Solitary confinement about over...finally.

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Doug Martin - PA
Posts: 1938
Joined: Thu Mar 25, 2004 10:47 am
Location: Pennsylvania/Fombell
Martin Colony History: First pair in 2009 after 28 years of trying. 3 pairs 2010, 17 pairs 2011 and 35-45 pairs since. Many additional colonies are now springing up around mine in an area once completely void of Martins. I offer 50 compartments at my site consisting of primarily Excluder II gourds on Gemini racks. Also a wooden T-14. I utilize electric fence type predator guards on the base of the poles. Supplemental feeding is crucial in maintaining my colony. I platform feed throughout the season as needed. My site tends to be a stop over point for additional birds as they migrate further north.

Looks good for this lonely male (Buddy) that came in on the 10th to finally get some company this week.

Conditions will be favorable for migration most all of next week and the calendar also agrees it is time too.

The only company he has had is me, and the bluebird pair that is hanging around. They have also learned to take tossed crickets too. It's funny how they were almost jealous watching the Martin feed. Then they began to also join in to the arm movement of tossing. They don't really catch them in the air but they love to grab them off the patio when I toss crickets to them. They get the small and not so perfect ones.

My Martin is still doing very well. He will be glad when another bird shows up though. I had 2 pairs that laid eggs before the snowy weather in May hit last year and delayed the season here. They fledged weeks before the others.

So I expect that other male any day now.

Take care and enjoy all the new arrivals this coming week in the northern half. I know I will.

Doug
Supplemental feeding plays a major role in western Pennsylvania. Finally got my 1st pair in 2009 after 28 years of effort. 3 pairs in 2010. 17 pairs in 2011. 35 pairs and 150 young in 2012 & 2013. Plus a new 22 pair colony right down the road from me.
ToyinPA
Posts: 2166
Joined: Mon Apr 10, 2006 6:07 pm
Location: PA/Avis
Martin Colony History: The 1972 St. Agnes flood wiped out all the Martins in my area. One day, in 1997-98, 5 or 6 Martins landed on the power wires crossing my back yard. I had no house for them. They kept coming back day after day. We got a martin house a few weeks later & they have been coming back every year since. I average 12-15 pair per year.

I'm sure your lone male would enjoy some feathered company.

They've been kind of stalled due to the weather. Looks like temps will increase as will the southern winds. That should push them northward.

Mine don't normally arrive until late March early April. My colony has greatly decreased in size in the last couple years. I went from 17 pair to 7 pair. I blame it on neighbors huge trees. Sadly there is nothing I can do about it.

Toy in PA
PMCA Member
flyin-lowe
Posts: 3142
Joined: Wed Mar 29, 2006 8:49 am
Location: Indiana/Henry Co.

Last year was the first year I've ever had returns in March, I average the 2nd week of April or so. Curious to see when the roll in this year.

Toy, have you seen any hawk attacks from the neighbors trees? I've seen, and read on here that an established colony will tolerate trees as long as they are not being used by hawks to stage. I posted pictures on here many years ago of two colonies I stumbled across totally surrounded by trees. One of them had branches touching the PM house. I was shocked but had several people say they were not surprised as long has predators weren't bothering them. This was in Indiana were the populations are not near as high as they are in the south.
2021 Currently 62 nest 138 babies plus 110 eggs (6-317-21) HOSP count-9
2020 42 nest, Fledged 164 HOSP count-8
2019- 31 Pair over 100 fledged
2018- 15 pair 49 fledged
2017 3 SY pair nested, 12 eggs total, fledged 10. 4 additional lone SY's
2016 1 pair fledged 4
2015 Visitors
2014 Visitors
2013 Moved 6 miles away, 1 pair fledged 2.
2012 30 pair fledged 100.
2011 12 pair 43 fledged.
2010 5 pair 14 fledged.
ToyinPA
Posts: 2166
Joined: Mon Apr 10, 2006 6:07 pm
Location: PA/Avis
Martin Colony History: The 1972 St. Agnes flood wiped out all the Martins in my area. One day, in 1997-98, 5 or 6 Martins landed on the power wires crossing my back yard. I had no house for them. They kept coming back day after day. We got a martin house a few weeks later & they have been coming back every year since. I average 12-15 pair per year.

flyin-lowe wrote:
Fri Mar 19, 2021 5:28 pm
Last year was the first year I've ever had returns in March, I average the 2nd week of April or so. Curious to see when the roll in this year.

Toy, have you seen any hawk attacks from the neighbors trees? I've seen, and read on here that an established colony will tolerate trees as long as they are not being used by hawks to stage. I posted pictures on here many years ago of two colonies I stumbled across totally surrounded by trees. One of them had branches touching the PM house. I was shocked but had several people say they were not surprised as long has predators weren't bothering them. This was in Indiana were the populations are not near as high as they are in the south.
Nope no hawks. I've had a few Red tails fly over, but the Martins & Chimney Swifts chase them off. Red tails aren't usually after Martins. I have crows & grackles in the area that keep them away too. The trees have reached a good 80 feet in height. To date I've not seen any birds nesting those trees. The martins tolerated the trees until they got really tall. It makes me sick I lost most of my colony to a jerk neighbor no one talks to. Seriously neighbors don't speak to them. We've all tried. They planted a forest & put up a high wood fence. I could say more, but I won't.

I know of an Amish farm that has one martin house just a few feet from their house, with a big maple tree about 10 feet away. Another house is touching the tree. Another Amish farm has green houses, with tons of people coming & going. One house is only a few feet from the one green house.

Best wishes or a great season.

Toy in PA
PMCA Member
Doug Martin - PA
Posts: 1938
Joined: Thu Mar 25, 2004 10:47 am
Location: Pennsylvania/Fombell
Martin Colony History: First pair in 2009 after 28 years of trying. 3 pairs 2010, 17 pairs 2011 and 35-45 pairs since. Many additional colonies are now springing up around mine in an area once completely void of Martins. I offer 50 compartments at my site consisting of primarily Excluder II gourds on Gemini racks. Also a wooden T-14. I utilize electric fence type predator guards on the base of the poles. Supplemental feeding is crucial in maintaining my colony. I platform feed throughout the season as needed. My site tends to be a stop over point for additional birds as they migrate further north.

The other male showed up today. He is much more vocal than the first male. Stayed out feeding until after 7:30 and almost dark.

He went right into the gourd I figured. It was the other early nest from last year.

These early arrivals were the males from the 2 nests that eggs were laid before the cold May weather last year. Both nests fledged weeks ahead of all the others.

Doug
Supplemental feeding plays a major role in western Pennsylvania. Finally got my 1st pair in 2009 after 28 years of effort. 3 pairs in 2010. 17 pairs in 2011. 35 pairs and 150 young in 2012 & 2013. Plus a new 22 pair colony right down the road from me.
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