Horrible weather in Iowa

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dancingirl76
Posts: 94
Joined: Mon May 16, 2011 10:09 am
Location: Albia, IA

Never in a million years would I have thought we would have 6 inches of snow at my house in southern iowa on May 3rd! But we did.

We have had around 14 PMs staying at our house and gourds so far this spring. When it got light out I went outside to put some fresh jelly out for our orioles and looked up at our gourds that face the north. The snow had stuck to the sides and completed blocked the entrances to those gourds. I lowered the rack to which martins flew out of the open gourds. I had to take my finger and clear out the packed snow from the entrances of the north side gourds. Those gourds had martins in them and they seemed to appreciate the relief!

What a day!
dancingirl76
Diane Porter
Posts: 213
Joined: Thu Jun 07, 2007 7:30 am
Location: Iowa

Oh, Dancing Girl, I feel for you. I'm just a few miles down the road in Fairfield, and it's cold and raining, but we didn't get the snow. I am wondering if our one pair of purple martins will make it through the weekend.
Diane Porter
Fairfield, Iowa
Matt@atx
Posts: 728
Joined: Tue Apr 08, 2008 7:13 am
Location: Buda, TX, south of Austin

I sorry so many of your guys and your birds have to go through this extended cold and snow and the worry is causes you for your birds. Im sure that is stressful for both parties there.
I sure hope it warms up fast for your babies.
2008~(1st yr) 4 pairs, 11 to 12 fledged
2009~(2nd yr) 9 pairs, 41 fledged
2010~(3rd year) 11 pairs. 50 fledged
2011~(4th year) 20 pairs, 23 out of 23 gourds Martin occupied, 3 fledged, the rest died in the drought. (1 new Blue Bird, 3 BB fledged.)
2012~ 26 pairs, approx. 100-110 fledged
Dave Duit
Posts: 1737
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 www.iamartin.org and join.

Hi dancingirl76,
Same situation here in Nevada, Iowa. I cleared off 4 inches of snow that blocked the entrances of 20 of my 48 gourds and 4 of my metal house compartments. Once in the morning and again after work. It is good to see that you cleared yours out too. Best of luck.
Mite control, heat venting, predator protection and additional feeding during bad weather add up to success.
dancingirl76
Posts: 94
Joined: Mon May 16, 2011 10:09 am
Location: Albia, IA

they seem to be very happy today able to get out and fly and eat. just glad i did what i did yesterday morning because by the time i got home from work there hadnt been much melting yet. i would have been upset if i hadnt and the ones didnt make it but they are all good today and doing great
dancingirl76
pmcharter1
Posts: 110
Joined: Tue Apr 03, 2012 2:59 pm
Location: iowa/madrid

Dancing girl,
i feel your pain!, i live in Madrid IA,we have taken a beating with snow and rain, a week ago Monday, 85 , degrees, one day later, cold , rain, snow, it hasnt stopped.i cleaned my housing out after the snow, as it was wet in some of my trio rooms , , been supplimental feeding them scrammbled eggs, they were releived, , first , they were restless, now, i come out lower the house, they fly around above me as i load the feeder up, porches and rooms, and they gobble them up.Its importamt to feed these birds, as their Diet consists of flying insects but during snow and rain, their our none. these birds migrate miles, they have exhausted their resources, to find out, when they get home, they are surprised by bad wheather- no food!. so many landlords finding sys in housing dead, from the south all the way up, because of wheather. i found two in one room so bad, couldnt raise their heads. i brought , them in the house and placed them in nesting bxs, with nesting material, warmed them up
over night, fed them eggs, two nights , they came out of it.if i was to leave them out their, they would have died., i couldnt live with that. so many have died during this spring migration, it would scare me to know nation wide, the impact it had on these great birds.as landlords, i beleive we must do everything we can to ensure thier survival.
good luck
sincerelypm
dancingirl76
Posts: 94
Joined: Mon May 16, 2011 10:09 am
Location: Albia, IA

Wow PM! I know how that is though- if you do nothing and something happens you would feel terrible. If something bad happens and at least you tried... well it is at least bearable that they were given a chance. I took in a baby last year during the day because it was doing very poorly. My hubby thought I was wacked in the head. I would put him back out in the evening and did that for a couple of days and finally he started coming out of it and he survived! It was middle of summer yet the little guy was freezing, couldn't hold his head up to take food so the other babies were getting all the food. I felt so good knowing I helped the little guy and was for sure he would not make it... but he did!
dancingirl76
pmcharter1
Posts: 110
Joined: Tue Apr 03, 2012 2:59 pm
Location: iowa/madrid

dancing girl76,
yes im nuts, 4 yrs ago i had a fledgling get stuck in my porch railing.his wing was messed up, so on came the gloves, and i got him, taped his wing up with the brown streatchy tape for a ankle, modified, cut in half ect, brought him in the house in a nesting box, fed him, i have pictures ill send you,if you want, i named in charter, for his long trip back from where he came.i have pictures of him perched on my finger, as he got stronger, he got braver, and i took the wrap off, he stayed on my finger for awhile, and tried to fly, , first time not good, second, real good, i was able to get close to him, and he would fly to my finger, my best pic.
i lowered one of my trios, had a room not occupied, added fresh nesting matereial, and placed him in their, it was early september in iowa, before heading back, most of my colony was gone, next am, i fed him again, --he took flighta round my head, and left, i know he made it, as the next yr i had that one adult male that would follow me as i mowed, not sure if it was him, but odd, alot tamer than the rest.
thats where my name came from here, pm charter1 , because of one special bird. my wife thinks im crazy, but she understands, she helps with everything,we are in the middle of a gourd rack construction now, but she had a stroke last september, at 47, so now i work with my trios, and everything else we get done is a plus, she took on this hobby with me 15 yrs and still is out there doing nest cks with me, and making eggs to feed, she enjoys it, , i dont expect her to , but im blessed,we enjoy this hobby togeather.
Hope your colony is doing great, wish you the best,
sincerely,
Pm charter1
dancingirl76
Posts: 94
Joined: Mon May 16, 2011 10:09 am
Location: Albia, IA

Oh wow what a story! You are a good person!
Yes I would love to see pics! my email is dancingirl76@yahoo.com
So far my husband hasn't gotten into the hobby. He supports it but I don't know that I can ever see him going to the lengths we all go to lol
Yes- I do think we are all crazy!
dancingirl76
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