- Introduction

- Housing

- Care

- Attracting
  Purple Martins

- Resources


Starting your initial purple martin colony can be interesting and challenging. Keep these thoughts in mind when locating the martin house:

1. Clear air -
Houses need at least 40 feet of clear air space to provide easy access to the nest site. Housing placed too close to trees or wires will be ignored.

2. Human activity -
Martins seem to adapt better when the martin house is placed close to human activity. You can place the martin house within 40-100 feet of your house.


3. Open for business -
Houses opened too early attract competing species and those opened too late will find that the martins have already located nesting sites for the year. Visit the HOUSING page for more information on when to open your house each season.

4. White houses -
Martins seem to be most attracted to white houses, which provide the best cooling on hot summer days. Make sure your house is white (colored trim is OK).

5. Combos -
Sometimes adding a few gourds below a martin "apartment" will help attract birds the first year.

6. The Dawn Song -
After mating and nesting has commenced, adult male martins will fly above the colony early in the morning and sing the "dawn song." The song proclaims the presence of a successful colony and the males hope to attract sub-adult females to the area.

Perspective martin landlords can play a tape of the martin dawn song in late spring to enhance the chance of establishing the initial colony.

A complete selection of purple martin houses and accessories, including the dawn song tape, is available in the Birdzilla Purple Martin Shop.

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