Martin House

Purple Martin Riviera Project
at The Fairhope Pier

The largest of the swallow family, Purple Martins pass through the Gulf Coast area twice a year on their great migratory adventure, a flight for some that can be as long as 8,500 miles.
Martin Houses
Martin Houses
Wintering in South America, they begin their journey northward right around the first of the year. They usually arrive on the Eastern Shore from late January or early February. In addition to their beautiful song and graceful flight, they also help humans.
Because swallows consume thousands of tons of flying insects per year, they help increase agricultural yields, and greatly reduce the amounts of harmful pesticides needed for insect control. Purple Martins once relied on natural tree cavities, but now are raised in man made housing.
Martin Houses
Fairhope Firetruck
The City of Fairhope began erecting Purple Martin apartments near the Fairhope Pier in February 2001.
Nesting occurs from late March through early July. After the young have fledged, the martins leave the colony to start assembling as larger flocks.
Fairhope Pier
The southward migration begins by the end of August, and virtually all Purple Martins leave the Gulf Coast by mid-September.

Purple Martin Project Credits: Mobile Bay Audubon Society, Garland Sims and other citizen volunteers.


Mobile Bay Area Earth Day
April 21, 2002

Sanctuary Sign

Information on the Bird Sanctuary and the Alabama Coastal Birding Trail is made available to the public at the Fairhope Pier.

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