1988 - Volume #12, Issue #4, Page #18[ Sample Stories From This Issue | List of All Stories In This Issue | Print this story | Read this issue]
Purple martin castles"My purple martin houses are lightweight, durable, easy to maintain and won't rot or rust," says Gary Fiscus, Kerrville, Tex., who's manufacturing martin "castle" bird houses made from plastic and masonite.
Fiscus offers 10 different models, including more conventionally designed houses with flat sloping roofs. The structures range in size from 8 to 24 units.
The "castles" consist of several columns of 6-in. dia. thin-wall plastic tubes arranged in various configurations and heights. The tubes are sprayed with a white, high gloss, automotive acrylic enamel finish. Pop riveted to the tops of the tubes are conical tower roofs, made from high density poly-ethylene. The roofs sport tiny colored plastic flags.
The floors for each unit, which also serve as outside perches for the birds, are made of double-walled, fluted plastic which provides ventilation for the houses. As heat rises from the ground, it goes through the fluted floor openings, is trapped between the double walls, and is pushed out the flutes in the porch area. The floors slip out like drawers for easy cleaning and for off-season storage. "Removing the floors allows nesting material from the previous nesting season to fall out the bottom and prevents other birds from nesting in the houses during the off-season," notes Fiscus, adding, "These houses are extremely light and easy to handle. Even the biggest 24-unit castle weighs only 28 lbs. One person can easily move it up or down the pole." The roofs and floors are available in 5 different colors: blue, gray, red, yellow and green. Twenty foot telescoping poles put the "castles" high in the sky. Fiscus recommends anchoring the poles with an 18-in. footing.
The houses range in price from $54.95 for an 8-unit house to $179.95 for a 24-unit "castle".
For more information, contact: FARM SHOW Followup, Feathers Friend, 1915 Junction Highway, Kerrville, Texas 78028 (ph 512 895-5969).
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