Its official: I'm a cricket flipping machine!!!!

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tonyg
Posts: 1520
Joined: Fri Feb 27, 2009 4:16 pm
Location: Olpe, KS
Martin Colony History: 22 year landlord, 14 at current residence..offering 9 racks and a homemade T-8 for 166 total cavities. 160 Pair in 2018 Racks consist of a Deluxe 12, AAA 16, Starburst 16, 2 K-18 Series, Super 24, 2 Gemini, Multi-purpose/two trio’s/4gourds and a T-8..Great hobby to be involved in..

Came home this morning to 14 sad and cold looking martins.(temp 36) Thawed 2 bags of crickets and went out for the first time to attempt my cricket flipping adventure. I had read where sometimes it takes quite a few flips to get them started, but on about the 20/25th flip, a male started the feeding frenzy. And it was an awesome sight to watch. Ended up flipping over 500 2/3 size crickets and added some scrambled egg to the mix. Words cannot begin to describe the feeling one gets to know that you may have saved your martins lives by supplemental feeding. So please don't give up, they will feed if they are hungry...
22 year landlord..9 Rack Systems for 2018 and my home built T-8 for a total of 166 cavities..160 pair in 2018 ..SUPER COLONY!!! Love You Bev... Fan of those St. Louis Cardinals!!!!!
Linda Reynolds
Posts: 1308
Joined: Tue Nov 11, 2003 8:33 pm
Location: Adamsville, TN

OH MY GOSH! That is FABULOUS news, Tony............I wish you much success and hope your flipping finger holds out. Lucky martins to be living at your place. Keep up the good work, and keep us informed. This weather *incident* has been pretty darned nasty, and lasted much too long.

Now that your martins know how to capture flipped offerings, you can be assure that you will be able to help them in the future. Much good luck is wished for you and all others that are flipping, scrambling, thawing, and offering food.
Ever-Grateful,
Linda
KathyF
Posts: 3519
Joined: Thu May 24, 2007 1:57 pm
Location: Missouri/Licking
Martin Colony History: Colony started - 2007 with one pair
As of 2018 - 84 cavities offered, max # of pairs hosted - 82.

Congratulations, Tony!!! I'm so happy for you - I know you were very worried about your martins.

So glad you were able to get them to go for it, so that you'll never have to worry again. Buy lots of plastic spoons! :lol: :lol:

Post some pictures, man!
"Sometimes", said Pooh, "the smallest things take up the most room in your heart."
2016 - 82 pair
2015 - 76 pair
2014 - 75 pair
2013 - 75 pair
2012-72 pair
http://kathyfreeze.blogspot.com
TerryG
Posts: 36
Joined: Tue Feb 08, 2011 3:30 pm
Location: Ohio/Pomeroy

Thats good stuff. I tried flipping for about 20 minutes and they would lunge forward but wouldn't leave the roost! Maybe not hungry enough yet.
Robbo
Posts: 623
Joined: Tue Jun 09, 2009 2:53 pm
Location: Leduc, Alberta, Canada.

What kind of flipper is good?
2009. 98 eggs, 66 hatch, 61 fledged.
2010. 114 eggs, 89 hatch,70 fledged.
2011. 96 eggs. 80 hatch,68 fledged.Heavy Merlin preditation.
2012. 89 eggs. 56 hatch, good fledge. Guards installed. Merlin not sighted at houses.
2013. First Egg May 24, first Baby June 13.
2014. successful.
2015. successful.
2016. Martin's population decline, suspect new housing in the neighborhood. Merlin eating well also!
2017.Population explosion :grin: . first egg May 25 in a BO-11
2018. Population stable.
dcartwright
Posts: 259
Joined: Tue Nov 11, 2003 2:52 pm
Location: Winchester, Ky.

I first got my 6, now 11 PMs to start taking crickets a few days ago. Feeding them twice a day. Now when I walk out of the house, several leave the gourd rack flying low toward me then turn and back to the rack they go singing excitedly. They are hungry and happy to see me again. They know food will soon be coming their way. ITS GREAT!! :)

This is the 5th day of cold weather here with today being the worst. High today maybe 40 with a light rain all day. Come back warm weather, PLEASE!
Linda Reynolds
Posts: 1308
Joined: Tue Nov 11, 2003 8:33 pm
Location: Adamsville, TN

Robbo, in the beginning when you are first conditioning your martins, I found a simple plastic picnic spoon worked the best. I achieved good loft, and the martins quickly accepted the offerings.

At first, you do not want to waste a lot of crickets, so using a larger spoon might prove to be wasteful. In the beginning, smaller portions work well.

When one or two martins accept the offerings, you might want to put more food aloft during each *fling*. Some folks suggest plastic handled spoons from WalMart, and others still use the typical plastic picnic spoon. Yet, others recommend long handled spoons from Dairy Queen.

There are many suggestions posted on previous posts, and all are good ideas shared by experienced supplemental feeders. You will eventually find what works best for you in time..........
Ever-Grateful,
Linda
tonyg
Posts: 1520
Joined: Fri Feb 27, 2009 4:16 pm
Location: Olpe, KS
Martin Colony History: 22 year landlord, 14 at current residence..offering 9 racks and a homemade T-8 for 166 total cavities. 160 Pair in 2018 Racks consist of a Deluxe 12, AAA 16, Starburst 16, 2 K-18 Series, Super 24, 2 Gemini, Multi-purpose/two trio’s/4gourds and a T-8..Great hobby to be involved in..

Robbo, Linda is right. I started with a long handle one from dairy queen and when it broke I went to a small white one..worked just as well...good luck
22 year landlord..9 Rack Systems for 2018 and my home built T-8 for a total of 166 cavities..160 pair in 2018 ..SUPER COLONY!!! Love You Bev... Fan of those St. Louis Cardinals!!!!!
TerryG
Posts: 36
Joined: Tue Feb 08, 2011 3:30 pm
Location: Ohio/Pomeroy

I used a spatula, you don't have to worry about it breaking and has a long handle. Maybe today is the day they accept eggs?
John Miller
Posts: 4774
Joined: Mon Mar 22, 2004 9:11 pm
Location: St. Louis, MO

Tony

I hope you will try putting some crickets in compartments too. Those martins that ignore feeder trays, or even flipped crickets, generally will eat when they have to walk over crickets or have them nearly right under their beaks. If one keeps half or more of their housing closed, it's feasible to spoon 20 crickets into a comparment, or gourd tunnel, fairly quickly, allowing one or two martins to sit down to a feast at each table.

John Barrow's idea of flipping crickets toward a house roof I think also makes "flipping" more effective -- those martins that get into the frenzy learn to follow others and alight on the roof to pick up the crickets. Of course one may need gutter guards!

John Miller
~Ray~Gingerich
Posts: 2122
Joined: Mon Jan 05, 2004 10:24 pm
Location: Delaware/Dover

The first time I flipped crickets several birds went after them on the 3rd or 4th flip, It was like they were experts and had done this before, some fly off the house when I have a cricket in firing position to make the first catch. It's like watching a martin baseball team.
~Ray~ Gingerich
1999 1pair, 2006 2 pair, 2008 2 pair,
2009 23 pair, 2010 39 pair, 2011 67 pair,
2012 115 pair, 2013 160 pair,
2014 152 pair, 2015 174 pair, 2016 178 pair
2017 187 pair, 2018 200 pair, 2019 171pair
2020 233 pair
Fredmyyster
Posts: 280
Joined: Mon Mar 24, 2008 12:30 pm
Location: Tennessee/ Nashville

That is so cool ! 36 degrees? brrrr
Empty POOLS are a Delight ! !
Laverne
Posts: 2216
Joined: Thu Jan 08, 2004 1:58 pm
Location: TX/Alvin
Martin Colony History: Erected 1st house in 1997. Birds were checking it out before Mike got down from the ladder. Six cavities had a little colony 1st year. Grown to 88 cavities all gourds with near 100% occupancy. Most important factor for success is rain = bugs.

TerryG wrote:Thats good stuff. I tried flipping for about 20 minutes and they would lunge forward but wouldn't leave the roost! Maybe not hungry enough yet.
Did you get them to feed? When I first read this post I thought maybe you need to try getting the crickets a little higher... or a "lot" higher. If they are actually lunging forward then they must be thinking about it real hard. Tempt them a little more intensely and I just know they'll make the leap.

Good luck!
Sincerely,
Laverne
eyeamtheman
Posts: 633
Joined: Tue Nov 11, 2003 3:21 pm
Location: Quitman, La
Martin Colony History: Super colony

Congrats Tony. And Terry G.....if they're squatting or lunging at whatyou flip you're REAL close to success. Keep trying!!
Johnny
Dawn~KS
Posts: 95
Joined: Thu May 31, 2007 2:24 pm
Location: Kansas

Congrats, Tony...........you have a wonderful tool to use now, they will not forget!! Feels great doesn't it? :)
Ed Pace
Posts: 669
Joined: Tue Feb 08, 2011 3:31 pm
Location: NY/Jamestown

Good going Tony and dcartwright,this weather is bad news,but the real Good news is you are saving your martins. I hope everybuddy will do the same, Ed.
D. Doll MN
Posts: 108
Joined: Sun May 08, 2005 11:05 am
Location: ST CLOUD MN
Martin Colony History: Formally from Willmar MN moved in 2015 and started new colony in 2019 i had 27 pair.

There are a couple of It is great to get your martins trained to accept crickets and or scrambled eggs. And after they have been trained usually there are some that will remember it year after year in the future if it is needed. But there are some draw backs to flinging crickets be very careful if you have hawks in the area because they will take big advantage of the distraction. There has been times in past years when I just threw them up with my hands because they were flying about four feet away from my face waiting for the next bunch of crickets to hit the air. So it can be a lot of fun but just be careful, also mine eat scrambled eggs from the platform feeder know, when they needed it. But I do keep extra crickets on hand to train everyone else’s martins that show up at my place during bad weather.
Dick Doll
Chriscreole
Posts: 781
Joined: Tue Aug 17, 2010 9:31 am
Location: Texas, Hutto

If Martins are flying catching their own, and you start flipping too, will they stop catching their own bugs and be strickly dependant on their landlords to feed them? I was going to do some flippin even tho mine are doing fine, just to get them use to me, but was afraid they would stop getting their own.
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PMCA Member since 2010
Super System 24, All Troyer W/Conley 2 entrances.
Dawn~KS
Posts: 95
Joined: Thu May 31, 2007 2:24 pm
Location: Kansas

I have flipped food for my martins over the last 4 years during inclement weather and when the weather is good they go off to feed. I just don't see how a little flipping can take away their natural instinct.
KathyF
Posts: 3519
Joined: Thu May 24, 2007 1:57 pm
Location: Missouri/Licking
Martin Colony History: Colony started - 2007 with one pair
As of 2018 - 84 cavities offered, max # of pairs hosted - 82.

Chriscreole wrote:If Martins are flying catching their own, and you start flipping too, will they stop catching their own bugs and be strickly dependant on their landlords to feed them? I was going to do some flippin even tho mine are doing fine, just to get them use to me, but was afraid they would stop getting their own.
Gosh, I sure hope not....I'll be in big trouble and broke by the end of this season!!! :lol: :lol: :lol: j
"Sometimes", said Pooh, "the smallest things take up the most room in your heart."
2016 - 82 pair
2015 - 76 pair
2014 - 75 pair
2013 - 75 pair
2012-72 pair
http://kathyfreeze.blogspot.com
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