Tuesday, September 22, 2015

Sunday, August 2, 2015

Choosing a Martin House

Thinking about getting a purple martin bird house?  Historically, martins used cavities in trees to nest but over time they’ve adapted to man-made housing almost exclusively so it’s up to us to ensure they have a safe place to nest.  This article will briefly discuss the two different types of martin houses available. 

Martins are named quite obviously for their body color.  They’re the largest in the swallow family and have the most incredible migration pattern flying all the way to Brazil for the winter before returning to the US in early spring and late winter. 

Types of Martin Bird Houses

There are two primary styles of houses those being “gourds” and the “conventional” (aluminum or wood) multi-level apartment looking units.  There is some debate as to whether Purple Martin Gourds are beneficial in attracting martins and to reproductive success but in our experience the success is relatively the same if conditions such as location, food and water supply and safety are the same.  A particular advantage to hanging gourds is that they swing freely in the wind, which seems to have no effect on the martins but will certainly discourage those European starlings and house sparrows from trying to take over.  Many of our martin gourds come with a rack and pole system while others can be hung below a conventional house or simply on a secure line.  It’s best to have a system you can easily raise and lower in order to do routine nest checks and other maintenance.

The other style of housing is conventional apartment looking units with multiple levels and shared porch areas.  Research has proven that white is the color of choice and materials can be light-weight aluminum or wood.  Wood is naturally heavier and thus better insulated to help retain heat in cool conditions and stay cooler in hot conditions.  Aluminum is also quite good at dissipating heat and most of our aluminum martin houses have reflective roofs and excellent ventilation to keep the nest cool. 

Please stop over to the store and contact directly for your Purple Martin Bird House.

Purple Martin Bird House

Thursday, July 23, 2015

Barn Owl Nest Boxes

As we continue to search for ways to lighten our footprint on earth one method that has shown tremendous success is the use of natural predators such as the barn owl to assist farmers with rodent control.  Mice and gophers and other rodents not only carry disease but they can devastate farming crops.  Our new Barn Owl Nest Box has been a huge hit with the farmers as a pair of barn owls can do significant damage to rodent populations in a totally clean and natural way.  It really has been great news for farmers and the public at large.  Our barn owl nest box costs less than  $200 delivered to your door and if you presume one box per 5-10 acres you're talking about a minimal investment that is not only natural but permanent.

Wild Bird Store Online is aware of several conservationists who are attempting to boost the barn owl population in certain areas. Our manufacturers produces sturdy barn owl boxes that are perfect nesting sites for the nocturnal birds.  These affordable molded-plastic barn owl boxes are estimated to last for 30 years or so depending on conditions.  The plastic boxes offer several advantages over wood including being lightweight, durable and easy to installation.

Used widely in the orchards and vineyards of California, our nesting boxes have proved to be a valuable asset in integrated pest management, sustainable agriculture and organic farming. Farmers around the world using the barn owl boxes are helping the conservation of these beautiful birds and at the same time, reducing the amount of poisons entering the ecosystem. Our nest box was designed by a leading barn owl researcher and they are the first lightweight, durable plastic nest boxes designed exclusively for barn owls.

Our nesting box features a 5.5" entrance hole, landing ledge, rain guard, acrylic viewing window and removable front for easy cleaning. The acrylic viewing windows allow for the viewing of eggs and chicks. The barn owl boxes will never rot and can be placed on posts, in barns, or trees. Actually there are two versions of the box. One is designed to mount on a pole in open spaces and the other is designed to mount in the wall of a barn. The barn owl boxes come complete with all the mounting hardware and instruction brochures. The Pole Model comes with galvanized-metal mounting-brackets that attach easily to the top of a wooden 4 x 4, 6 x 6, or to the flanges on metal poles. To ensure that the barn owl boxes maintain the correct temperature, special reflective pigments and efficient venting systems are used. Each of the barn owl boxes are actually two boxes in one. The outer box is of highly reflective white plastic and the inner box is dark brown plastic which ensures that the birds are in the dark.

Learn more about the Pole mounted barn owl nest box and the Barn Mount nest box here.