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Old 04-11-2014, 11:37 AM   #31
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He throws the egg in the air and they catch it. They see his truck pull up in the driveway and they fly around waiting for their egg. He feeds them on days when the weather is bad and there are no insects flying.
Wow, this is quite amazing! I don't have the time or patience to do this!
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Old 04-11-2014, 11:40 AM   #32
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I wish there was someone around me who had a colony...and could perhaps give me some pointers. I might try for a colony myself if I thought it was likely and had someone to guide me. At the same time, I have bluebirds and don't know if the purple martins would be too much competition.

I also want to attract barn swallows...but it is my understanding that they stay in the same colony and don't start new ones unless the structure is gone or gets too overcrowded...so they may just be a dream for me.
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We have tree swallows and bluebirds nesting right near the purple martin colony at Forsythe Refuge. The only competition is between the bluebirds and the tree swallows. They leave the martins alone and the martins leave them alone. Or are you worried about competition for food?
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Old 04-12-2014, 09:01 AM   #33
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Good to know they get along fine...not ready to splurge on a house like that yet...but, maybe someday...especially after I finish my pond.



I don't remember where I read that they usually nest in the same place each year, and it is hard to attract them to a new space. Glad to hear that it doesn't sound like as much of an issue as I thought.

I know I've seen a solitary nest outside a friends garage once.

I added wooden ledges outside our barn/garage under the eaves. Several years later, and nothing has nested on them yet. I wonder if I should put more up on the other sides (not just the one facing the house).
I'm no Barn Swallow expert, but everywhere that I have seen their nests, they get little, or no, direct light. I have read that an eastern exposure is best for early morning warming by the sun.

Bird nesting boxes/sites remind me of trying to find a spot that a plant likes. On my acre, Cardinal Flower will only grow in one small spot, but does great there. Some Hydrangeas are in their third spot. I have decided to getting three of anything that I want and spreading them out, to see where they want to be.

I am putting up a ledge for Barn Swallows today. It's a project that I have put off for a few years. It's worth a try.
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Old 04-13-2014, 07:47 AM   #34
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That is so true about plants fish. I moved my cardinal flower plant when it wasn't doing anything and it bloomed. I moved my hydrangea several times and now it is very happy. I have the perfect spot for barn swallows. There are plenty of ledges in my horse shelter roof and there is mud around the shelter. They tried to nest in there one time in 15 years and the starlings chased them out. So far I have succeeded in getting rid of the starlings this year. They will not be nesting there anymore one way or the other. We always had barn swallows flying around us when we mow. Myself and others in the area have noticed that decrease. They have fewer places to nest these days. We had a barn swallow that raised young in the entrance to our barn years ago. It was right above where be tied our horses to get them ready to ride. Luckily everyone was ok with the birds there. We just had to be quick about getting the horse ready to avoid getting bird poop on the horse as the mom flew in and out. She was not discouraged with us being there.
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Last edited by EllenW; 04-13-2014 at 07:49 AM. Reason: spelling
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Old 04-14-2014, 05:42 PM   #35
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Not a one so far but I see they've been sighted less than a half hour away. Anytime now.
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Old 04-14-2014, 09:08 PM   #36
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I'm no Barn Swallow expert, but everywhere that I have seen their nests, they get little, or no, direct light. I have read that an eastern exposure is best for early morning warming by the sun.

Bird nesting boxes/sites remind me of trying to find a spot that a plant likes. On my acre, Cardinal Flower will only grow in one small spot, but does great there. Some Hydrangeas are in their third spot. I have decided to getting three of anything that I want and spreading them out, to see where they want to be.

I am putting up a ledge for Barn Swallows today. It's a project that I have put off for a few years. It's worth a try.
I did place the shelves/ledges on the east-facing side. I think I need to put them up even higher. I think they are six inches from the eaves.

Good idea about getting three of everything, putting them in various spots, and moving the other two to where they'll grow best.

I'm glad you have a spot that the cardinal flower has a spot where it does well. I'd hate for you to not be able to grow it at all.
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Old 04-14-2014, 09:10 PM   #37
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Dap if the bluebirds boxes have the correct size hole starlings can't get in them just house sparrows.
Right. Mine have the proper sized hole. Luckily, no house sparrows yet...I hope I never get any! I have, unfortunately had a couple starlings show up at times.
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Old 04-14-2014, 09:13 PM   #38
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Ellen, I hope you get more barn swallows nesting.

How did you get rid of the European starlings?
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Old 04-15-2014, 08:44 AM   #39
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I had a lot of chicken wire. I cut large pieces of it and scrunched it then put it in areas they like to nest. It was not easy doing this up on a ladder. I had no idea if it would work. Normally they would have young by now. No starlings are nesting at all. I am so thrilled. I have seen a couple starlings on my property but they are not sticking around. Now if I could just get rid of the house sparrows. I am glad to hear that others don't have them. They are a problem for a lot of people in this area. My friend had a lot of them in her barn. She tried hanging cd's in there, using sharp matting on ledges, putting up netting to block them. I will have to ask her if she got rid of them.
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Old 06-07-2014, 07:30 PM   #40
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We are having no problem attracting Barn Swallows this year. We've got two pair on the house. Two years ago, a pair nested on the porch, but last year were not interested. One couple is above the front door and another is above a bedroom window. We learned they will get up as early as 3:30 am to start their chattering.

We used to collect our duck's feathers to keep them from the HOSP, so we have a good sized bag of them. I will put little piles around the house and watch the Barn Swallows go after them. Such a joy to watch!
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babies, bird, bird house, birds, box, chicks, houses, housing, martin homes, martin houses, martins, nest, nesting box, nesting material, nests, protection, purple, purple martin, purple martins

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