by Danny Kinnear
I have had pigeons since I was a little boy. My dad had Tipplers, that’s how I got interested in the Tippler sport.
2. How did you acquire your Tipplers and from whom?
I acquired my Tipplers from Oskar Zovich in Toronto.
3. How big is your loft and how many pairs do you breed from? What is the method by which you breed?
I do not have a loft right now. Nino Bugeja has my breeders for me. I try and breed no more than ten pair. Usually eight pair is enough for me. You don’t need a lot of breeders. I try and breed two birds that are compatible, meaning body type. Birds must be proven, meaning flying times or off of birds that are proven. Birds must have balance. I like a bird with a good eye sign. It is not the most important thing, but it is one thing that I look for along with feather, body and also a good throat. The throat must be a pretty pink. It means the bird is in good health.
4. How do you settle your youngsters and method of training once they are settled?
Youngsters are put on the floor at about seventeen to nineteen days. They watch the older birds eat and they learn to eat faster. Birds are put into the fly section at about twenty-four or five days. I feed them good feed, high in protein. All the while they are allowed to go into the trap everyday. Then I put them on straight barley half rations. I call them every time I feed them. They must know that when I call them it is feeding time. They must respond to my call before they are allowed to be outside the trap.
When I am satisfied that they are responding to my call they are allowed to go on the roof with the droppers. Droppers must respond to my call or they don’t go out on the roof with the babies. I try and keep them on the roof for about a week if I can. They usually take off by then if not sooner. Every time they try to go off the roof I work the droppers and get them on the coop. After four or five times up in the air they try to kit. Once they are kitting their training starts. They are released by themselves and when I see that they are starting to lower I throw the droppers. I increase their flying time to about five to six hours of training, depending on the feed. I give them a change of feed about two weeks before their first fly. This is to increase their flying time. They should do at least ten hours. If they do this, then I know they are ready for a feed up.
5. Do you fly in competition or do you fly for personal pleasure? Explain reason for either answer.
I used to fly in competition. I have not lately. Once I get settled and have my birds I hope to fly in competition again.
6. What grains do you use in training and in feed -up. What determines your selection?
I fly my young birds on barley and some wheat in training. Feed-up contains a lot of small seeds. I use canary seed, milo, sunflower seeds, wheat, some rape, a little nyjer and safflower. It all depends on the weather.
7. Do you feel the club and the members do enough to encourage beginners to the sport? Any suggestions?
I think the club is doing a fine job in recruiting new members. We have a lot of members that are always willing to help a new member.
8. Any comments or suggestions to improve the sport in general?
The pigeon sport regrettably is a dying sport. Not a nice thing to think of. With all the new bylaws and so many other things to do. The young are very hard to entice to the sport. We need youth to carry on with the sport. Some of us old timers in the sport should do our best to help newcomers with advice etc.
9. What is your expectation of the CNTU, and what do you think is the club’s expectation of you?
My expectation of the CNTU is to have as many guys fly as possible and to promote the Tippler sport. The club expectations of myself, is to fly in at least one or more races a year.
10. Any ideas or comments for the newsletter?
I think the newsletter is doing just fine. The Secretary and the President of the CNTU are doing a great job.
11. Top three tips from your experience with Tipplers.
My top three tips are:
1. Don’t keep a lot of birds, do not overcrowd.
2. Keep birds healthy. Without health you have nothing. Keep coops clean. Birds clean of lice and mites. Vaccinate.
3. Obtain the best birds that you can afford. Get them from a flyer with a reputation of flying ability. Also have patience with your birds. Don’t rush them.
Thanks Danny for the pictures and for answering the questions. Nice Job!