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Purple Martins (1 Viewer)

BryanP

Little known member
Canada
Hi Jefferson Shank,

A wonderful story and a great photo essay. Glad to see all the good work.

When I was growing up on the Canadian prairies there was a big push for folks to build Purple Martin nest boxes. Some of the one I saw back then were so big they had a 4x4 post in each corner with each post anchored in concrete. This push contributed greatly to the re-establishment of populations all across the Canadian prairies.
There is a Marina at Newcastle island Provincial park in British Columbia that has multiple martin boxes on each piling. When the tide is up the boxes are a mere 4 or 5 feet off the dock. Both the birds and the boaters seem to get along just fine.
The photos below are from that marina.
Cheers,
Bryan
 

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Jeff Hopkins

Just another...observer
United States
We have a colony set up at Leaser Lake NW of Allentown, PA. They started three years ago with 18 "gourds". Last year they put in another 18 and they all were mostly full. We banded over 100 nestlings last summer. So we're adding another set of 18 on the opposite shore of the lake.
 

BryanP

Little known member
Canada
Great to hear, I've noticed on my home turf on the prairies that even non birders will build and put up Purple Martin boxes. All you have to do to motivate them is mention how many mosquitos they eat a day.
Cheers,
Bryan
 

Jefferson Shank

Well-known member
They eat an amazing amount of insects a day. One bird can eat up to 2,000 mosquitoes per day plus a bunch of other insects. That's a lot of insects!
 
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BryanP

Little known member
Canada
They eat an amazing amount of insects a day. One bird can eat up to 2,000 mosquitoes per day plus a bunch of other insects. That's a lot of insects!

Important when one is living on the prairies or the Canadian north where clouds of mosquitos can darken the sky or so it seems.
Cheers,
Bryan
 

KenM

Well-known member
Jefferson Hi,
All I can add fwiw, is that I saw my first Purple Martins in a colony, in a marina at Sauvie Island, Portland Oregon c5 years ago, at the time it was mentioned that they were in decline? Thus it’s good to know that they are re-or/colonising new areas with the introduction of gourds and boxes. :t:
 
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