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Welcome to the internet's gathering place for Purple Martin enthusiasts
T-Bird
Posts: 106
Joined: Mon Dec 30, 2019 1:08 am
Location: McKinney Texas
Martin Colony History: Rookie Season
Trendsetter 12
PMCA Member

Image

Image

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Trendsetter has been erected! Yahooooooo!
Last edited by T-Bird on Wed Jan 15, 2020 2:01 am, edited 3 times in total.
Rodger Drye
Posts: 671
Joined: Sun Mar 23, 2014 10:07 am
Location: NC/Mt. Pleasant
Martin Colony History: Have been hosting and providing a sanactuary for Purple Martins for 30 years.

T-Bird,

Looks Great Man...! Hope every cavity is filled this year.!

Rodger
PMCA Member
Have been Hosting and Protecting Martin's for 30 years.
T-Bird
Posts: 106
Joined: Mon Dec 30, 2019 1:08 am
Location: McKinney Texas
Martin Colony History: Rookie Season
Trendsetter 12
PMCA Member

Rodger Drye wrote:
Tue Jan 14, 2020 10:17 pm
T-Bird,

Looks Great Man...! Hope every cavity is filled this year.!

Rodger
Thanks Brother!

I would be lying if I said I wasn’t concerned about my mature trees at the back of my property. I hope these purple beauties can find me, and will like my spot for them.
T-Bird
Posts: 106
Joined: Mon Dec 30, 2019 1:08 am
Location: McKinney Texas
Martin Colony History: Rookie Season
Trendsetter 12
PMCA Member

Image
4th Gen Martin Fan
Posts: 1483
Joined: Thu Jul 04, 2013 1:19 pm
Location: TN/Collierville
Martin Colony History: I have been exposed to purple martin sounds in utero when my mother went out to get my father away from his martin colony.
I played around the martin colony every summer and watched as my father maintained his colony. In the late 50's until the 70's he did not notice European Starlings in south Texas.
When old enough, I helped maintain his colony. My primary task was eliminating English House Sparrows with a 1956 Benjamin 317 .177 air rifle.
When I settled into my own home, I started my first colony with an original Trio Castle and Trio Grandpa. When I moved again, I did not put up any martin houses. Frustration with European Starlings in the Southeast US was overwhelming.
Found PMCA Forum and learned about modern enlarged compartments and SREHs.
Inherited my father's last martin house, a Trio Grandma, modified it to modern specifications and have had good results since then.

T-Bird,
That is a great looking Trendsetter 12.
Great picture of your Mother with the Trendsetter 12. I hope your Mother gets to enjoy 3-4 pairs of martins this season. No promises but that would get both of you hooked on purple martins!
Mark.
Firm believer in HOSP/EUST Control, Enlarged Compartments, SREHs, Pole Predator Guards, Owl/Hawk Guards, Mite/Parasite Control, Housing Insulation, and Vents for Compartment Cooling.
PMCA Member.
T-Bird
Posts: 106
Joined: Mon Dec 30, 2019 1:08 am
Location: McKinney Texas
Martin Colony History: Rookie Season
Trendsetter 12
PMCA Member

4th Gen Martin Fan wrote:
Tue Jan 14, 2020 10:39 pm
T-Bird,
That is a great looking Trendsetter 12.
Great picture of your Mother with the Trendsetter 12. I hope your Mother gets to enjoy 3-4 pairs of martins this season. No promises but that would get both of you hooked on purple martins!
4Gen,
We are both very excited. I can’t believe it’s finally up. I need to get some pine needles, and my nest trays, into the compartments. Also still need to get my predator guard.
C.C.Martins
Posts: 802
Joined: Fri Apr 14, 2017 11:15 am
Location: Corpus Christi Tx
Martin Colony History: 2016- didnt know anything about martins, put up an all wrong house in 2016 and had two come by and inspect all the cavities. Left soon after not to return. Learned what i could on PMCA, made adjustments and next year was sucessful.
2017- 5 pair. 15 fledged.
2018- 18 pair. 85 fledged.
2019- 17 pair. 81 fledged
2020- 25 pair. 111 fledged
Home colony: mix natural gourds, house. All SREH.
Satelite colony Oso bay preserve: 12 gourds: PMCA excluder gourds, 6 room trio mino castle with enlarged compartments.
2019: Visitors
2020: 3 pair, 11 fledged
PMCA member

Man that looks good! Good job, hope you fill that up!!!
Tom
PMCA member, believer in SREH and predator protection.
T-Bird
Posts: 106
Joined: Mon Dec 30, 2019 1:08 am
Location: McKinney Texas
Martin Colony History: Rookie Season
Trendsetter 12
PMCA Member

C.C.Martins wrote:
Wed Jan 15, 2020 12:03 pm
Man that looks good! Good job, hope you fill that up!!!
Thank you for your help! Hopefully we will land some new tenants in the very near future!
Whippy
Posts: 598
Joined: Thu Jan 19, 2017 11:15 pm
Location: Plano, Texas
Martin Colony History: 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

T-

When I first started talking about putting a Martin house, yours is what my wife had in mind she would see when I finally pulled the trigger. After much, much research and personal preference, I decided to go the gourd route. When she got home from work and looked out the back window I thought she was going to hit the floor. :lol:

That is a good looking set up you got there. If I ever expand I am going to go that route. My wife will be pleased. If I get my newly acquired Trio and all gourds filled up I may just be able to convince the wife to put up another which will be the Trendsetter like yours.

BTW. You probably have planned on this and I have not read the entire thread so I apologize for possible repeat, but when you pre-nest be sure to add a teaspoon of Sevin dust under the pine needles. I do this every year and after a week or two of the arrivals, they don't spend any time on the perches scratching like crazy. I just finished pre-nesting all of my gourds so it's fresh on my mind.

Coolwhips.
T-Bird
Posts: 106
Joined: Mon Dec 30, 2019 1:08 am
Location: McKinney Texas
Martin Colony History: Rookie Season
Trendsetter 12
PMCA Member

Whippy wrote:
Wed Jan 15, 2020 1:33 pm
T-

When I first started talking about putting a Martin house, yours is what my wife had in mind she would see when I finally pulled the trigger. After much, much research and personal preference, I decided to go the gourd route. When she got home from work and looked out the back window I thought she was going to hit the floor. :lol:

That is a good looking set up you got there. If I ever expand I am going to go that route. My wife will be pleased. If I get my newly acquired Trio and all gourds filled up I may just be able to convince the wife to put up another which will be the Trendsetter like yours.

BTW. You probably have planned on this and I have not read the entire thread so I apologize for possible repeat, but when you pre-nest be sure to add a teaspoon of Sevin dust under the pine needles. I do this every year and after a week or two of the arrivals, they don't spend any time on the perches scratching like crazy. I just finished pre-nesting all of my gourds so it's fresh on my mind.

Coolwhips.
Whipper,
I have a habit of putting the cart before the horse. I really like my Trendsetter, but the more I read, the more it seems that people prefer going the gourd route. I’m not sure I could have gotten away with putting up a gourd rack with the Wife and Mother though. I am looking at adding some gourds to the bottom of it though! :lol:

Someone else mentioned Sevin Dust. Where do you get it ? My original plan was to sprinkle DE powder in the cavities, but some here aren’t on board with that idea.

T-Bird
Whippy
Posts: 598
Joined: Thu Jan 19, 2017 11:15 pm
Location: Plano, Texas
Martin Colony History: 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

Go to home depot and get some Sevin. You can buy 2 or 3 bottles in a pack. I think its 3 per pack.

Here is what I use. I don't recommend using any other product than Sevin dust in the cavities. Everyone here uses it with great success.
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4th Gen Martin Fan
Posts: 1483
Joined: Thu Jul 04, 2013 1:19 pm
Location: TN/Collierville
Martin Colony History: I have been exposed to purple martin sounds in utero when my mother went out to get my father away from his martin colony.
I played around the martin colony every summer and watched as my father maintained his colony. In the late 50's until the 70's he did not notice European Starlings in south Texas.
When old enough, I helped maintain his colony. My primary task was eliminating English House Sparrows with a 1956 Benjamin 317 .177 air rifle.
When I settled into my own home, I started my first colony with an original Trio Castle and Trio Grandpa. When I moved again, I did not put up any martin houses. Frustration with European Starlings in the Southeast US was overwhelming.
Found PMCA Forum and learned about modern enlarged compartments and SREHs.
Inherited my father's last martin house, a Trio Grandma, modified it to modern specifications and have had good results since then.

My Father was extremely frustrated with severe mite infestation in his martin colon in the late 1950s and was convinced that the mites were contributing to early fledging and death of purple martin nestlings. He mentioned it to a friend who had a chicken farm. The man recommended a new insecticide, Sevin Dust, introduced by Union Carbide in 1958. It had made a significant positive impact on the chicken pests in his farm. He recommended Dad try it judicially on purple martin nests. It was such an immediate and profound effect on eliminating the mites in the purple martin nests that Dad continued its use each year. Dad ultimately found that just a pinch of Sevin Dust at the entrance of each purple martin nest was sufficient to control the mites.
One year he was contacted by a University Entomologist (Univ. of Edmonton?) who was gathering data from purple martins landlords across North America. Being a Double BS Major in both Biology and Chemistry, Dad religiously gathered the data requested and submitted his findings. He was contacted personally by the Entomologist to find out why Dad was claiming such a high fledgling rate in his colony. Dad's only explanation was the application of Sevin Dust to eliminate mites. No one else involved in the study reported doing it in their purple martin colonies.
To this day, I wonder if Dad was the one of the first or the first to apply Sevin Dust to purple martin nests. Dad never saw any adverse effects on purple martin adults or nestlings. He was always careful to wash his hands after applying Sevin Dust and has never felt any ill effects from it himself. I asked Dad if he still recommends Sevin dust for nest mites and his immediate answer is Yes!

Be aware that some individuals are vehemently against any pesticides on purple martin nests. Some will quote "Silent Spring" by Rachel Carson as their source. The vast majority have never read the book and only quote what others have said about the book.
Mark.
Firm believer in HOSP/EUST Control, Enlarged Compartments, SREHs, Pole Predator Guards, Owl/Hawk Guards, Mite/Parasite Control, Housing Insulation, and Vents for Compartment Cooling.
PMCA Member.
C.C.Martins
Posts: 802
Joined: Fri Apr 14, 2017 11:15 am
Location: Corpus Christi Tx
Martin Colony History: 2016- didnt know anything about martins, put up an all wrong house in 2016 and had two come by and inspect all the cavities. Left soon after not to return. Learned what i could on PMCA, made adjustments and next year was sucessful.
2017- 5 pair. 15 fledged.
2018- 18 pair. 85 fledged.
2019- 17 pair. 81 fledged
2020- 25 pair. 111 fledged
Home colony: mix natural gourds, house. All SREH.
Satelite colony Oso bay preserve: 12 gourds: PMCA excluder gourds, 6 room trio mino castle with enlarged compartments.
2019: Visitors
2020: 3 pair, 11 fledged
PMCA member

Ill second the sevin dust, does the job. Some folks dont and rely on nest replacements, some folks do but only after seeing mites. I personally believe prevention is the way to win, like cool whips i put in a bit just before the birds arrive to take care of it right off. We have lots of humidity here, can cause bug blooms and effect the sevin dust effectiveness. Sometimes i have to re-treat.
Tom
PMCA member, believer in SREH and predator protection.
T-Bird
Posts: 106
Joined: Mon Dec 30, 2019 1:08 am
Location: McKinney Texas
Martin Colony History: Rookie Season
Trendsetter 12
PMCA Member

OK, Sevin Dust it is. Just stopped by HD and picked up a 3-Pack. But I still need to get my pine needles.
4th Gen Martin Fan
Posts: 1483
Joined: Thu Jul 04, 2013 1:19 pm
Location: TN/Collierville
Martin Colony History: I have been exposed to purple martin sounds in utero when my mother went out to get my father away from his martin colony.
I played around the martin colony every summer and watched as my father maintained his colony. In the late 50's until the 70's he did not notice European Starlings in south Texas.
When old enough, I helped maintain his colony. My primary task was eliminating English House Sparrows with a 1956 Benjamin 317 .177 air rifle.
When I settled into my own home, I started my first colony with an original Trio Castle and Trio Grandpa. When I moved again, I did not put up any martin houses. Frustration with European Starlings in the Southeast US was overwhelming.
Found PMCA Forum and learned about modern enlarged compartments and SREHs.
Inherited my father's last martin house, a Trio Grandma, modified it to modern specifications and have had good results since then.

I do like Coolwhips describes. Prevention is the best medicine. Just before or just after the martins arrive, apply an 1/8 tsp of Sevin dust sprinkled around the edge of the nest and at the very entrance to the nest. I will treat again just before the eggs hatch and approximately day 20. I have not seen mites in my colony in years.
Now a desperate last minute call from a distraught new landlord can show tiny specks crawling all over the martin house, nesting area and the nestlings. By the time you are finished with a bad infestation, the mites will be all over your hands and forearms. It gives me the creeps just thinking about it.
Moisture deactivates the Sevin dust so you may have to treat again after a very rainy or humid spell.

I tried to get small bales of pine needles from Lowe's Garden Center but they were heavily mildewed and I could not stand the smell and sneezing. I gather fresh fallen pine needles, pick out the twigs and pine cones fragments and store them loosely in plastic trash bags without pulling the tie strings close.
I can tell when a purple martin has nested in the pine needles because they will be arranged in a flat circle which I could never duplicate.
Mark.
Firm believer in HOSP/EUST Control, Enlarged Compartments, SREHs, Pole Predator Guards, Owl/Hawk Guards, Mite/Parasite Control, Housing Insulation, and Vents for Compartment Cooling.
PMCA Member.
Rodger Drye
Posts: 671
Joined: Sun Mar 23, 2014 10:07 am
Location: NC/Mt. Pleasant
Martin Colony History: Have been hosting and providing a sanactuary for Purple Martins for 30 years.

T-Bird,

Back in the day when my Dad hosted his Colony 1950’s, 1960’s, and 70’s. He used Sevin Dust and even a dash of Sulfur. Since he did’t do Nest Checks bc he had so many Gourd’s. He never had a problem with mites.

I use both powered and liquid Sevin with Great success.

It is true some folks do not use Chemicals and that’s fine. To each his own I guess... I regularly do Nest Checks and I cannot stand by and watch hatchlings being eaten by Mites...!

Rodger
PMCA Member
Have been Hosting and Protecting Martin's for 30 years.
T-Bird
Posts: 106
Joined: Mon Dec 30, 2019 1:08 am
Location: McKinney Texas
Martin Colony History: Rookie Season
Trendsetter 12
PMCA Member

Alright Alright Alright! I have finally gotten my cavities dusted and pre-nested with pine needles. Thank you Whipster for the lead on a fantastic place to acquire some pine needles.

Am I forgetting anything?
Last edited by T-Bird on Mon Jan 20, 2020 11:16 am, edited 1 time in total.
deancamp
Posts: 412
Joined: Wed Mar 16, 2016 9:17 pm
Location: Raymore, MO

Nice looking house. I tried to read through the thread, but may have missed it. Are you set up to play the dawn song to attract Martins in to check out your housing? This really helped me get my colony started.
T-Bird
Posts: 106
Joined: Mon Dec 30, 2019 1:08 am
Location: McKinney Texas
Martin Colony History: Rookie Season
Trendsetter 12
PMCA Member

deancamp wrote:
Sun Jan 19, 2020 8:05 pm
Nice looking house. I tried to read through the thread, but may have missed it. Are you set up to play the dawn song to attract Martins in to check out your housing? This really helped me get my colony started.
I am not familiar with that. Could you tell me more about it? Thank you!
deancamp
Posts: 412
Joined: Wed Mar 16, 2016 9:17 pm
Location: Raymore, MO

The adult male Martin will sing the Dawn Song to attract other Martins to his colony. He sings this predawn. You can play a CD, mp3 or other recording of the Dawn Song through some type of outside speakers or the like. Any Martin within ear shot will come in to investigate and will have a look at your housing to see if they might want to take up housekeeping. I personally would play it all day long, others prefer only morning and maybe evening. I'm sure others will chime in with their thoughts and experiences. I hope you enjoy the ride.
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