Tuesday, October 11, 2011

No Futurity Race

There will be no Futurity Race for me this year.  I had only one of my 10 futurity birds left.  For some reason, this was a particularly high loss season.  She had been out 165 miles when I lost all of the remaining futurities so I held her back and just gave her deep training drops along with the rest.  On her 4th drop from 64 miles, she did not come home.  That was Sunday.  On Monday evening, while driving home on the divided highway I saw a dead bird - a pigeon!  It had to be a pigeon the size and color were right and there's not a lot of pigeons in the suburbs so it stood out (still amazing that I noticed it).  I pulled over and walked back.  Yup!  A pigeon wearing the same blue race bands I use.  I grabbed it's foot and pulled it back from the road to flip it over (I can't imagine what the passing cars thought of my actions).  Sure enough, it was my last futurity bird.  What a strange thing!

Saturday, September 17, 2011

It was the best of times, it was the worst of times.

It's been busy.  I missed a real high point.  After 5 seasons of Young Bird Racing, I finally won! 


National Database-1        EVANSVILLE RACING PIGEON CLUB         09/17/11-12:44
                                   Mt. Vernon IN
                                 Weekly Race Report                      Page 1
                             Open and Junior Category
Name: FT. CAMPBELL 1              Young Bird Race             Flown: 08/31/2011

Release(A): 07:00  Birds: 188  Lofts: 8            Station: FT. CAMPBKY (0201)
Weather (Rel) PC, SE 5, 60 deg  (Arr) PC, SE 7, 80 deg


POS NAME          BAND NUMBER        CLR  X ARRIVAL   MILES   TOWIN      YPM  WS Cus Pts  NDB Std Pts
  1 THREET ROB/30 5311   AU 11 EVV   BB   H 08:46:02  91.384  00.00 1516.795    187         97  
  2 THREET ROBERT 5393   AU 11 EVV   GRIZ H 08:46:14   2/30   00.12 1513.892    186         95  
  3 THREET ROBERT 5324   AU 11 EVV   BLK  H 08:46:25   3/30   00.22 1511.355    185         92  
  4 HELFRICH S/30 11323  AU 11 HELF  BB     08:48:19  92.274  01.14 1499.335    184         89  
  5 HELFRICH STEV 11306  AU 11 HELF  BC     08:48:20   2/30   01.15 1499.104    183         87  
  6 HELFRICH STEV 11310  AU 11 HELF  BCWF   08:48:20   3/30   01.15 1499.104    182         84  
  7 HELFRICH STEV 11327  AU 11 HELF  BB     08:48:20   4/30   01.15 1499.104    181         81  
  8 HELFRICH STEV 11307  AU 11 HELF  BC     08:48:21   5/30   01.16 1498.874    180         79  
  9 HELFRICH STEV 11329  AU 11 HELF  BC     08:48:22   6/30   01.17 1498.643    179         76  
 10 HELFRICH STEV 11390  AU 11 HELF  BC     08:48:27   7/30   01.22 1497.492    178         73  
 11 HELFRICH STEV 11321  AU 11 HELF  BC     08:48:33   8/30   01.28 1496.112    177         71  
 12 HELFRICH STEV 11360  AU 11 HELF  RC     08:48:48   9/30   01.43 1492.674    176         68  
 13 HELFRICH STEV 11366  AU 11 HELF  BB     08:48:53  10/30   01.48 1491.532    175         65  
 14 HELFRICH STEV 11328  AU 11 HELF  QUAL   08:49:05  11/30   02.00 1488.797    174         63  
 15 HELFRICH STEV 11314  AU 11 HELF  BB     08:49:06  12/30   02.01 1488.570    173         60  
 16 HELFRICH STEV 11402  AU 11 HELF  BBWF   08:49:06  13/30   02.01 1488.570    172         57  
 17 HELFRICH STEV 11394  AU 11 HELF  BKSP   08:49:09  14/30   02.04 1487.888    171         55  
 18 HELFRICH STEV 11401  AU 11 HELF  BCSP   08:49:11  15/30   02.06 1487.434    170         52  
 19 HELFRICH STEV 11311  AU 11 HELF  BB     08:49:14  16/30   02.09 1486.753    169         49  
--------------------------------- Above are 10 percent -------------------------
The next race - no so good.  70th place and I dropped 7 birds (out of 31). 
We flew the first two on Wednesdays to avoid dove season opening weekend. 
I picked up 2 birds just in time for race 3. I held back the two stragglers and sent
24 birds.  I only got back 8 race day!  So, at the end of the day I now had 10 birds.
I had 31 only four days earlier.  Very depressing.  I did get several birds in the top 
10% and 20% though.

National Database-1        EVANSVILLE RACING PIGEON CLUB         09/17/11-12:49
                                    Haubstadt IN
                                 Weekly Race Report                      Page 1
                             Open and Junior Category
Name: COLUMBIA 5                  Young Bird Race             Flown: 09/10/2011

Release(A): 07:00  Birds: 159  Lofts: 8           Station: COLUMBIA, TN (0203)
Weather (Rel) PC, Calm, 52 deg  (Arr) Cloudy, WSW-5, 75 deg


POS NAME          BAND NUMBER        CLR  X ARRIVAL   MILES   TOWIN      YPM  WS Cus Pts  NDB Std Pts
  1 SIMPSON DON/8 4434   AU 11 EVV   BKCK H 10:57:52  179.426 00.00 1327.593    316         97  
  2 SIMPSON DON   4430   AU 11 EVV   BLCK C 11:01:08   2/8    03.16 1309.527    314         94  
  3 GOODWIN DO/30 4561   AU 11 EVV   BC   H 10:50:01  169.333 05.32 1295.631    312         91  
  4 HELFRICH S/30 11307  AU 11 HELF  BC     10:50:49  167.769 08.24 1279.229    310         87  
  5 GOODWIN DON   4596   AU 11 EVV   BBWF H 10:54:57   2/30   10.28 1268.427    308         84  
  6 SIMPSON DEB/6 4485   AU 11 EVV   BLCK H 11:10:33  179.426 12.41 1260.363    306         81  
  7 SIMPSON DEBBI 4483   AU 11 EVV   BLCK H 11:10:35   2/6    12.42 1260.220    304         78  
  8 THREET ROB/24 5323   AU 11 EVV   BB   C 10:58:39  167.476 16.37 1235.086    302         75  
  9 HELFRICH M/30 4859   AU 11 EVV   BC   C 11:03:58  167.945 21.18 1211.598    300         72  
 10 HELFRICH STEV 11306  AU 11 HELF  BC     11:03:53   2/30   21.28 1210.692    298         69  
 11 HELFRICH MARK 4114   AU 11 EVV   BB   C 11:04:10   2/30   21.30 1210.606    296         65  
 12 HELFRICH STEV 11315  AU 11 HELF  BBWF   11:03:56   3/30   21.31 1210.444    294         62  
 13 HELFRICH MARK 4802   AU 11 EVV   RB   C 11:04:58   3/30   22.18 1206.652    292         59  
 14 BUTCH GARR/15 4314   AU 11 EVV        H 11:02:17  165.270 23.10 1200.609    290         56  
 15 BUTCH GARRISO 4324   AU 11 EVV        H 11:07:23   2/15   28.17 1175.801    288         53  
 16 SIMPSON DEBBI 4480   AU 11 EVV   BLCK H 11:33:48   3/6    35.55 1153.361    286         50  
--------------------------------- Above are 10 percent -------------------------
 17 SIMPSON DON   4040   AU 11 EVV   BLCK C 11:33:50   3/8    35.57 1153.220    284         47  
 18 SIMPSON DEBBI 4482   AU 11 EVV   BB   C 11:33:52   4/6    36.00 1153.045    282         43  
 19 SIMPSON DON   4041   AU 11 EVV   BLCK H 11:33:55   4/8    36.03 1152.834    280         40  
 20 SIMPSON DEBBI 4050   AU 11 EVV   GRIZ C 11:33:58   5/6    36.06 1152.631    278         37  
 21 SIMPSON DON   4435   AU 11 EVV   BLCK C 11:36:45   5/8    38.53 1141.039    276         34  
 22 GOODWIN DON   4509   AU 11 EVV   BB   H 11:24:04   3/30   39.34 1128.607    274         31  
 23 HELFRICH STEV 11314  AU 11 HELF  BB     11:23:12   4/30   40.47 1121.839    272         28  
 24 GARRISON B/16 4275   AU 11 EVV   RDCK H 11:37:03  163.374 01:00 1037.857    270         25  
 25 BUTCH GARRISO 4312   AU 11 EVV        H 11:47:32   3/15   01:08 1011.660    268         21  
 26 BUTCH GARRISO 4353   AU 11 EVV        H 11:47:32   4/15   01:08 1011.649    266         18  
 27 BUTCH GARRISO 4322   AU 11 EVV        H 11:47:35   5/15   01:08 1011.473    264         15  
 28 BUTCH GARRISO 4306   AU 11 EVV        H 11:47:37   6/15   01:08 1011.320    262         12  
 29 GARRISON BUTC 4218   AU 11 EVV   BLCK H 11:51:48   2/16   01:15  985.396    260          9  
 30 THREET ROBERT 5321   AU 11 EVV   BLK  C 12:12:15   2/24   01:30  943.969    258          6  
 31 THREET ROBERT 1229   AU 11 APA   BC   H 12:20:15   3/24   01:38  920.365    256          3  
 32 SIMPSON DON   4432   AU 11 EVV   BLCK H 12:43:44   6/8    01:45  918.702    254          0  
--------------------------------- Above are 20 percent -------------------------

Today's race was one of the best for my birds - not sure how I did against the
other but 9 out of 10 came in at the expected time.  I may only have 11 birds left,
but the are pretty good based on that race.  Gotta go - they are waiting on a bath
(since they can hear that I gave the breeding loft baths).  :-) 
 

Tuesday, August 30, 2011

Chicken Guts Made Me Late

Not my pic - Never got that close.
I left 15 minutes early for my usual pre-work training drop of 42 miles.  Tyson has a chicken processing plant down that way.  Evidently, a truck full of "chicken guts" jack knifed and closed the south-bound parkway down.  Another truck, trying to get around, somehow jack-knifed and closed the north-bound lanes.  So much truck traffic was being diverted off onto the nearest exit - that pretty soon two trucks wrecked on the exit and they closed THAT exit down.  What a mess!

Saturday, August 27, 2011

Jumping up another 22 miles

I woke up at 4:30am.  "Might as well get the birds down the road", I thought.  I love it that time of morning.  It was cool.  I even saw my breath when I first exhaled on the back deck.  Your eyes are so completely dark adjusted it seems like there are so many more stars.  I get my preview of the winter constellation, Orion, rising over the trees.  I'm pretty sure that out of place star west of Taurus is Jupiter - unless my eyes are so dark adjusted that Saturn seems that bright (unlikely). 

The birds are easy to load.  And very quiet - except one: Ug! That ugly common has trapped back in!  I took him off 42 miles and he came back two days later after (as far as I know) only being in the loft one day.  Impressive homing instinct for a mature, untrained common barn pigeon.  Let's see if he can come back from 64 miles.

I was early.  The site is higher so just as I got there the elevation rose so that the sun rose.  I would give it another 12 minutes while the birds settled.  I gave the common a 12 minute head start.  ;-)  When I released them, they circled only once and then headed on an exact bearing for home.  Sixteen beat me home.  According to the weather channel, they had a 2mph head wind and still covered 64 miles in 67 minutes.  (Wow! Please do that in a race sometime!)  The other half was WAY out.  My theory is these guys were so fast the others wore out trying to keep up and must've set down to rest because they have been coming in all together from 42 miles (last 3 of 5 drops anyway).

Surprises - 5391, the son of 306, came in 3rd seconds behind the first two (the first 15 all clocked in within 2 minutes.  306 was the son of a white show racer and my slowest but very loyal 500 mile bird.  It'll be interesting to see how he does in races.

Thursday, August 25, 2011

Lookin much better from 42 miles

My favorite drop
racing pigeons against sunrise
Yesterday's time was really good.  Today's was slower but they had a pretty good head wind and even then it was okay - they were on time anyway.  The best part - 27 of 30 clocked in on time!  I check the loft and I had 31 last night.  HOWEVER, 2 of them were without race bands which means they weren't here Sunday when I banded them all.  After I released them, I called and the loft manager said there was already one eating.  A straggler had come in - a futurity.  Oh well.  This was the 4th drop from 42 miles.  Tomorrow makes 5 drops (as I want them to break this early).  This weekend the weather is looking good for 2 drops from 64 miles.  Then, if I can (and the weather is looking like I can), I will drop them from 42 miles again Monday & Tuesday (boxing night).  I like to get them a good stretch before shipping.

Wednesday, August 24, 2011

Meh

Been too depressed by results to post.  This has been the worst batch ever.  I've begun to wonder if they've gotten respiratory infections again.  I dropped 34 birds from 42 miles and only got 15 back after 2 and a half hours.  By dusk I had 27.  In the morning I had picked up 3 (I think) but it these came in after I closed the loft and it looked like a raccoon got one of them. 

I wrote down the numbers of the birds that clocked in mostly together more than an hour late - the rest were way out and all over the place.  I figured the 2nd half of stragglers pulled these guys down SO I basketed them separately for a separate release.  When I release the "fast" birds - they would not leave the site.  They kept circling and coming back.  After nearly 20 minutes, as risk for being late for work, I released the "slow" birds.  They quickly found the others and together they all went straight home and clocked in pretty on time.  Weird.

This morning I had 30 birds in the loft.  10 of my 12 blacks (dropped Picard).   I dropped both pretty tortoise grizzles from Alaska.  That makes at least half the Alaska birds.  These guys are kitting tightly and took off in a hurry towards home.  It was their 4th drop from 42 miles.  About 2 miles north, they crossed in front of me coming back heading straight west  from the east.  *sigh*  (They should be going straight NNW).  Oh well.  I hope to get them down there tomorrow and Friday and then jump them up to 64 miles Sat & Sun.  The race is only 92 miles next Wednesday so they should be fine.

Monday, August 15, 2011

Looking Good at 24 miles!

The corn was much taller than previous years at this drop.  I am a couple of weeks later than usual.  There are 36 that are doing well and another 2-3 that are struggling.  I was worried I'd be able to get done with training but it looks really good.  If the weather does ok - I'll be at 42 miles by Friday - an entire week before shipping for the first race.  I hope to get them out 64 miles before that (and maybe one drop at 82 miles if we're really lucky (and I'm not too sleepy)).

I finally remembered to turn on my camera before releasing!  :-)