Owl Cage Inquiry

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avesrun
Posts: 1103
Joined: Tue Apr 30, 2013 1:10 pm
Location: Iowa/West Des Moines
Martin Colony History: Home Site: 2017- 0
2016 - 1st pair, fledged 5
Satellite Site: 2017 (3rd season)
34 pair
Fledged- 102

Owl Cage Inquiry

Postby avesrun » Thu Mar 26, 2020 11:18 pm

Hello- Wondering what kind of behavior to expect from returning martins that are going to find 2x4 welded wire cages around their houses and gourds. Yes I'm fretting about their adapting to the change. I did cut most of the 2x4 openings in front of entrances to make them 4x4. Thanks for any recounts/memories of how your martins adapted to cages. Have a great season everyone!
TimG
PMCA Member
Home Site: 2012-15 visitors
2016 - 1st pair, fledged 5
2017-18 Zero
2019- possible 2 pair!
Satellite Site: 2014 - visitors
2015 - 2 pair, fledged 9
2016 - 13 pair, fledged 44
2017 - 31 pair, fledged 118
2018 - 44 pair, 163 fledged

Whippy
Posts: 417
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 - ?

Re: Owl Cage Inquiry

Postby Whippy » Fri Mar 27, 2020 8:50 am

Aves,

I don't have any experience with owl cages on my colony but I have seen a lot of Martins interacting with them. Once they get used to it they just bust right on through the squares to their cavity. I've seen many using the cage as a perch.

Site fidelity is strong with the Martins so I really don't think you will run any of them off. My guess is that you will increase in numbers this year. Seems that every body here has experienced an increase in residents to some amount or another.

I think you will be fine.

I look forward to replies fro those who have done the same thing.

Coolwhips.

Dave Duit
Posts: 1560
Joined: Tue Nov 25, 2003 2:02 pm
Location: state:Iowa / town:Nevada
Martin Colony History: In 2019, 54 pair with 218 fledged youngsters. 83 total compartments available, 58 Troyer Horizontal gourds and 4 modified trio metal house units, owl cages around all units. Martin educator and speaker. President of the Iowa Purple Martin Organization. Please visit www.iamartin.org and join.

Re: Owl Cage Inquiry

Postby Dave Duit » Fri Mar 27, 2020 11:55 am

Hey there Tim,
I added perches where I cut out each wire to make the 4 x 4-inch openings. I used the smallest diameter PEX tubing, cut a split in the pex, filled it with an exterior caulk, silicone or lexel and then snaped the split over the horizontal wire in the 4 x 4-inch openings. Since that time I have upgraded to goat fence as an owl cage because it is all 4 x 4-inch mesh size. I also added perches to the new goat fence cage.
Mite control, heat venting, predator protection and additional feeding during bad weather add up to success.

daveh
Posts: 643
Joined: Wed Oct 22, 2008 7:40 am
Location: Kingsville Mo.

Re: Owl Cage Inquiry

Postby daveh » Fri Mar 27, 2020 12:27 pm

I caged everything up 4-5 years ago and don't recall any problem. They zip right on thru the 2x4 inch wire like it's not there. The babies will will have some problem but will figure it out eventually.

Dave
PMCA member

avesrun
Posts: 1103
Joined: Tue Apr 30, 2013 1:10 pm
Location: Iowa/West Des Moines
Martin Colony History: Home Site: 2017- 0
2016 - 1st pair, fledged 5
Satellite Site: 2017 (3rd season)
34 pair
Fledged- 102

Re: Owl Cage Inquiry

Postby avesrun » Sat Mar 28, 2020 3:31 pm

Hey there Tim,
I added perches where I cut out each wire to make the 4 x 4-inch openings. I used the smallest diameter PEX tubing, cut a split in the pex, filled it with an exterior caulk, silicone or lexel and then snaped the split over the horizontal wire in the 4 x 4-inch openings. Since that time I have upgraded to goat fence as an owl cage because it is all 4 x 4-inch mesh size. I also added perches to the new goat fence cage.
Thanks Dave- where did you purchase/find the Goat fencing? Is it same guage/material and similar weight? I may be building cages for my home setups for next season and would much rather use 4x4 welded wire. I ended up using what's called "vinyl undersill trim" for perching for 4x4 entrance cutouts (thank you Kathy Freeze). Hope to see you around this season and hope your Nevada colony thrives once again!
PMCA Member
Home Site: 2012-15 visitors
2016 - 1st pair, fledged 5
2017-18 Zero
2019- possible 2 pair!
Satellite Site: 2014 - visitors
2015 - 2 pair, fledged 9
2016 - 13 pair, fledged 44
2017 - 31 pair, fledged 118
2018 - 44 pair, 163 fledged

avesrun
Posts: 1103
Joined: Tue Apr 30, 2013 1:10 pm
Location: Iowa/West Des Moines
Martin Colony History: Home Site: 2017- 0
2016 - 1st pair, fledged 5
Satellite Site: 2017 (3rd season)
34 pair
Fledged- 102

Re: Owl Cage Inquiry

Postby avesrun » Sat Mar 28, 2020 3:32 pm

I caged everything up 4-5 years ago and don't recall any problem. They zip right on thru the 2x4 inch wire like it's not there. The babies will will have some problem but will figure it out eventually.

Dave
Thanks for the note Daveh!
PMCA Member
Home Site: 2012-15 visitors
2016 - 1st pair, fledged 5
2017-18 Zero
2019- possible 2 pair!
Satellite Site: 2014 - visitors
2015 - 2 pair, fledged 9
2016 - 13 pair, fledged 44
2017 - 31 pair, fledged 118
2018 - 44 pair, 163 fledged

avesrun
Posts: 1103
Joined: Tue Apr 30, 2013 1:10 pm
Location: Iowa/West Des Moines
Martin Colony History: Home Site: 2017- 0
2016 - 1st pair, fledged 5
Satellite Site: 2017 (3rd season)
34 pair
Fledged- 102

Re: Owl Cage Inquiry

Postby avesrun » Sat Mar 28, 2020 3:33 pm

Thanks Whip! I was basically full last season with 49 of 52 cavities used but a few cavities failed due to owl/hawk or other cause. I hope the owl cages if nothing else increases nest success by any percentage! Take care and happy 2020 season!

[2quote=Whippy post_id=290238 time=1585317020 user_id=19544]
Aves,

I don't have any experience with owl cages on my colony but I have seen a lot of Martins interacting with them. Once they get used to it they just bust right on through the squares to their cavity. I've seen many using the cage as a perch.

Site fidelity is strong with the Martins so I really don't think you will run any of them off. My guess is that you will increase in numbers this year. Seems that every body here has experienced an increase in residents to some amount or another.

I think you will be fine.

I look forward to replies fro those who have done the same thing.

Coolwhips.
[/quote]
PMCA Member
Home Site: 2012-15 visitors
2016 - 1st pair, fledged 5
2017-18 Zero
2019- possible 2 pair!
Satellite Site: 2014 - visitors
2015 - 2 pair, fledged 9
2016 - 13 pair, fledged 44
2017 - 31 pair, fledged 118
2018 - 44 pair, 163 fledged


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