How to Identify your Purple Martin’s

How to Identify your Purple Martin's

  • Appearing as an ordinary black or gray bird when light hits a full grown adult male is obvious how they get their name. The black areas become brilliant deep purple in color.
  • It take a male 3 years to reach adulthood and acquire their plumage. Male martins molt in to their purple plumage during their second Wintering season in Brazil.
  • Until a male martins second season molt they are often confused to be a mature female. Males seem to have darker heads than their female counterparts.
  • Sub adult male martin have a darker head & back and lighter under parts. Gray on the forehead and often have a few dark feathers showing on the breast.   

  • Females tend to have more purple on their crown and nape, ( shoulders), back and rump than young females.
  • Molt starts in late summer and stops during migration then resumes at winter roost where plumage change occurs.

Adult Male

Adult Female

Sub Adult Female

Sub Adult Male

Purple Martin
The Purple Martin is a beloved bird species that can be seen throughout North America. They are a wonderful addition to any backyard or outdoor space, and they can provide hours of entertainment. To ensure that they thrive in your area, it is important to provide the best possible feeding and housing options for your Purple Martins. Provide them with plenty of large bugs such as wasps, beetles, and flies in order to supply their main source of nutrition. Additionally, make sure to place their housing in an open area so they have easy access and visibility from predators. Finally, keep their home clean by regularly removing old nesting material and replacing it with fresh grasses or straws. With these tips, you will be able to enjoy the presence of beautiful Purple Martins for many years!

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