Long-distance migrant. Most Purple Martins that breed in eastern North American probably migrate across the Gulf of Mexico. They form huge roosts (of several hundred thousand birds) in late summer along the Gulf Coast from Texas to Florida. Others may fly over Mexico and through Central America. Purple Martins are probably leisurely migrants that fly only during the day and forage as they go. Nonetheless, they are one of the earliest South American migrants to arrive in the spring, reaching Florida as early as mid-January and New England in mid-April.