Welcome to the internet's gathering place for Purple Martin enthusiasts
Post Reply

Got whooped by the resident male Bluebird today. Then after he was humiliated and trying to make a retreat, he made the mistake of flying into the territory of the neighboring Kingbird. Who whooped him again. Never thought I'd see a Bluebird whoop a Kingbird.


do the Kingbirds by you ever "interact" with your Martins?

- Steve
Posts: 95
Joined: Thu May 31, 2007 2:24 pm
Location: Kansas

Those Kingbirds are certainly little terrorists!! Mine have settled waaaaay down now that they have most likely fledged their young!! They do interact with the martins taking them almost to the ground and chasing them in the sky continually!! :grin: :grin:

Dawn :grin:
Veronica G
Posts: 338
Joined: Mon Jun 02, 2008 7:36 am
Location: Texas/Edinburg

My Couch's kingbirds and martins do not get along at all! I've seen some pretty bad fights between the two. The kindbirds always start the fights :evil: but the martins seem to hold their own :)
I participate in Project Martin Watch!

It's weird because I didn't even see them last year. The Kingbirds do pursue my martins too. The Martins seem pretty unconcerned with them. though.

I'm talking about Eastern Kingbirds.

Sometimes a Martin and a Kingbird will lock feet and spiral their way down towards the ground, while the Martin gives its characteristic twice-a-second chirp call. They'll let go close to the ground and fly their separate ways. Even with these episodes, the Martins seem unconcerned by them.

- Steve
Last edited by Guest on Tue Jul 08, 2008 9:28 pm, edited 2 times in total.

My kingbirds and martins seem to get along just fine. They both appear to have a BIG problem with any sparrows that are in the vicinityas well.
Glen Webb Jr
Posts: 478
Joined: Tue Jan 06, 2004 1:03 pm
Location: Illinois/Stewardson

I've noticed over the years that as my colony grew, the kingbirds bothered the martins less and less. I remember when my colony was young and with only a few pairs that a kingbird would actually sit on the gourd rack and stare down at the gourds, waiting for a martin to leave. Or it would just push its way into a group of loafing martins and wait for one to go feed and attack them. This is when I noticed something interesting. I think the attacks against martins were so much more common because almost always the martins fought back (ala grappling with the kingbird and tumbling to the ground). I NEVER saw any other species of bird do this with a kingbird except a mockingbird, cuckoo, and meadowlark. Anything else would scream and flee as fast as they could, never fighting back.

Now that the kingbirds no longer bother the martins, I realize just how wimpy those kingbirds truly are. Mockingbirds, cuckoos, thrashers, meadowlarks especially, and redwinged blackbirds are not chased by the kingbirds. Meadowlarks will absolutely not tolerate any attacks by mockingbirds and kingbirds. They fight back something fierce! I've even seen cuckoos do a sort of flip in the air and ride the kingbird to the ground. A screaming kingbird is a funny sight.

I can't count the number of Little Blue Herons I've seen mobbed by Eastern Kingbirds this year. Seems every time I pull up to a lake or swamp, a Kingbird is attacking a LBH.

I also witnessed a mockingbird mobbing a juvenile Bald Eagle about 2 weeks ago. The eagle was on a limb and the mockingbird kept hitting it in the back. Mockingbird finally landed beside the eagle and they seemed at peace for a while.
Post Reply