Purple Martins are Back

When I first saw the headline on unionleader.com I thought it said, “purple martinis” and I was pretty jazzed but then I realized it’s a very special bird.

These birds rack up frequent flyer miles because they commute from Brazil to the North East of the United States and into Canada, according to the article, and that’s more than 7000 miles!

Looks like the first one of the season has been spotted, according to Union Leader.

Why the Purple Martins are so Special?

You may wonder why a non-descript-looking small bird is so important.  Well, they are beautiful but the most important thing they do for us is eating billions of insects.  That’s right, they eat BILLIONS of insects, according to the Union Leader.

If you go hiking and get stung by mosquitos, you should love the purple martin.  Sadly, they have lost nearly one-third of their population in the last 50 years per the news outlet.

Good Taste in Housing

Personally, if I were a bird, I would choose a little condo living like the purple martin.  Many New Hampshire residents have erected the wooden condos that the purple martin likes to live in.

Have you ever passed a birdhouse that looks rather large and had a ton of little openings?  That would be a martin housing development.

Joe Siegrist, President of the Purple Martin Conservation Association has stated in a news release that “Over the majority of the purple martins’ range, they are unable to nest naturally any longer.  Human -provided nest boxes are the only thing keeping the species alive east of the Rocky Mountains,” per reporting from unionleader.com.

If you put up housing for them, their colony will return to your special house every year.

If you are curious about martin housing, check out the link at www.purplemartin.org.  This might be a fun family project you can work on with the kids.



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