Racing Pigeons -Selecting The Breeders

Select Your Breeders Right As This Is The Future Of Your Loft

The qualities of the true fancier reveal themselves from the moment he decide to start the racing pigeons sport. He focuses his entire attention on breeding. Racing should be secondary importance and only serves as a test that shows the breeder whether he has chosen the right way or not when he selected his breeding pairs .Breeding should always be of great importance in a fancier career for it is the key to success on this sport.

When pairing a cock and a hen we bring together two birds of the same species that have certain similarities, i say certain because there are differences in between them and they are quite a few. The offspring of this pair differ both from their parents and each other .If we are breeding from first class stock we expect the progeny to match their parents ,if not surpass them ,in flying ability, physique and general racing our aim is to produce Top stock and top racers over our Entire Career and not just occasionally.

When selecting your breeders a few things you will need to take in consideration

If you select your breeders from your own loft then this will HAVE TO BE pigeons with top results for at least two years in a row after they`ve reached maturity.

If you decide to buy breeders then these will have to be either allready proven breeders that have allready bred champions , or again racing champions for at least two years in a row after they ve reached maturity,and this should in very good health and full of vitality.

You can always find more advanced techniques on my published books

Look inside

Take your time when deciding to bring new birds in your loft .

Do your homework well Check closely their performances ,but also where possible their parents and grand parents performances .Families with top results should be your first priority .

Take in consideration that these breeders can produce you about 10 youngsters

each year /each pair

You should use your breeders to produce eggs ,and not to rear youngsters.

Rearing the youngsters should be someone elses job .

This pairs who have the mission of rearing should not be older than 5 years .

When getting older pigeons secret less and less( breast) milk ,which they feed the young ones on their first week of life .

Personally i distribute 1 youngster per pair to be reared that way they can give him / her all the attention in the world and they don t get tired in the process of rearing.

Make priorities in the terms of what you expect in 3 years time from your birds

and decide which path you take... Quality or Quantity...

Keep in mind what is the size of your breeding loft and how many pairs can be hosted ...ideally the space you ll need for a single pair of breeders is 2 cubic meter at the least ...which means ...1 meter deep /1 meter wide /2meter high.

I ve mention earlier the word vitality in your breeders and what does this mean ,the word vitality derives from the Latin "vita" ,meaning life. Please do not confused with liveliness, the two words have quite different meanings. A vital pigeon may be lively, though, one does not exclude the other, but a restless pigeon which we sometimes call foolish since it will chase even its own shadow, because it is nervous all day long ,runs the risk of dropping out of the race prematurely because it is spent.

Such pigeons mature very quickly, and they are hardly ever found in the middle or long distance races.

The majority of the racing pigeons that possess vitality have a calm ,composed disposition .Vitality means the power to sustain life ,to grow old and yet REMAIN YOUNG .In other words the physical functions remain active for a long time .

Detrimental outside factors ,environmental influences, everything a racing pigeon encounters, have no ill effect on such racing pigeons, and this vitality is passed on to their offspring.

Many fanciers are too slow to notice when a pigeon shows signs of declining, of ageing when others are still in their prime .Such bird should not be used for breeding because it lacks vitality. The best age for stock pigeons is often discussed, many breeders are against breeding from old birds but it is good to know that both old and young birds can produce equally good ofsprings.

In the breeding loft of many top class fanciers we can find birds of either sex who are great-- great grandparents, birds that rich even ten twelve or even more years old .The conclusion we can draw from here is that a fancier who races well but does not possess a number of old stock pigeons is still in the initial stages of racing pigeons .

He has made a good start ,the future looks promising ,but the but the continuity of producing good babies it has not been achieved yet .As a rule ,the age of a breeding pigeon is nothing to go by ,but it can be said for sure that cocks usually last longer then the hens .

Personally i will breed from a good racing pigeon cock for as long as i see him healthy and full of vitality regardless of his age ,from time to time i do serve the old cocks vitamine E which is a well known fertility vitamin.

With a hen the things are slightly different .As long old cocks and hens can produce sperm and egg cells

these are of the same quality that they were years before when they were produced for their first time. The chromosomes do not do not suffer any deterioration and this a scientific fact not a speculation.

Nevertheless ,when an old hen is suspected of approaching physical decline ,the youngsters bred from her must be closely watched. If they show any signs of weakness the fancier should intervene immediately.

The hen produces the yolk and the albumen contained in the egg ,the food for the growing embryo. A worn out organism can not be expected to yield high -quality food ,a hen therefore has had her days sooner than the cock .The throat of an old cock often shows a grey deposit, which means that the regurgitated will be of inferior quality .This bird is too old to be let to feed youngsters .

Now please don t get me wrong our loft must not become an old bird breeding loft but if you find one which has the above attributes then why not .We should never hesitate to stock a bird which is a good racer and producer and is full of vitality before is too old .

Too many first class racing pigeons are sacrificed on the year after year races and then regret for not having stocked them in time .We often ask way too much of them ,both in racing and breeding .Top class birds deserve to be treated with consideration because the better we treat them the longer will serve us and the longer will enjoy their results year after year .

After you have chosen the two birds you are going to pair together you will wit anxiously to see the result. The combination of chromosomes and genes will decide whether the hatched bird is a fail or a top one .Do not let nobody full you by telling you that if you put two good birds together the results will be unheard off .

The term of "blood relation "is very in use these days but very unjustified for today s biology which has established that the hereditary factors of parents are not passed on to their children through the blood but 100% through their genes of the chromosomes.

What are chromosomes ? They are tiny thread -like bodies contained in the nucleus of a cell .Each species has its own number of chromosomes . The sperm of a pigeon cock contains thirty -one.They differ in shape and sizes but each individual chromosome is always constant in shape and size in any particular species .

When the nucleus of the sperm which has half the regular number ,unites with that of the ovum which also has half ,each chromosome takes a position along side the corresponding of the other cell , thus forming a pair .

What do we know about genes ?Genes are bodies of molecular dimensions .The number contained in every sex cell is unknown and the scientists believe that it runs into several thousands .Each gene may control certain characteristics but most of them are determined by more then one gene .

As the sperm of a pigeon unites with the ovum of a hen ,the number of chromosomes is doubled in numbers . Nobody can predict what developes from this fertilized egg ,because every new life is a new combination of thousand of hereditary factors contributed by the parents ,grandparents ,grand-grandparents .

I can only hope that this short explanation of chromosomes and genes did not mixed you up ,my only thought was that if any reader or visitor of this site would like to know a bit more about this particular subject then why not find it here .

You can always find more advice on my published books

Look inside