Smith 5th Grade Blog 2012

Purple Martin Week 10 update

Posted on: May 9, 2012

We have an very healthy Purple Martin community, but we also experienced a slight disaster this week. This is why I have not been posting for the month of May. Our large house crashed as we were raising it after a nest check. A cable of only 4 years old had rust and unraveled. The other cable on the small house has no rust. For many reasons, which I will spare all readers, we had to remove the 37 babies and bring them to a wildlife rehab facility. We are currently trying to find homes for the rehab babies in established nests. However, the good news is that we have 62 healthy babies in the other houses and 3 nests with 12 eggs.

May 9th update: On May 10th 10 Purple Martin babies will return to established nests at Smith. All of the younger birds have found a good home in Houston. There are several that were too old and will be released soon. We wish those birds lots of luck! That leaves us with 72 babies at Smith with 3 nests and 12 eggs. No pecked eggs or dead birds. I am really hoping we can get through the next couple of weeks without the record high April temperatures.

May 10th update: Today the healthy 10 Purple Martins were returned to our school and placed in the appropriate gourds and small house rooms. Unfortunately, I found another problem. Red ants had made a trail up and down the wooden post. I used vaseline and chalk around the post and cleaned as many on the post that I could find. There was no evidence of them around the babies. Then I stayed until 7:00 PM to make sure that there were adults still alive and willing to feed our new guests.

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