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Blow Home - Getting them Straight in the Loft (Training)...
Author: Bob RowlandTitle: Blow Home - Getting them Straight in the Loft (Training)
Date: 2003-10-31 12:12:35Uploaded by: webmaster
From Thumper:

'Our last race was a bit of a disaster in the sense that the velocity was nearly into the 1600mpm mark. As per usual all our birds came from behind and did not stand a chance. Although I can say that our first bird was an Opal Jansen and our second bird was a Busschaert originating from Jacks lofts.

We will have to somehow find a way to make our birds NOT fly past their loft at these "Blow-Home" races.

Has anyone got any suggestions besides using a shotgun to shoot them down?'


Well you can use a big net or try putting salt on their tail as this was what I was told as a young lad when I was trying to catch wild pigeons. It didn't work or I must have had the wrong salt as I was never able to get close enough to salt them.

Now for a serious answer:
If you want your birds to not fly by it is a great help if you train your birds just before dark so they have just enough time to get home or be out over night. This method is used successfully by many as it gets them driving for home rather than just enjoying the fly. It will regiment their thinking and where I live, this is exactly what I will be doing this coming young birds.

I will be training 2 times per day but not real far. 25 miles each time is more than enough and the trick is to get their head on straight. If you allow them too much freedom they have no incentive and another great trick is to get their mind into the feed. There are several ways to do this and one is called the 5 day program which consists of giving the birds only 20% of their normal amount of feed on the first day. The 2nd day they get 40%. The 3rd day they get 60% and then 4th = 80% and finally on the 5th day they are back to a full ration but when you call them, you have their attention.

Another great lesson to get birds coming for home is to always have one seed or a pellet available so they can eat immediately after arriving home but those that lag will get nothing. I use flax for my individual seed at 20% of my entire mix and the reason of only one seed is that all pigeons will all eat uniform amounts. If you have several seeds and the early arrivals can pick what they want, they will and it may not be what you want them to fill up on.

I prefer to feed my grains individually or at least in segments as to what I feed. I start with my flax and then go to a Moult type mix and at the end I finish with more individual grains and this also allows me to watch the pigeons and see which ones as to how they act and what they crave. I do not shut off my feed when a few go to the water as here in Florida, if I did that they will not get enough fats in their system to race on and that is the fuel for the pigeons. Many think carbohydrates and rather than argue this point, I only will say I don't believe that and feed differently and have had success so my method can't be all that wrong.

Anyway, you are the boss and if the pigeons have the control over you, then you will always have them doing fly-bys and victory laps once they get there. Where I live with 70 lofts in less than 1 square mile area, trapping is everything and the winner has to fly the straightest line or you are beat.

Jerry Soignier: "Regarding the evening toss; When do you began to do this and how do you introduce it?"

Bob: "When you begin to introduce evening tosses I find it easiest to start earlier in the evening and then move the home arrival time closer to sunset.

This method was one I had to practice as my job did not give me ample time to do morning training tosses and still be to work on time so I began evening training. As the year passes on the sunsets get earlier and trying for sunrise releases are later so one must adapt. So this happens without much planning and then you realize how nature provided for you.

The time one trains did not seem to make any difference to the birds and my results were good enough that I soon felt that one can train at any time and any direction IF YOU HAVE GOOD PIGEONS. If the pigeons are not of a good quality this only shows up earlier and some of these pigeons may disappear."

Jerry Soignier: "I mean is it confusing to the birds that are used to am sun position etc. Or does it really manner?

As I am trying to both, keep my sexes apart and toss in smaller groups ; I have not come up with a method of having equal feeding for groups released say 15 minutes apart."

Bob: "The easiest way to have your groups apart is to let one sex go earlier and the next time let the other sex be first to be released. Generally when they get home, they are more interested in feed than in mating up if you keep them slightly on THE EDGE where they respond to the call for feed. If they will not pay attention to you, then you are probably overfeeding or you are feeding them too much before they are trained. If need be, go to once a day feeding and you will have their attention without the worry about how much you feed."

Jerry Soignier: "The early arrivals will eat more than I wish and of maybe the wrong stuff than those related maybe 20 minutes later. Do I go to a pellet for them to come home to or other single grain? Than feed the race mix when I get home."

Bob: "I try to feed individual grains at all times if possible as this way the entire team should come into, a similar condition without some being seeders and eating only small grains where others are pigs and eat the large grains and become overweight.

The easiest way to feed individual grains is to give them the feed they like least when they arrive home as they seldom overeat on these grains. Kind of like asking a kid to eat spinach rather than ice cream or candy. They will eat only enough to take the edge off their hunger but then you can continue the feeding when you get there.

Hand feeding or individually giving grains allows you time to study your pigeons and this also promotes the bond between you and your birds, I have no proof of this statement but I believe this bond may sometimes be the reason for a pigeon to continuing trying to home even when the weather is tough."


It is our responsibility to teach others how to enjoy this sport if we intend on having a sport to enjoy! There are many that have great knowledge but I have never seen an article by them to educate those less talented than they are. This attitude makes it hard to grow a sport when there are so many other things that one can occupy their time with.

So in conclusion, once you learn how to achieve better results, try sharing them with those that ask. Friendships are created by having mutual interests and goals and I thank God for all the wonderful friends and acquaintances I have met through the pigeon sport.

Hope this helps someone:
Bob Rowland
SpringHill, FLorida

Coo time for a brew!...Where next?
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