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It's for the birdies at Stonington golf course

Stonington — Once a week, golf course superintendent Vin Sylvester counts the purple martin chicks and eggs in the nesting gourds at the Pequot Golf Club.

After the birds have laid most of their eggs, Sylvester counts the chicks and eggs to keep track of how many are hatching and to make sure the young birds are healthy. His wife, Hermione, records the counts in a notebook. The club has two poles with nesting gourds that currently have 23 nesting pairs, 95 chicks and 13 eggs.

Purple martins are a songbird in the swallow family and are native to the eastern United States, where they breed, though they migrate to Central America in winter. They nest in colonies almost exclusively in human-supplied housing, according to the Purple Martin Conservation Association.

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