Looking For The Perfect Purple Martin Birdhouse
"The Purple Martin; you've probably heard of them! I'm sure you have seen their homes in many yards. Maybe as a child your family had one or your neighbor down the street, but it is always the largest and probably the tallest birdhouses with many residents.
The Purple Martin is part of the swallow family of North America. The Martin measures 7 - 8"" and weighs 45 - 60 grams. The only difference between the male and female Martin is the female is not as glossy and has a lighter under belly.
Now that you know a little about the Purple Martin let's talk nesting preferences and the Purple Martin Birdhouse. The Purple Martin breeds near and around humans. They actually like to see human activity, as they feel human activity will keep predators away that's why it is important to pick a spot within about 30 - 60 feet from your home for the Martin Birdhouse. Air space is vital to the flight path of the Purple Martin. There should be no trees taller than your selected Martin Birdhouse within 60 feet. The home should be 10 to 20 feet from the ground.
Martins are colonial breeders and will share a single large birdhouse as long as there are multiple compartments to it, otherwise called bird condos. A good Martin Birdhouse will have a minimum of 4 large rooms; 6 or more inches on all sides with a 2 ??"" entrance hole that is about an 1 ??"" above the floor.
Most Purple Martin Birdhouses are painted white, they reflect the heat of the sun best and white highlights the darkness of the entrance holes best. So for many reasons, the Purple Martin likes a white painted birdhouse. However, a wooden birdhouse can sometimes be over 30 lbs. making maintenance somewhat difficult. These will not be as easily mounted to a tilt type or telescoping pole as the smaller or light-weight aluminum houses. You can use a shorter fixed pole (10 to 12 feet) and inspect and maintain it from a ladder.
So why do people want to attract Purple Martins? They are beautiful and delightful. They literally fill the summer air singing their hearts out and eating a very large quantity of insects that would otherwise be bothering us. They are friendly in that they enjoy the company of humans and expect to see us around their nesting sites. We will get enjoyment in the evening by watching their aerial acrobatics, which is quite soothing.
Okay, now that you have more factual information on the likes and dislikes of the Purple Martin it is time to get your Martin Birdhouse up and running. Knowledge is King so please read as much as you can to give yourself that confident feeling when you see the first of many Martins in your yard. As we have always said, safety is a key factor in having the birds return season after season. So have fun and please be sure to check out our website at to see the many homes and birdhouse kits we offer."