No Martins Yet here in Central Indiana

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coderlen
Posts: 2
Joined: Sat Mar 21, 2020 6:23 am
Location: Greenwood, Indiana

I am a first-time Purple Martin Landlord, in Greenwood, just south of Indianapolis. I completed and hoisted my house on its pole on April 21. The house is about 16 feet in the air. There are 16 compartments with SREH (Starling Resistant Entry Holes).

I have had some interest from starlings, but they quickly left when they couldn't get in. Very little interest from the sparrows, I'm happy to say. Some interest from Bluebirds. But no birds are nesting.

I have a Purple Martin decoy mounted on the top of the house. I have never even seen a Pruple Martin, but I definitely haven't had any new species visiting.

Am I too late? What else can I do to attract these birds? Thanks.
deancamp
Posts: 672
Joined: Wed Mar 16, 2016 9:17 pm
Location: Raymore, MO

Is your housing in the open clear of trees and obstructions, they need open flyways. The number one attraction tool is the dawnsong, you should be playing it from predawn until dark. Prenesting with pine needles will not only help them get a headstart on th here nest but will make your housing look lived in. Martins like to nest with other Martins so anything you can do to make it look as if other Martins are living there is better.
Jeff Dean
coderlen
Posts: 2
Joined: Sat Mar 21, 2020 6:23 am
Location: Greenwood, Indiana

deancamp, thanks so much for your prompt reply.

The house is in the middle of my backyard, as far away from the trees as I can get it, and it's about 30 feet from my back porch. It is as open as I can get it, because I know they like open flyways.

What is this dawnsong you mentioned? I guess it is pre-recorded calls of the Martins. Please tell me where I can get it, and the best way to broadcast it. Would the speakers on a laptop be loud enough for them to hear it?

I'll also try your prenesting idea with pine needles. Thanks so much!
Rafke77
Posts: 54
Joined: Sun Jan 12, 2020 10:47 pm
Location: Plymouth, IN
Martin Colony History: 2021 Texas deep freeze, first arrived 4/6.

2020 first arrived 3/27. 21 pair, 92 fledged, 9 non viable.

2019 first time with Martin's, first arrived 4/24 10 pair, 24 fledged, 15 eggs non-viable.

coderlen wrote:
Tue May 04, 2021 8:15 am
deancamp, thanks so much for your prompt reply.

The house is in the middle of my backyard, as far away from the trees as I can get it, and it's about 30 feet from my back porch. It is as open as I can get it, because I know they like open flyways.

What is this dawnsong you mentioned? I guess it is pre-recorded calls of the Martins. Please tell me where I can get it, and the best way to broadcast it. Would the speakers on a laptop be loud enough for them to hear it?

I'll also try your prenesting idea with pine needles. Thanks so much!
Rule of thumb is you want the gourd rack as far away from the trees as the trees are tall, minimum.

As for the song, you can find them on YouTube, just search Purple Martin Dawn song. There are plenty on there. The louder the better, I suggest getting a Bluetooth speaker, this is what I do, I place it at the base of the rack and aim it as close to up as possible.

For attracting them still this time of year, I believe you have plenty of time. This year has been thrown off with the huge cold snap earlier in the year. The second years haven't really made it our way yet. All I have is ASY on my rack right now.

Good luck!
deancamp
Posts: 672
Joined: Wed Mar 16, 2016 9:17 pm
Location: Raymore, MO

The dawnsong is a song that the male Martin will sing at dawn to attract other Martins to the colony. A recording is very effective anytime of the day to draw in Martins to have a look. The more visitors you get the more likely one will stay and want to take up housekeeping. There are different options including a cd, mp3 a bird magnet and as raftke stated you tube so it kind of depends what you want to play it on. I used the bird magnet player as I'm not tech savvy at all. It did work for me but I think the cd sounds a lot better and can be turned up louder. The cd can be purchased on this pmca site. Sorry I can't answer the question of a computer speaker being loud enough. I have read that people have played it on there computer through an external speaker and it worked well.
Jeff Dean
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