Tag Archives: purple martins

Photo Challenge #277

“06880” readers know their onions.

Also, their blue martins.

Last week’s Photo Challenge showed an odd, futuristic assortment of round somethings, on an aluminum pole. I had no idea what or where it was, when photographer Amy Schneider sent it to me. (Click here for the photo.)

But Ann Allard, Nancy McKeever, Wendy Cusick, Chip Stephens, William Weiss, Tina Green, Cindy Zuckerbrod, Jalna Jaeger, Leigh Gage, Joe Clark and Bruce Salvo all knew: a home for migrating purple martins, at Sherwood Island State Park.

Specifically, it’s on the south side of the Nature Center, which is on the east beach of the park.

More specifically, Tina adds these details:

They are purple martin gourds, of which I am the martin landlord.

I started the colony in 2013 at the park when Phil Donahue donated 24 of his gourds to Sherwood Island after selling his Beachside Avenue property, where he maintained 48 gourds in his colony.

The martins began arriving last week. Soon at least 24 pairs will be back and nesting. The gourds are numbered, as I record how many eggs are laid, hatched, and fledged from each nest.

DEEP comes to band our juvenile birds every year in early July. By early August they will leave and migrate to Brazil for the winter.

Who knew? As usual, plenty of “06880” readers.

But do you know where this week’s Photo Challenge was taken?

It shows a pair of ospreys. One has a fish under its talons. If you recognize where 2 of Westport’s favorite raptors were hanging out, click “Comments” below.

(Photo/Mark LaClair)