lower house ok?

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

Is it ok to lower the house after the babies are out and flying around?? Also can you actually see mites if you have them?

Posts: 98
Joined: Wed Nov 19, 2003 1:13 pm
Location: Kansas/Valley Center

You can definitely see the mites when you have the house lowered and doing nest inspections. They are very small, but they move very quick for their size. The more you have, the easier it is to see them. If you can't see them on the walls of the house or sides of the gourds then you either have very few, or none at all.

I don't know what to say about permanently lowering the house after they've fledged. Last year I had 2 nests that fledged. the young PM's continued to come back for 7 to 10 days to stay in the gourd and house at night. I would give them at least 2 weeks after all fledging to permanently lower the house.

I kept mine up all summer. It was still a good gathering spot for roosting PM's as well as visitors throughout August. I counted over 25 martins out there in mid-August, so I know I had some extras. I assume they were the new ones who came back this year.

Brian Supernaw
Valley Center, Kansas

Sorry... I meant just to lower to inspect - not perm. I am just confused on when and when not to lower the house for inspection for fear of scaring the babies.

How long after the babies leave the nest will they all start to leave. It has been much quieter at the house for the last couple of days.

Posts: 1480
Joined: Mon Jan 05, 2004 12:30 pm
Location: Missouri/Lone Jack
Martin Colony History: Active since 2003

Some fledglings will hang around for a couple of days to a week or more. But some will leave as soon as they fledge. Last year was my first year where the babies hung around for awhile. The year before when they left they were gone. I would imagine if all your birds are flying you can inspect your house anytime you want. If you have babies about to fledge I would leave it alone.
CUL Lou~Mich

Babysdavid. Yes, it's fine to lower it to clean it out, or to inspect it. Just NOT after I believe 20 days old for the babies inside. After they have all fledged though, it's fine. It's also fine to lower it to half way (Do so as early as possible in the day) in case of severe storms heading your way. DO NOT lower the housing during the dark hours. This will cause the adults to leave, and possibly NOT find their way back in. From all I've read, you'll definately know if you have mites. They look like pepper flakes with legs. They'll be all over you if you aren't careful. CUL Lou
Post Reply