA member

I'd be careful, have not experienced that but the risk of the male going into a rage and destroying martin eggs and chick's after his eggs are destroyed, should be considered. If he's nest building there won't be eggs yet.
So a few options,
Build a Blind and shoot
Shoot if there are no martins
Glue trap
If you block him out, you run the risk of him going to another cavity.

Finally, do what you can to rid the area of sparrows off season.
Tom
PMCA member, believer in nest checks, venting, SREH and pest/predator protection.
Dave Reynolds
Posts: 1943
Joined: Mon Jan 31, 2011 4:35 pm
Location: Little Hocking, Oh.
Martin Colony History: 2017 Visitors
Satellite Site “Oxbow Golf Course”.
2018 - 15 Pair, 58 Eggs, 36 Fledged
2019 - 26 Pair, 128 Eggs, 97 Fledged
2020 - 30 Pair, 156 Eggs, 137 Fledged
2021 - 30 Pair, 162 Eggs, So far.

Home Site "Little Hocking, Ohio".
2019 - 1 Pair, 5 Eggs, 5 Fledged
2020 - 1 Pair, 4 Eggs, 4 Fledged
2021 - 8 Pair, 36 Eggs, So far

.... I used the sticky traps before, with success and they work, ..... BUT... YOU MUST KEEP AN EYE ON IT AT ALL TIMES.. You don't want to harm any other birds then the Sparrow... Good Luck...

Dave
PMCA Member
Little Hocking, Ohio
Conrad Baker
Posts: 452
Joined: Fri Jan 12, 2007 7:43 pm
Location: Paulina, Louisiana

If you damage the Sparrow eggs or pull out their nest, they will only become enraged, and will certainly come back and rebuild their nest and attack Martin nests. They will attack the Martin nests, pecking their eggs and if they corner a Martin in the housing will kill the Martins. You have to trap or shoot the Sparrows. I have used glue traps before, but you have to constantly monitor the housing, and as soon as the sparrow goes in, remove the glue trap. I put the glue trap with the sparrow in a gallon ziplock and squirt some ether (starting fluid) into the bag and seal it up. Don't use a glue trap if you can't constantly monitor the housing.
white-out
Posts: 110
Joined: Wed Feb 27, 2019 9:21 am
Location: ohio

I bought a nice pellet gun and at 50 yards it's deadly. I found out the hard way, if you don't have a good shot, a good rest or just shaking from the night before, don't shoot! They go from "who cares" to "I know and I see you" from one missed shot.
gotham
Posts: 88
Joined: Sun Apr 21, 2019 10:36 am
Location: Wellington, On, Canada (our summer place)
Martin Colony History: -Wife's family martin house shore Lake Ontario since 1967.
-2017 martin house taken over by starlings.
-2018 did research and purchased new martin house -Lonestar Alamo aluminum 14 compartment with perching rods and nest trays.
-2019 opened new martin house but frustrating season long battle with wily HOSPs (see posts) and martin visitors but no settlers.
-2020 Covid-19-honored request of locals that seasonal home owners stay away and only reached summer home too late to attempt to start colony. Aiming with determination and hope for next year.

Wow! What a problem HOSPs can be!

I am trying to start a martin colony. The first year's attempt was sabotaged by a season long battle with a single, believe it or not (as per post "Chicadee Interference") wily and tenacious HOSP. This second attempt has so far been torpedoed by -first a HOSP pair which I managed to kill with an air rifle, and-today by a single HOSP who has been more risk averse than the original pair and managed to avoid me after a couple of missed shots (as per post "Chicadee Interference Redux"). I am in the process of trying to get a more accurate pellet rifle with a telescopic sight.

I really sympathize with what you have been going through -after today's fiasco I am up and writing this at 3 AM. I am somewhat reassured, though, to see that I am not the only one having a major HOSP issue, nor the only one going to such lengths, in my case, trying to start a martin colony while, in your case, trying to protect one.

I have benefited from seeing the advice being given here. I may have to consider the sticky trap option if all else fails but hope it doesn't come to that.

Like the others, I wish you and your husband luck l and hope to hear of your ultimate success.

Gotham
Purple386
Posts: 7
Joined: Tue Jun 25, 2019 6:17 pm
Location: Louisiana

Great news! My sparrow trap came in yesterday. My husband put it out today when it’s finally not raining and caught both the female and male already! We did lose one Martin egg to the sparrows but otherwise everything seems fine.
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C.C.Martins
Posts: 1247
Joined: Fri Apr 14, 2017 11:15 am
Location: Corpus Christi Tx
Martin Colony History: 2016- Visitors.
2017- 5 pair. 15 fledged
2018- 18 pair. 85 fledged
2019- 17 pair. 81 fledged
2020- 25 pair. 111 fledged
2021- 28 pair. 118 fledged
Home colony: mix natural, super and excluder gourds, enlarged compartment house. All SREH.
Satellite colony: Oso Bay Preserve: 12 PMCA excluder gourds, 6 room trio mini castle with enlarged compartments.
2019: Visitors
2020: 3 pair, 11 fledged
2021: 10 pair, 30 fledged
PMCA member

That is fantastic news, congradulations!!!
Tom
PMCA member, believer in nest checks, venting, SREH and pest/predator protection.
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