Efficient snappers-up of mosquitos and other undesirable insects during their summer nesting season, for many people, Purple Martins are an integral part of their backyards in summer. Arriving in early spring from their overwintering homes in South America, these strong flying birds, the males of which are a deep iridescent violet, are very social nesters. They will pile into one house with many nesting rooms in it, or an array of hollow gourds.Purple Martins, with their happy chattering sounds, have been favorites of humans for thousands of years. They naturally nest in cavities that have been excavated by woodpeckers, but Native Americans liked having these birds around and offered hollowed out gourds for them to nest in. With the loss of nesting sites in the wild, these birds have settled into a mutually beneficial relationship with humans who welcome them with much-needed homes to raise their chicks. Late in the summer, look for masses of martins and their offspring on wires as they prepare for the long flight south.