Purple Martins breed in the North America and winter in South America.  The purple area on the map shows the winter (non-breeding) range of the Purple Martin in South America and the breeding range in North America.  You will only find Purple Martins in the Americas.  You will not find them in Europe, Asia, or Africa.


In North America the breeding range of the eastern species, Progne subis subis ranges from Florida through southern parts of Canada.  Progne subis hesperia, occupies the southwestern deserts of the U.S. and Mexico and Progne subis arboricola breeds in the Pacific Northwest.

Molting begins at the end of the breeding season in North America, and is slowed or halted, during the migration to South America.  The Purple Martin spends its non-breeding season in eleven different South American countries: Colombia, Venezuela, Ecuador, Peru, Bolivia, Paraguay, Argentina, Brazil, British Guyana, Suriname, and French Guiana, with the majority of Purple Martins wintering over in Brazil.  Brazil has a tropical to temperate climate, an extensive river system, and contains over 60% of the Amazon rainforest.