The Joe Murphy Column
I have finally worked out my pairings for the new season and to be honest I have been changing these around for months; you think you have the right pairing by checking each bird’s breeding abilities, their offspring performances over the years. Then I’ve check the pedigree’s of each bird, I also pair up on eyesign and so I then study the photographs of their eyes and matched these up on the computer. I also take into consideration if the birds match as a pair, feather quality, balance, throat etc. Now that all this is done I’m intending to pair up this week the 11th February, which is an important date to me. I have also been busy doing little jobs on the loft by adding in some new vents so that the air will clear the roof tiles inside the loft, as these have gathered some cobwebs over the years. With Storm Ciara due this weekend this will test them out and see if they work as the wind speeds have to be over 70 to 80 mph. Margaret gave me a help to take down the plywood that block off my nest boxes during the winter months. I put v perches on them so the birds sit on these during the winter and it is easier to clear the droppings off the floor. However, the cocks go mad when they see their boxes again and you have to keep an eye on them with all the fighting that goes on at this time.
Received a phone call from Johnny Mallaburn of Alnwick enquiring if I knew the phone number or address of Wilf MacIntosh, I informed Johnny that I did not but would put in a request for Wilf to get in contact with him. Seemingly Wilf purchased some babies from him and his brother Martin and did exceptionally well with them, and Johnny wanted to rekindle their contact. So, if you read this Wilf please give Johnny a phone.
Received an email from Mike Shepherd who wrote: ‘Hi Joe, further to your item on the ceramic pigeon trophy in this week’s Racing Pigeon: Like most that I have seen the one illustrated is missing its base. When they were produced each had a square ceramic base which contained the information as to what it was awarded for. It would appear that the base was the most vulnerable to damage and sadly many did not survive. They were manufactured by the Rhead family. During my time as National Flying Club secretary I got to know the then head of the company, Norman Rhead, very well, for he served on the committee of the N F C for many years and was President from 1977 to 1979. I recall Norman telling me that his father was convoyer for the N F C back in the 1930s. When I was working for The R P at that time in Doughty Street, Norman gave us one of those trophies for the museum. I trust this is of some use to you, cheers Mike Shepherd. I thanked Mike for the above information. Allen Concliffe of Wolverhampton also phoned to inform me that Carr’s DID NOT purchase the trophies I wrote about in last week’s issue, but they heard of fanciers offering up to £7000 for them, sorry for my mistake Allen.
Received an email from my dear friend Billy Holland who wrote and said, ‘Hi Joe, I’ve just read your article about your grandson hearing that’s great news for your family and more importantly for young Conner himself. He will come on great now that his hearing is better, it is always a worry with children and grandchildren with health issues. May I also send my congratulations to you on winning the ARB Trophy it is well deserved for all your years of hard work helping getting good pigeons recognised; yours in sport Billy Holland’. I also wrote and thanked Billy for his kind words.
Received an email from Ian Gerrard who wrote, ‘Dear Joe, just another quick message, I know you wrote the article way back in 2009, but I have just found the piece you done on John Kirkpatrick. It is brilliant, just brilliant. As I mentioned to you before, when I raced birds, they were Kirkpatrick's, stock inbred to Solway King from Louella, then some cracking birds from a chap in Carlisle called Michael Giaccapozzi, he had several lofts full of birds bred down from the Galabank birds, indeed he had loft books and prize cards from John Kirkpatrick, combined they bred me some very decent birds and I felt I was on the right lines, one year I was second fed from Sartilly with a red yearling hen it won the section, and yearling trophy, I think I won the club by about an hour and half, the same year I was first and second section, second open with two young birds, both Kirkpatrick's, in fact that's the only strain I had. I do so very much miss racing pigeons, it's a wonderful hobby, I have been involved over the years in showing rabbits, Greyhound racing, Harness Racing, Dog Agility, but racing pigeons in my view is the truest test of a person as a stockman. Sadly as you know my involvement due to a terrible hawk problem, is keeping some for the pleasure of looking at them, and reading your wonderful articles. You do a wonderful job Joe, yours is the first thing I look for on a Friday morning. Best wishes to you and your family, and hope Kevin has a great season: kind regards Ian’.
This week’s Photos
These 3 were taken at the SHU show and are of Tom McLeod of Tranent with our son Kevin Murphy, Tom was a great friend of the late Eddie Newcombe and he is also a top pigeon fancier and man. Then we have Walter Boswell of Hamilton who won is 4th Silver Award in the SNFC during the 2019 season. This has been achieved in the space of the past 7 years which is quite incredible. Walter has named his newest award winner a chequer hen ‘Louella Mary’ after his late big sister. ‘Mary’ won her SNFC Silver Award at the last old bird race in 2019 from Roye winning 3rd section E 30th open. Last year from the same race point ‘Mary’ won 3rd section E 37th open to add to her previous 2018 win from the SNFC Ypres race point where she won 11th section E 120th open. The dam of ‘Louella Mary’ is ‘Louella Jenna’ also a SNFC Silver Award winner and she is also the dam of ‘Louella Lady Helen’ who in 2018 was Scotland’s ‘Bird Of The Year’ winning the SHU Dewar Trophy and her SNFC Silver Award; A truly outstanding family of pigeons whose base Louella Pigeon Stud and is a direct son of champion ‘De Barcelona’ a winner 7 times from 500 to 700 miles. He won 10th national 8042 birds: 19th international Barcelona 27,669 birds flying 780 miles. He also won 159th national St Vincent 6052 birds flying 670 miles; 134th national Bordeaux 6299 birds, he was one of only 10 birds from a collective entry of 180,546 birds to achieve a top 20 international position racing over 1250 kilometres He was also clocked twice from Tarbes flying 700 miles. The son of ‘De Barcelona’ was purchased direct from Louella Pigeon World at the age of 11 years. He was paired to his own daughter the brilliant stock hen ‘Lady Wegan’ herself a breeder of a 1st and 2 x 2nd national winners. This cock was paired to a double granddaughter of De Schlangen Barcelona a winner of the Dutch National Barcelona race with 6812 birds flying 700 miles who also won 4th international from an entry of 28,128 birds he scored 3 times at the distance. These birds are all Van der Wegan Aarden from Louella. A son from the above pair is the sire of ‘Louella Lady Helen’ and is also sire of the winners of 8th and 13th west section SNFC Clermont and 14th west section SNFC Alencon. Along with 6 other birds to score in the SNFC and 9 x 1st club and 5 x 1st west section federation winners. ‘Louella Jenna’ is bred from another son of the base cock when paired to ‘The Spin Hen’ a gift from Michael Massarella and very inbred to the Kuyper Brothers base pair ‘Zoon Spin’ and ‘Zuster Pau’. This pair are the sire and dam of 12 birds to score in the SNFC including ‘Louella Jamie Boy’ who is also a SNFC Silver Award winner his positions are as follows; 1st section E 5th open SNFC Clermont, 18th section E 83rd open Alencon, 9th section E 48th open SNFC Alencon. As a matter of interest this stock pair is also sire and dam to 14 x 1st club winners and 7 x 1st west section winners. Our congratulations go to Walter on his 4th SNFC Silver Award win and wish him all the best for the future.
Tom McLeod of Tranent with our son Kevin Murphy
Walter Boswell of Hamilton
A little girl and her older brother were visiting their grandfather's farm. The older brother decided to play a trick on his younger sister. He told her that he discovered a man-eating chicken. The girl was frightened, and ran inside in fear. Then the older brother heard his little sister scream. He ran inside immediately. She was screaming at their grandfather, who was chowing down on a plate of fried chicken. "What is it?" he asked. The sister turned to him in fear and said," It- it's- IT'S A MAN EATING CHICKEN!!!"
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