You can win races with birds you bought for $10, and beat birds purchased for $200,
if you can out-train the competition.
Young birds (babies fully feathered) are first trained to go through the “Trap” into the loft. A bird that flies home at a winning speed, say 46 mph (1349.34 yards per minute (ypm), can lose the race by sitting on the loft roof just five minutes before going through the trap for their time to be recorded. After ‘Trap Training’ is loft flying.
The birds are allowed to fly outside around the loft for say 30 minutes, then an hour, before being called to go home for food. When these young birds begin circling the loft out of your sight, they are learning their home territory for perhaps a two mile radius.
Next is what is called road training. The birds are put into your basket (cage) and you drive them along the race course for one mile and release them. The next day you take them three miles, then maybe three days later, six miles. Then twice per week training until you are out at least 50 miles. Release in the morning is best.
Your birds are released as a group until you're out along the race course about 20 miles. Then they should be re-released from the same spot again but this time one bird at a time, so they learn to fly home regardless of where other birds in the race are going..
These procedures not only train the birds to know how to find their home from long distances, but builds them up physically to have good muscle strength and endurance.
We have pamphlets available that describe in more detail the process pr training.
Something to watch when training. Morning is best when road training, but in any event, make sure the birds have at least 4 hours of daylight to find their way home.
Rainy days- no training. Yes, they are hardy animals, but why subject these thoroughbreds of the pigeon world to pneumonia!
Wind conditions are also important. While a tail wind along the race course (for us, South to North) will make flight times faster in training,
It's not good training to make them fight a cross wind when they don't need to. Also, don't train in fog. If you can't see, neither can the birds. The heat of the summer is another concern for obvious reasons. Poor training gives disappointing results.
Wind speeds above 10 mph
Temperatures above 85 degrees Fahrenheit
Fog with less than five miles visibility.
Home Sno-King News The Sport of Pigeon Racing Our 4-H program Contact