NEWS FROM SCOTLAND
Reports by Joe Murphy
Over the past few weeks while speaking to fanciers the same old subject of Young Bird Losses is the main topic of conversations. I had one lad enquire if there was anything out of the ordinary happening within the ‘Space Weather’ but up to now this seems to be quiet however there is a rise in the Kp Index for the end of the August and the beginning of next month. I would say that the main problem is young bird sickness as it is rife throughout Britain just now. Some fanciers are saying that when (or if they get them home) they start being sick that night or the next day. The thing that I cannot understand is fanciers who have this problem and STILL send their birds in their club baskets onto the federation transporter and then everyone has the problem. Then there is the problem of race controllers and convoyers who at times have escalated the losses through bad decisions like liberating pigeons when the weather is not good or in areas where birds are homing from a race. All these issues contribute to the amount of young bird losses but I’m fed up bringing this up as it happens year after year. Kevin and I have thought about this and other issues like Natural or Darkness youngsters. We have tried both systems and I have to say that if you wish to win young bird races then it is darkness but there are many who cannot race this system. These babies are shut up from early evening until say 9am the following day for the first few months of their lives and when they come off the darkness they have bodies like yearlings but the most important thing is they DO NOT have brains of a squeaker. So it is very important to start training them PROPERLY otherwise you will find out to your cost that you drop them like ‘snow of a dyke’ and that is another reason for the losses that are happening just now.
Many fanciers don’t even take the time to basket train their youngsters. ‘Oh they will learn in the race basket’, they say, however I have always been a great believer in basket training the youngsters when they come out of the nest. I keep them for a week in a basket and make sure they are eating and drinking before I give them up to Kevin to race. This training is invaluable to them in later life as is the training given to them in their first year of life. This year we have decided to keep them on natural and to revert back to my old methods of training them. So Kevin has already trained them in baskets of 15 down as far as Glenrothes and the past couple of weeks I have met him and brought them down to my house in Thornton which is 40 miles from Arbroath. The first time I let them go in 5s with 15 minutes intervals and we dropped 3 but 2 returned the following day. Then a few days later we did the same thing but this time I let them go in 2s with some longer intervals than others as at first they were not sure. However as the morning progressed they were getting out and away within a few minutes. I started at 08-30am and finished with the last lot of 3 going at 14-45 hours. Kevin phoned me at night and asked how I had got on and I explained (tongue in cheek) he was a lucky young man to have a dad who would sit that length of time liberating pigeons for him. However as I have the time and I did this myself long ago I was more than happy to do this for him as I honestly believe we will get some good pigeons from this group of pigeons. They will all have had to use their brains to get home and not just have followed the tail in front of them. Then it came to the crucial question ‘How did you get on?’ and a happy Kevin said ‘All Home’ so I was well pleased. As I say, if we get some good old bird national pigeons from this group of babies then all the work we have done will have been worth the time and effort. I have high hopes for this team of young birds as this year I have been very selective in my breeding and with the new introductions of the Deweerdt family I’m more than happy with the quality of youngsters bred. The basket will determine how good they are but I have high hopes for this team of 2014 bred youngsters and I will keep you informed of their progress. One thing is for certain, we are not prepared to breed youngsters every year and keep throwing them away as is happening just now. We, like the pigeons, are using our brains to try and sort out a problem.
I received a 1965 Diary from Malvyn Lusher that he has treasured and loved so much over the years so could he please give me a call as I have misplaced his phone number.
Received some information from my mate Guy Reed who wrote: 'Was over visiting our mutual friend Bernard Deweerdt in Kortemark who was racing from Perpignan the last old bird international race of the 2014 season. There is a little story to go with the above race. As you know Joe, the Belgians put great emphasis on nominating their pigeons for every race as these are normally the birds that compete for the ACE pigeons top prize awards at the end of the season. Bernard had a good race. He sent 41 birds and had 47% of them on the winning day. His 1st bird home was his 8th nominated pigeon winning 5th club, 9th West Flanders, 36th Belgian national and 71st International from an entry of 17.962 birds. He then got 2 birds together one going straight into the loft the other landing on his daughter Emmy’s new house (which is in front of Bernard’s house and loft) and Bernard put it down initially as a stray. His 2nd bird was his 2nd nominated bird Clovis and was timed to win 125th National. Other birds arrived home and were timed then finally after some 25 minutes the bird from Emmy’s house came over to the loft and Bernard realised it was his 1st nominated candidate. (He was frightened several weeks ago by the builders working on Emmy’s house and was missing for a couple of days) but Bernard thought he had recovered from the experience and decided to send him to the International race. However this time spent sitting on the house roof cost him several good positions in the national and he ended up being 220th open. Considering there was an entry of 6.285 birds he could have achieved a higher position still as we know in pigeon racing they don’t count until the rubber is in the clock. Another tale to this story is that prior to the race Bernard decided to switch his choice of nominated pigeons around and make Clovis his 2nd nominated pigeon with the other bird his No 1 choice for the race. In previous years he had always picked Clovis as his 1st bird with the other his 2nd nomination but this year for some reason decided to change them about to his cost. As a matter of interest Joe Filip Deweerdt had 2 out of 7 on the result and had more the following day, speak to you later on Yours Guy.'
World War Pigeon Memorial
Last weekend I was to go and assist Linda Brooks and John Duthie at the BBC World War One Memorial in Dundee City Square. Unfortunately our brother in law was rushed into hospital and the family were called for and I could not attend the above. I phoned John and informed him of our situation and he passed on the message to Linda. As stated the BBC were running this event and John Duthie brought down some youngsters and put them in show pens for the public to view. He also left some old birds that were used to carry a message (from the public) back to his loft and this was filmed by the BBC crew. There was a good response from the public with many people from all over viewing the stand i.e. people from Northern Ireland; Portsmouth; the Midlands and of course other parts of Scotland. They were very impressed by the information given on the use of pigeons during the wars and were amazed how they managed to find their way home. Well done to the BBC on highlighting ‘Racing Pigeons’ and to Linda and John for promoting the sport within Scotland.
The above club are holding a late bred sale in aid of purchasing a portacabin to use as a Pigeon Club. The sale starts on 31st August until 7th September and you can check this out on Elimar. Many top fanciers have donated pigeons to this cause and the members are most grateful for their support. If you require any more information contact Dave Harper on 07948398375.
For the 3rd young bird race from Arniston 30 members sent 725 birds liberated at 10-30am into a west wind the race was dominated again by Forfar members with Davie Glen in 1st 2nd 3rd 5th 7th 8th 9th 10th 11th 12th 13th 14th 15th 16th & 18th federation with David Liddle of the same club in 4th & 6th places and Macaulay/Ferguson & Curran are in 17th & 19th place with another Forfar member Ian Scott in 20th position.
East section is won by Willie MacKnight of Montrose followed by club mate G Scott in 2nd place with A S Whyte in 4th 5th 6th & 8th places. B Main of Inchcape is 3rd with D & D Hay of Gourdon in 7th & 10th section with M Wallace & son of Montrose in 9th place.
Club winners are as follows: Arbroath A & A Shepherd; Forfar D Glen; Gourdon D & D Hay; Montrose W MacKnight; Inchcape B Main with no birds entered by Letham club. Points Competition: 1st is David Liddle on 221 points with Davie Glen in 2nd place on 204 points.
Davie Glen who took 15 places in Angus top 20
Jim Curran and Gavin Ferguson who took the 1st 20 in Angus Fed last week
News from Charlie Cameron telling me that 3 members sent 86 birds to Arniston liberated at 10-30am into a west wind the winner was young Andy Shepherd and his mum on 1323 well done to you both. Second is club president Bill Dorward with Charlie Cameron in 3rd place.
Almond Valley Federation
News from Jimmy Young who writes ‘Flying from Otterburn the convoy of 1849 birds were liberated at 11-20am and Dougie Bald tops the federation again this week and is also 2nd federation his 1st bird a direct Willie Hay bird crossed with a Porter & Richardson Wildermeersch hen purchased from Gordon Grant. In 2nd position is a bird from Willie Hay this time a black cock crossed with a blue pied hen again from Porter & Richardson Wildermeersch family also acquired from Gordon Grant and is a daughter of Porter & Richardson 1st section 2nd open NRCC Thurso pigeon. In 3rd place is Colin Bain with a Staff Van Reet hen that he acquired from a fancier friend in England who flies the Van Reets and wished to have them tested into Scotland. 4th federation is Ian Jamieson with an original Bricoux cock crossed with a Kilpatrick crossed Delbar hen from his father’s pigeons. 5th federation is Chris McCann with a similar bred Van Reet as Colin Bain from the same fancier in England. In 6th & 7th places is Colin Bain with his first a Staff Van Reet from his old family and the second young bird is from his Robert Cormack family. The last 3 places of 8th 9th & 10th federation are won by Freddy Jamieson & Son of East Calder and his birds are from his direct Galaxy family of pigeons that are flying very well for him.
East Calder HS
The 175 birds were liberated at Otterburn at 11-20 into a west wind taking the first 3 places are Freddy Jamieson & Son with bird direct Galaxy family as mentioned above.
Dunfermline RPC news from Walker Kennedy who writes ‘Hi Joe I will give you two results this week as have been really busy. Our first young bird race was from Kelso a distance of 52 miles to most lofts and first over the pad this week is John Robertson with a velocity of 963 John has been flying well this year so well done from all the members. In 2nd & 3rd places is Frank Mitchell on 950 & 949 with his family of birds from the late John Traill. On behalf of the Dunfermline members we would like to thank Gordon Turnbull and Frank Mitchell for training the clubs young birds with great success this season. However regarding the Kelso race I have to say that the members of the Fife federation should have a rethink regarding this race point; as Kelso has not been a good race point for our old and young birds over the years. With the amount of losses we have every year from this race point maybe a change is required. For the 2nd race from Alnwick 6 members sent 202 birds and the leaders are W & D Kennedy velocity 1035 with a darkness young cock on the roundabout his breeding is Van der Rhee crossed Van Hove in 2nd 3rd & 4th place is the ‘Flying Sparkie’ with his family of A & L Painter Cattrysse well done Alistair McInnes. Hope you and your good lady are fine Walker’.
East of Scotland Federation
News from Tom McEwen who informs us that the federation were at Tow Law and liberated at 10.00 am into a north west wind. Taking the top spot and 6th place is the inform loft of Tom Waddell from Prestonpans. Jim McNeil of Tranent is once again to the fore being 2nd federation. Bobby Dickson of Prestonpans has a nice double for 3rd & 7th places. Mr & Mrs Burgess of Ormiston are again near the top in 4th place they are followed by Dougie Grieve of Longniddry with a treble in 5th 8th & 9th places and completing the top ten is the inform loft of Rab Waddell of Prestonpans.
Top spot goes to Tom Waddell with a chequer hen on 1205 he is bred from John Brown bloodlines. Bobby Dickson is 2nd with a blue pied cock on 1188 from his own family of pigeons. Third is Tom Waddell with a chequer hen on 1169 from his own bloodlines.
Pentland Hills Federation & New Lothian RPC
News from Andy Miller who writes ‘Hi Joe 15 clubs sent 3803 birds to Tow Law (1) race point on 9th August with a 10am liberation into a north west wind. Taking the first 3 places are Brown and Black of Woodburn with the winner lifting £134 into the bargain. I’m sorry no details but I’m waiting on Dave Brown getting back to me. L Mitchell of Castlebrae is 4th with J & T Young of Danderhall are 5th & 6th with I & I Hunter of the same club in 7th place. E Willis of Castlebrae is 8th with his club mate J Mitchell in 9th spot. Willie Kinnear & son Barry of Danderhall are 10th & 11th.
Woodburn 328 birds; Brown & Black 1213 1212.7 & 1212.4
Castlebrae 156 birds; L. Mitchell 1198 Willis 1184.9 L. Mitchell 1184.6
Danderhall 466 birds; J. & T. Young 1193 & 1191 Hunter 1190
Sighthill 315 birds; Affleck 1174 1173 & 1172
Edinburgh Premier 234 birds; Dick 1165 Cunningham & Cains 1161 & 1151
Gilmerton 355 birds; Baillie & Priest 1162 A.W. Robertson 1111 W. Hume 1099
Whitecraigs 212 birds; Kelly 1145.7 1145.5 & 1085
Loanhead 202 birds; Cherrie 1127 Murray 1123.7 Cherrie 1123.1
Edinburgh West 193 birds; McCaig 1123 C. Bennett 1117 C. Bennett 1081
Penicuik 146 birds; Lawrie 1098 1092 & 1083
Bonnyrigg 225 birds; Murphy 1092 J. Dewar 1089 Murphy 1088
Newtongrange 91 birds; Johnston 1083 Watson & Daughter 1080 Johnston 1039
Peebles 52 birds;
New Lothian 69 birds;
Traprain 470 birds; K Newcombe 1228 1214 & 1213
Others 289 birds
An elderly couple had just learned how to send text messages on their mobile phones. The wife was a romantic type and the husband was more of a no-nonsense guy. One afternoon the wife went out to meet a friend for coffee. She decided to send her husband a romantic text message and she wrote: "If you are sleeping, send me your dreams. If you are laughing, send me your smile. If you are eating, send me a bite. If you are drinking, send me a sip. If you are crying, send me your tears. I love you." The husband texted back to her: "I'm on the toilet. Please instruct."
Once upon a time there lived a king. The king had a beautiful daughter, the Princess, but there was a problem. Everything the princess touched would melt. No matter what - metal, wood, stone - anything she touched would melt. Because of this, men were afraid of her and nobody would dare marry her. The king despaired. What could he do to help his daughter? He consulted his wizards and magicians. One wizard told the king, 'If your daughter touches one thing that does not melt in her hands, she will be cured.' The king was overjoyed and came up with a plan next day, he held a competition. Any man that could bring his daughter an object that would not melt would marry her and inherit the king's wealth. Three young Prices took up the challenge. The first brought a sword of the finest steel, but alas, when the princess touched it, it melted, and the prince went away sadly. The second prince brought diamonds, he thought diamonds are the hardest substance in the world and would not melt, but alas, once the princess touched them, they melted. he too was sent away disappointed. The third prince approached, he told the princess, 'Put your hand in my pocket and feel what is in there.' The princess did as she was told, though she turned red. She felt something hard, she held it in her hand, and it did not melt!!! The king was overjoyed in fact everybody in the kingdom was overjoyed. And the third prince married the princess and they both lived happily ever after.
Question: What was in the prince's pants? (Scroll down for the answer)
© Compiled by Joe Murphy
M & M's of course. They melt in your mouth, not in your hand. What were you thinking??
You know I wouldn't send anything rude this is a family paper!!!!