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Let’s talk about “Repeaters”...
Author: Bob RowlandTitle: Let’s talk about “Repeaters”
Date: 2005-04-19 19:13:02Uploaded by: webmaster
If a pigeon does well for you in a race, is that pigeon a good one? If a pair produces a young one that races well, is this a good breeding pair? It is my opinion that regardless of how big the one win was or how good the young one from a pair is, the value of these pigeons are in how often they can repeat the performance.

I refer to the quality I look for by referring to those pigeons which possess this ability as "REPEATERS". The word "repeater" can be somewhat misleading as many will tell you about a pigeon that always is among the first to arrive for them. I then ask what the pigeon has won! A pigeon that is usually one of the first pigeons to your loft does not mean that they are also a good pigeon. To be a good pigeon means that they must come to your loft many times among the early pigeons to your loft AND they must also win TOP PRIZES for you. If your pigeon arrives early to your loft but you are late in the race, then what has this pigeon won for you? This is also a good indicator of the depth in quality of your loft.

If you ever owned one of these truly quality pigeons then you will never forget how that pigeon made you feel! If you NEVER OWNED one of these repeaters, then you will never know how good it feels to have one of this quality. The feelings are unmistakable and such that they will be with you during your entire racing career. In my entire racing career, I have only had a few of what I would call "SUPER REPEATERS". These are the pigeons that make you famous! Look at all the Super Record Birds of Europe and you will see the ultimate of the elite. However, note that those pigeons are usually short distance speed birds as it is very difficult to prepare a distance pigeon so it can never race 30 or 40 super distance races in their racing career. More about this further down!

The prize list in today's pigeon racing requires that a pigeon is among the early arrivals if they are to win special prizes. To achieve respect in the prestigious special races requires that our breeding pigeons produce young ones that have the ability to be a "Repeater". If the pair does not produce many young ones that have the ability to come home with the leaders and also do this often, then the odds are against that pigeon winning a big prize. Are we are just playing the lotto rather than pulling a coupon? The good ones are like always having a coupon that can AND IS redeemed often. I ask you if you would prefer to show up at one of these races with confidence knowing your pigeon will be among the early ones or would you prefer to play the lotto? I know where my preference is! However, for someone to win, ....... someone else must lose!

Why is it that our pigeons and their parents do not possess the ability to be or produce a repeater? I believe that we have allowed for this non-performance standard to become the "NORM" in our loft. As I am writing this article, our old bird races are quickly nearing the end and when I look at my results for this year, they are below what I feel is acceptable. The pigeons I raced this year were never any good as young ones and some of these were also held over for more than one old bird season with the expectation they would be better the next year. ALL THAT HAPPENED IS THEY GOT OLDER!! They never got any better.

The races where I had an acceptable performance occurred because one of the pigeons that raced well previously gave a reasonable performance again but the fact that they did not give another good performance the following week leaves one trying to figure which pigeon should be entered into the special pools.

We all, and that definitely includes myself, think that because a pair produced us one reasonable pigeon that they will do it again. If they do NOT, then just how good is their performance and how secure is our future? The same is true for the pigeons we race where we miss on picking the proper pigeon for the nominated pigeon or special entry pigeon. When you have a repeater, there is nothing very difficult to determine which pigeon to enter in any special prize race. With a team of this type of pigeons, we go looking for open races but without these special ones, we find many excuses to stay away.

Do we run from the open races because we are not as attentive and accurate as we were previously or does the pigeon have a genetic fault? I have noticed several pigeons that I felt were in top shape and should place high so they were entered into the special prize classification but only to be disappointing. After having them miss from winning a prize several times, one soon does not enter the special classifications. Then in a week or two, the pigeon arrives early and we ask our self why it was not entered this time?

It is difficult to play the extra games when we lack confidence in our ability to pick a good one but many times it is because we have little to pick from. Our ability to pick is probably as good as ever but you can't make chicken soup from chicken droppings and yet we make excuses as to our results.

In conclusion:
I think that we must have a standard and it must always be maintained or intensified. If we allow our expectations to be reduced, then we will have poor results more often. To get to a level of excellence a large house cleaning may be necessary and it makes it very difficult for many to do this but if you have been honest with your analysis, the results in future years should improve. This means that we won't be breeding a potentially good pigeon with a mate that offers nothing to your loft. All that lesser quality mate can offer you is more poor quality and more heartaches. When you begin racing with a smaller team, that is of higher quality, all the work and expense goes down BUT the RESULTS should come up.

If your pigeons have been of a special quality in the past, you may just be going through a bad year or two of breeding but if this has gone on for a long time, then your pigeons, or your loft, or your system requires some changes.

One special word of CAUTION: There are certain families that rarely breed repeaters and even though you can get some super races from these pigeons one must ask their self if this trait is acceptable. If you are just racing to have a good race now and then, this may be acceptable but if you want to play the special races and special entry prizes, then this lack of repeating will cost you many entry fees with scattered results as to prizes!

Hope this helps:
Bob Rowland
Spring Hill, FLorida USA

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