Purple martins are migratory birds. They avoid the cold by going to South America, and every year, beginning in January, they return to nesting grounds in North America to reproduce and lay eggs.
Austin is in a general area that sees early arrivals of purple martins in Texas. While most of the south and east part of the state start to see arrivals around Feb. 1, Austin can see the first birds arrive as early as mid-January.
Unlike salmon and some other migratory creatures, purple martins are not permanently tied to a particular nesting place. They can choose another if their established nest is found unsuitable upon their return.
Dependence on Man
Purple martins of the type that migrate into areas east of the Rocky Mountains, including those who come to the Austin area, are almost entirely dependent on man-made structures to provide nesting areas.
One of the main reasons a purple martin couple might have to relocate is because their existing nest is occupied. Starlings and sparrows sometimes reach the area before they do and take their nesting areas.
Keeping bird houses for purple martins has become popular, with both property owners and even townships putting them up.
Article Written By Edwin Thomas
Edwin Thomas has been writing since 1997. His work has appeared in various online publications, including The Black Table, Proboxing-Fans and others. A travel blogger, editor and writer, Thomas has traveled from Argentina to Vietnam in pursuit of stories. He holds a Master of Arts in international affairs from American University.