First Starling of 2015

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Don Strickland
Posts: 430
Joined: Fri Mar 12, 2010 4:38 pm
Location: Oklahoma/Shady Point

Trapped my first Starling yesterday. First catch since November.
Don
Chuck4
Posts: 861
Joined: Mon May 16, 2011 10:05 am
Location: North MS
Martin Colony History: I started trying to attract Purple Martins in 2011. I got my first breeding pair in 2013.

2013-1 pair, 2014-4 pair, 2015-8 pair, 2016-12 pair 60 babies :-).

Good job! I have trapped about 20 HOSP so far. I'm taking a short break due to the cold weather, but plan to start back up in a couple of weeks. I have caught mostly males. :)
PMCA Member
_____
DornCounty
Posts: 2172
Joined: Tue Feb 14, 2012 3:58 pm
Location: Rural SE Kansas
Martin Colony History: .
.
Trio-Jedi

heard the familiar.. breeding scratch call of the HOuse Sparrow a few days ago. Yuck!
2017 - Home & Public Colonies - 300 Cavities
Louise Chambers
Site Admin
Posts: 6208
Joined: Tue Nov 04, 2003 1:07 pm
Location: Corpus Christi, TX

I think it's helpful to start trapping at least a few weeks before martins are expected back, maybe a month before. Bait traps for house sparrows, at least. Since we're in the city, we have oodles of them, but it's oodles minus a dozen or so as of today.
Dan G
Posts: 401
Joined: Thu Jun 12, 2014 7:52 pm
Location: PA/Bellefonte
Martin Colony History: Trying since 2014. Visitors, but no nests. Several colonies with in 6 mile radius.
2020- An SY male built a nest but could not attract a mate.

I recently convinced my wife that we need to eliminate some starling and just purchased a 10 foot piece of 4 inch PVC pipe and plan to make a trap soon. When we had a few warmer days a week or 2 ago, i noticed lots of starlings checking things out. Have seen some pictures of the house on top of the pvc and a small cage at the bottom.
Bellefonte PA
2014, 1st year-a few lookers, no nests
2015, 'Spot' SY male, here every day from 5-28 to 6-23
2016 added a perch wire between house and gourd rack
offering 22 cavities, T-14 plus 8 gourds
2016, multiple visitors from 6-20 on. Almost daily
2017- Lots of visitors late in season.
2018- Adding another T-14. Few visitors
2019- Hopeful but stopped holding my breath
2020-SY male built a nest.
tim414
Posts: 247
Joined: Wed Nov 05, 2014 10:52 am
Location: NorthTX/Pottsboro/Lake Texoma

I've not seen any starling around my location. However, in the bigger towns in my area, their really getting populated. I noticed a flock of starling at Starbucks last week. Dam things were even going into round drain pipes, I suppose scouting for a home.

They hang out with crackles (sp?). Go around the major intersections where they roost in this area, and the starlings are mixed in with them.

That is one bird I can pick out from a crowd now.....(starlings).

I'm still getting the HOSP confused with the native sparrows though. We have some natives; they are very close in color/marking.
DornCounty
Posts: 2172
Joined: Tue Feb 14, 2012 3:58 pm
Location: Rural SE Kansas
Martin Colony History: .
.
Trio-Jedi

Dan G - I used this design and it works great... http://www.purplemartin.org/forumarchiv ... wpage4.htm
2017 - Home & Public Colonies - 300 Cavities
MamaBruff
Posts: 1466
Joined: Wed Mar 06, 2013 12:21 pm
Location: SW Missouri
Martin Colony History: 2013-2016 Unsuccessful at starting a PM colony. Health problems.
Rehomed all my PM stuff. Good Luck and Best Wishes to All.

Got my 1st HOSP (male) of 2015 just yesterday! 2 of his fledge-mates are still on my radar.

All my stuff is SREH, so I pretty much focus on the HOSP at my site. But starlings are ALWAYS welcome in any of my traps, especially my S&S nestbox trap!

http://shop.purplemartin.org/Starling_H ... tails.aspx

I'm thinking about getting a second one and painting it white. It works every time, unlike my Bb, pellet gun, or .22! :lol:
~Mary B~

Lifelong PM Admirer and Nature Enthusiast.
Ruthless trapper of S&S year round.
2013-2016 Unsuccessful at starting a PM colony. Health problems.
Rehomed all my PM stuff. Good Luck and Best Wishes to All.
Don Strickland
Posts: 430
Joined: Fri Mar 12, 2010 4:38 pm
Location: Oklahoma/Shady Point

Dan G..
The one Dorn has is the same basic design as the three I use year around. They really work very well....I modified mine so they are super sensitive. I caught a Tiny Carolina Wren last year...(Emphasizing Sensitivity)...
Don
Matt F.
Posts: 3896
Joined: Mon Feb 28, 2005 9:48 am
Location: Houston, TX

DornCounty wrote:heard the familiar.. breeding scratch call of the HOuse Sparrow a few days ago. Yuck!
LOL
Reminds me of when Louise refers to starlings "squeaking"....LOL
Dan G
Posts: 401
Joined: Thu Jun 12, 2014 7:52 pm
Location: PA/Bellefonte
Martin Colony History: Trying since 2014. Visitors, but no nests. Several colonies with in 6 mile radius.
2020- An SY male built a nest but could not attract a mate.

Don and Dorn, Thanks for the info. I will work on it this weekend.
Bellefonte PA
2014, 1st year-a few lookers, no nests
2015, 'Spot' SY male, here every day from 5-28 to 6-23
2016 added a perch wire between house and gourd rack
offering 22 cavities, T-14 plus 8 gourds
2016, multiple visitors from 6-20 on. Almost daily
2017- Lots of visitors late in season.
2018- Adding another T-14. Few visitors
2019- Hopeful but stopped holding my breath
2020-SY male built a nest.
GeneP
Posts: 523
Joined: Mon Jul 23, 2007 7:35 am
Location: Kansas, Lawrence
Martin Colony History: 1 gourd rack with 24 gourd capacity. 2018, my 11th year hosting martins.
18 pair in 2017.

February is when I see the first Starlings house hunting. My NB trap is always waiting. Have House Sparrows in the Blaine bait trap right now.

I can catch a lot of HOSP fledglings from mid-June through early fall. Many landlords quit trapping after their Martins have left but second broods of HOSP's are being fledged at that time.
PMCA Member, Single Gourd Rack, 2019 marks 12 years hosting martins.
Dan G
Posts: 401
Joined: Thu Jun 12, 2014 7:52 pm
Location: PA/Bellefonte
Martin Colony History: Trying since 2014. Visitors, but no nests. Several colonies with in 6 mile radius.
2020- An SY male built a nest but could not attract a mate.

I built the NB house this past weekend. I deviated form the plan slightly and raised the exit hole a bit. The reason for this is because when the can was in the down position( with a bird in it) the exit hole bottom was even with the bottom of the can. I raised it so the exit hole was an inch or so above the bottom of the can thinking it would be easier for the starlings to leave. My concern is that now, as I peer into the entrance hole, i can see half of the exit hole. When the 90 degree pvc elbow is added, it may hide this a bit, but I was wondering if this would deter the starlings from entering. I hope not. there was a flock of them in the yard yesterday.
Bellefonte PA
2014, 1st year-a few lookers, no nests
2015, 'Spot' SY male, here every day from 5-28 to 6-23
2016 added a perch wire between house and gourd rack
offering 22 cavities, T-14 plus 8 gourds
2016, multiple visitors from 6-20 on. Almost daily
2017- Lots of visitors late in season.
2018- Adding another T-14. Few visitors
2019- Hopeful but stopped holding my breath
2020-SY male built a nest.
rrmartins
Posts: 1421
Joined: Tue Oct 19, 2010 8:04 am
Location: Round Rock, TX

We did not have one starling last year. Think they left after losing their buddies the year before. All of the entrances are sreh. The little rats are a different story.
Keep feeding them lead for breakfast guys, they like it.
2019
T14
7 pair
25 fledged
Dan G
Posts: 401
Joined: Thu Jun 12, 2014 7:52 pm
Location: PA/Bellefonte
Martin Colony History: Trying since 2014. Visitors, but no nests. Several colonies with in 6 mile radius.
2020- An SY male built a nest but could not attract a mate.

here is the NB trap I made. I did set it up temporarily outside. The opening was facing my garage. Apprx 10 feet away. I know there were starlings around, but none entered. It has been set up several days. The working interior part is still moving freely. It is still very cold here, and the resident birds are in no way looking for a nesting site yet. Is that why i have not caught any of the vermin in my trap, or because it is facing the garage? Any suggestions.
Attachments
my trap
my trap
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Bellefonte PA
2014, 1st year-a few lookers, no nests
2015, 'Spot' SY male, here every day from 5-28 to 6-23
2016 added a perch wire between house and gourd rack
offering 22 cavities, T-14 plus 8 gourds
2016, multiple visitors from 6-20 on. Almost daily
2017- Lots of visitors late in season.
2018- Adding another T-14. Few visitors
2019- Hopeful but stopped holding my breath
2020-SY male built a nest.
BIOteacher012
Posts: 165
Joined: Fri Mar 23, 2012 3:19 pm
Location: Wisconsin/Montello

Hi Dan,
I built an NB trap just like yours. The trap is out year round, but only starts catching starlings right about the time the Spring equinox hits and the temps get into the 40's and 50's. For me, that is right around mid to late March. From March 31st until about May 15th, it usually catches 1-2 starlings per day. Just be patient and you will see what I mean. I live in Wisconsin, so our Spring probably hits a bit later than yours. They are great traps. Just keep them close to buildings and trees. When my martins go into their snooping phase, I have occasionally seen them sit on the roof of this thing, even though it is 8 feet away from a big tree. I think the martins are attracted to its white color and large entrance hole. Always keep an entrance plug handy in case you have to temporally plug it up to keep native species out.

Also, that bit of exit showing out the back will not deter them from going in. They may peer in at first and seem hesitant. But, eventually their drive to find a nest cavity takes over and they go right in. It helps to spray the inside of the box with black spray paint. Then, they just see mostly darkness through the hole, which is an extra attractant.

Good luck!!
BrianT
2017 38 nesting pairs, 181 fledged
2016 22 nesting pairs, 113 fledged
2015 20 nesting pairs, 91 fledged
2014 10 nesting pairs, 49 fledged
2013 4 nesting pairs, 15 fledged
2012 Lots of lookers but no nesters
Chris B
Posts: 378
Joined: Sun Jun 01, 2014 4:10 pm
Location: AL/Toney

My buddy said he saw them balling up in his front yard. Out comes the semi-automatic 20 ga. He dropped 47 of the rats. Drop in the bucket but a start.
2014 8 gourds, 3 pairs nested. Ended w/ 24 total
2015 24 gourds, 22 nests. Lotsa birds!
2016 24 gourds and good activity.
2017 32 SREH gourds. Great activity.
2018 40 SREH gourds. Good finish despite big storm damage. No more dangling gourds.
2019 56+ SREH gourds, all on 3/8 rods. Birds did very well.
2020 56 SREH gourds.
Dan G
Posts: 401
Joined: Thu Jun 12, 2014 7:52 pm
Location: PA/Bellefonte
Martin Colony History: Trying since 2014. Visitors, but no nests. Several colonies with in 6 mile radius.
2020- An SY male built a nest but could not attract a mate.

Thanks Bioteacher. I was hoping that was the reason. I may bring it back in or close the hole till mid march.

Chris, tell your buddy to keep after them. I saw approx 100 swarming a tree at the high school earlier this week. One shot would have knocked down several.
Bellefonte PA
2014, 1st year-a few lookers, no nests
2015, 'Spot' SY male, here every day from 5-28 to 6-23
2016 added a perch wire between house and gourd rack
offering 22 cavities, T-14 plus 8 gourds
2016, multiple visitors from 6-20 on. Almost daily
2017- Lots of visitors late in season.
2018- Adding another T-14. Few visitors
2019- Hopeful but stopped holding my breath
2020-SY male built a nest.
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