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More good birds?

The search for good birds.

Vandenabeele practises A I. That is to say, at his pigeons.

A I stands for Artificial Insemination

A lot of work, but it pays well.
When Willem de Bruijn once asked him how many babies he could grow from a single cock in one year he said: "As many as I want."


It was reminiscent of what I saw long ago, at  v d Pol from Goirle.

Japanese Kayama wanted to buy babies of his National winner of St. Vincent.
When we were there he showed us about 20 babies, all about four weeks old.
"Take your pick ," said the butcher.
"Yes, but I just want babies of your National winner", Mr Kayama said.

"Those are all of my St. Vincent," said Chris.
The eyes of the Japanese became even narrower than they already were .

Artificial insemination?
Or using cocks as so called bulls?  
This shows another perspective on the absurd amounts that some pay for pigeons today. Of course say 150,000 euros for ONE single pigeon is insane.

But you can also see it with a commercial purpose.
A good cock that has a reputation offers great opportunities financially.

I once had such a bird. When it became infertile a foreigner wanted it. As a collectors item he said. I was so stupid as to give him the bird.

The new owner must have been a better fancier than me and my friends because in his loft it became fertile again.

And he sold scores of babies for $ 7,500 each.

A lot of money, but that seems the price that some are willing to pay these days.

Thirty babies of one cock in one year that can be sold for 6,000 totalizes 120,000 euros! If fanciers can breed more that is a nice bonus.

So men like Eyerkamp and others know what they are doing when paying so much money for a super bird. With good propaganda even a bird that was bought for 150,000 euros can be a good investment for shrewd businessmen.

These huge amounts are usually paid for pigeons that have proven something.

It makes sense if the birds are meant for business.

But I do not understand those people that pay so much for babies.

Super birds are no guarantee, but with proven record birds you have chances.

Chances to get good children of birds that have not proven anything yet are much smaller. Almost nil!  

Moreover youngsters of babies that you bought are not interesting for business either.


More than 500 birds Heremans auctioned.

There is a saying that no one can breed ONE super in every ten birds.

There are lots of fanciers that breed 100 babies per year. 

100 Babies per year means 400 babies in four years" time. So one per ten would be 40 good ones. Who knows a fancier who has "only" ten good birds?   

Lets give Leo the benefit of the doubt. Lets assume that he is different. That he is a

miracle man who can breed TWO good ones in every 10. That means 100 good birds from the 500 he sold or' 400 bad ones!

Then you should see the comment that was made on EVERY single bird in the auction. Can you blame the auctioneer? No you cannot. He does his job. And his job is to try and rob people from their money.

Of course good luck is also important.

Auctions do not differ very much from a lottery. Apart from the crazy price of the tickets.


Any good? Chances are less than 10 percent!


On the other hand the man of 4 million deserves admiration.

When I was there for the first time ten years ago I thought I was the first foreigner to be on the premises. But German W Roeper was there before.

We belonged to the very few that realized how good these birds were.

And now, ten years later, the whole world knows him and want his pigeons.
You can also be a sport and admire him for that.

He had not "bought" his fame by means of expensive advertisements in foreign papers. His birds are responsible for his fame.



Is artificial insemination the future? Businesswise maybe. As for more quality birds I have my doubts. There are many that have been practicing it for years. But they did not find themselves better racers with more good birds later on.

Talking about Super birds we come to the national Aces in Belgium.

A "National" Ace is supposed to be the best of the nation. One would say only one can be the best but in Belgium are MANY fanciers that claim to have a National Ace. The reason is there are competitions of all kinds.
- National Acepigeon KBDB. (In fact the only correct one).
- National Ace Ave Regina. 
- National Ace pigeon BDS.
- National Ace LCB.
- National Ace "Duivenkrant" ( a pigeons newspaper).
- And more.
This can only be true in pigeon sport. I am waiting for the first Chinese who take each other to court, since they both claim to have the National Ace.  


If you compare race results of today with those of some decades ago the difference is enormous.

This year we had this race from Orleans, 450 kilometers.

It lasted 7 minutes. That means that 7 minutes after the first arrival 25% of the birds were home.

Take also May 11th. 25.600 birds of my province were released together.

Some decades ago there were over 100,000 birds, but this is still a nice amount.

After nine minutes this race was over. My second nominated bird arrived together with the first nominated but it sat on the roof for one minute.

One minute is not real long. But it was classified 600 places behind its loftmate.


In the early 90-ies Mr S, a trader from Japan, asked my advice.

He wanted to buy birds from a fancier that was well known here but not in Japan.

I advised him to buy from Vandenabeele. His star was rising then, his pigeons were still affordable and I bought a round of young birds from Vandenabeele.
Later he complained he should not have listened to me. He was not able to sell these birds. "Are they that bad? " I asked. That was not it.

He could not sell because no one had ever heard of Vandenabeele.
Later on his star rose also in Japan, his pigeons became more expensive, but then it was too late for Mr S. He had eliminated those birds, his wife had made soup of them. It was the last meal of them both. She ran away!

How stupid he was.

Smart men do not tell women too much, especially not their own.