heath house

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What can I say about this house but ARGH!! My wonderful husband bought it for me for Christmas and I was so excited (first year to try a multi room house). I wish I would have read on here all the stuff about these houses because I would have sent it back. So, for all that might be considering getting one...

1) some of the porch railings fell off soon after I got the house up.

2) pretty much impossible to get into a room. the floor panel comes off so how you are to do this without the nest falling out I didn't figure out and any room on the top level you can not get to the floor to open. It was difficult just getting the sevin dust under the nest yest.

3) they apparently do not make any SREH or porch dividers for this house. I have emailed the co. about both and they don't make them. Sev. of you told me to get porch dividers but I guess that is out of the ?.

What is interesting is that I have seen many houses around my neck of the woods with what looks like the same house. Leads me to wonder how many people actually do nests checks, etc.

Anyway, at least some martins liked it and we got sev. babies added to the population! It's just not the easiest of houses to manage.

Just my 2 cents.

Lisa :???:
Posts: 2216
Joined: Thu Jan 08, 2004 1:58 pm
Location: TX/Alvin
Martin Colony History: Erected 1st house in 1997. Birds were checking it out before Mike got down from the ladder. Six cavities had a little colony 1st year. Grown to 88 cavities all gourds with near 100% occupancy. Most important factor for success is rain = bugs.

Most of those people around your place probably don't do nest checks.

They probably let S&S nest in their houses, too.

You are learning. Your next house will be more to your specifications and will perform to your expectations. I'm sure you can get lots of recommendations right here on the Forum. :grin:

Just took a look at a picture of one - all is not lost . Next year have your husband buy/build a real house and fill the Heath with S&S traps. Locate it where you won't catch PMs.
Joe D. Bryant

babysdavid wrote:What can I say about this house but ARGH!!

Lisa :???:
Lisa, there's nothing more to say. You said it all with "ARGH!". :lol:
Al Denton
Posts: 1468
Joined: Tue Nov 11, 2003 7:31 pm
Location: Carolina Shores NC
Martin Colony History: New site and housing for 2018...Trendsetter 12. 1 pair of subs. Fledged 5...2019...11 pairs

Lisa, That's too bad about the Heath houses. I have one myself, and really like the looks of it...but as far as a good functional martin house it really ain't "up to snuff". I've thought several times of modifying the thing, but get no further than scratching and shaking my head. What a waste. Al
2018-new site...1 pair
2019-11 pairs
2020-15 pairs

Well like I said at least I had some success with it I just really was hoping to be a more hands on landlord. :grin: There is another Heath house not too far from here and that thing is PACKED but they are near the water. All the houses near the lakes or big ditches are VERY popular!

There's always next year!


I too started with the Heath house and soon found it lacking. I did however make a couple of modifications that worked for my first two seasons before I switched to a Watersedge Suite with crescent openings.

For porch dividers you can go down to the local home depot or Lowes and buy the sheet metal flashing for roofing. Using tin snips you can cut them out and then fasten them where the walls are connected on the house. The one major drawback to adding the porch dividers is you increase the houses profile which kept me up many nights during storms wondering if the wind would blow the house over.

I also cut large holes between compartments basically making every two compartments into one large room. The PM's loved it as well as the Starlings. So if you do that be sure to sharpen your marksmanship skills.

House checks were almost impossible. I would lower the house and early going would drop the bottom set of compartments down in order to look into those nests. I did not do this once the eggs hatched for fear that the babies would jump out and get all mixed up. For the upper compartment I used a flashlight and a little mirror to look in through the entrance....I didn't see much.

When I switched houses I went with one with the crescent openings to eliminate the starling problem. Now all I deal with are the sparrows which are harder to shoot. I would look for a house with oversized compartments and not just double compartments that are separated with a hole. The Watersedge Suite house has the hole separation which I will cut larger this winter to make it one big opening for next year. The young all want to be in the same room to compete for the food. If you have a wall and a small door then they all go into the front room and nobody uses the back. If you make it one big room then they will have plenty of room and be cooler during hot summer days.

Good luck.
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