A solution to those of us who have concluded that large natural horizontal gourds with their deep , dark cavities would be the best way to attract martins to our unestablished sites, but who want SREH s, because of serious competition from starlings. I used a 3 ½" long piece of schedule 40 PVC pipe, which has an exact inside diameter of 3", and I used 3/16" birch plywood for the cling plate. Some type of plastic would probably work fine.
This is an untested idea, which needs experimenting with, and which probably could be improved upon. It could be made with or without a cling plate, or with exterior and interior porches. Perhaps the natural surface of the interior neck is the answer to the trouble reported with exiting the slick plastic Troyer gourds.
|Figure 1 - Tap pipe tightly over gourd stem, and mark gourd with pen.|
|Figure 2 - Trim off excess, starting 1/2" forward of line, angling downward.|
|Figure 3 - View of entrance, interior will be painted black. Note that cling plate is fastened with two brads, as well as being glued to PVC. Inside diameter of gourd stem drilled out to over 2".|
4 - finished gourd. Note pipe is fastened on with a tab with screws
on the top, one more screw at the bottom, then caulked with white
silicone. Entrance interior is spray painted black. Porches could be
added if desired.