Baja St. Martin

I received a phone call the other day from a gentleman from Breaux Bridge who had read one of my Baja columns in which I reported that my purple martins had returned.

He said his had not despite having several bird houses cleaned and ready. I shared this information with a friend as we stood in the post office. A local man overheard and said no purple martins had shown up at his bird house either. I have yet to find out why the birds are in some places and not others, but if anyone knows please tell me.

My two bird houses are on the dock over the water and I know martins like being over water. I think it might have something to do with their food supply. I had thought maybe the parent birds felt teaching their children to fly over water was safer than over land, but I’m not sure that’s true. I’ve rescued baby birds from the mouths of water snakes. And from the mouths of cats and dogs in the yard.

Years ago, I put my first purple martin house on a pole at the top corner of a shed in the yard and the martins flew around but wouldn’t nest in it. So I moved the whole thing to the corner of my house roof which was at that time a houseboat. The birds moved right in but a late cold snap occurred and the smoke from our wood stove blew straight into the bird house. I swear I could hear them coughing for a day or two, but they stayed right there. So I know the birds will put up with a lot if necessary.

The weather lately has been stupendous. The Belle River landing has a pretty good supply of traffic each day, but I’ve not heard of anyone catching much crawfish. None of the local buying stands seem to be in business. I hear a rumor now and then of someone catching two or three sacks, making big bucks. And practically all you see are Go-Devils or Pro-drive motors.

Update: A young Belle River man caught eight sacks of nice crawfish, so the tale goes. No mention of price but I hear it’s still over $2 a pound. Also heard that a Bayou Pigeon fisherman got eight sacks, too. About $100 a sack. Not a bad day.

I listened to all of President Obama’s speech last month and felt comforted by his confidence. But I know what he says and what he can do may not be the same. (I also began to wish that Nancy Pelosi would just sit down and stay that way.) What really ‘ticks’ me off is the bipartisan wrangling going on. The whole economy is on the verge of disaster and these politicians (and etc.) still seem to be more concerned with their own images than what might be best for us lowly citizens! And it sure doesn’t sound like GM and Chrysler have made much good use of the billions they have already received. Now they want more?

Linda Cooke

The Teche News’ Lower St. Martin correspondent, Linda Cooke, can be contacted via e-mail at

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