The house for purple martins is an artificial nesting site purposefully built to provide a nesting habitat and safe home for the purple martin bird species. Purple martins prefer to nest in colonies and large open communities, so these structures are almost always built to accommodate multiple birds.
In general, the purple martin house is composed of several condos, or compartments, each of which is equipped with a separate entrance and nesting chamber. The house may also be equipped with a communal entrance or porch, allowing the birds to gather in a larger space to socialize.
Most purple martin houses also come with a sturdy pole for the structure to sit on, adding an extra layer of stability and security to the birds’ habitat. It is important to note that the house should be placed in an open area, away from any trees and other obstructions, as the birds need an unobstructed flight path in order to access each compartment.
How big should a purple martin house be?
A purple martin house should be at least 12 feet tall, with at least 6 compartments, each at least 6 inches wide, 12 inches tall, and 12 inches deep. The compartments should have an entrance hole that is 2-1/2 inches in diameter.
Additionally, the purple martin house should have a landing platform located underneath the compartments. This landing platform should be at least a few feet in diameter, with an area outside the compartments for the birds to feed and a roof for protection from the elements.
The house should also be made of galvanized steel or aluminum, which is not subject to decay and rot like wood sometimes is. Lastly, it is important to place the house in an open area with good air circulation and away from trees and other objects that could be used as perches by other birds or predators.
Do purple martins live in birdhouses?
Yes, purple martins do live in birdhouses. Purple martins are cavity nesters, which means they nest in hollowed out areas, like tree cavities or birdhouses. Birdhouses specifically designed for purple martins have become popular in North America and can be purchased at many backyard bird supply stores.
These birdhouses typically resemble a four- or six-floor apartment building, and are installed in the late winter or early spring. Purple martins prefer to nest in large, open colonies and will often return to the same nesting neighborhood year after year.
To help attract purple martins to their backyard, many homeowners also offer nesting materials, such as small pieces of twine and yarn, small animal fur, and dry grass in the spring.
What color should a martin bird house be?
A martin bird house should be painted a light color. Typically, the best color for a martin house is white, as it helps to attract the birds and can make it easier for them to find it. Additionally, white helps to reflect the sun’s heat to keep the house cooler in hot weather.
If you can’t find a white house, shades of ivory, blue, and even light tan should do the trick. However, it is important to avoid dark colors, as they will absorb heat and make the house too hot in the summer.
Additionally, dark colors can also make it harder for the birds to find the house, as they are not as visible.
Do martin houses need a perch?
Yes, martin houses need a perch because it provides the martins with a place to perch while they nest, and it can be used to help exclude sparrows from the martin housing area. The perch also helps to attract the birds, as birds of all kinds, including martins, use them as a place to land and search for food.
Martin houses can be equipped with a perch made from a twig, bamboo or plastic rod, or a metal hook and bar. The perching material should be sturdy enough for the martins to land on it and of a thickness so that their feet don’t slip through.
It should also be long enough to provide a good footing for the birds. The perches should be placed approximately four inches below the entrance hole and should protrude out from the wall of the housing.
This will allow the martin to land and take off easily, as well as giving some protection from predators.
Do purple martin houses have to be up high?
Yes, purple martin houses should be kept up high. These birds tend to nest in colonies and they are highly social, so they prefer to nest close to each other. This can be accomplished by placing their houses above twenty feet in the air.
Ideally, they should be placed 30-40 feet or higher and should not be placed lower than fifteen feet. This is because predators like cats, owls, hawks, and snakes, may view the house as a potential meal and may try to reach it.
Additionally, the height allows them to have a good view of their environment which allows them to keep an eye out for predators.