Three Tips to Keep Your Pigeons Racing Using the Natural System
Tip 1– Hen and Cock Pairing
If you have a hen and cock showing signs of pairing, separate the two for a couple of days before race day. Then, just prior to crating them, put them together for about thirty to forty minutes. This separation will disrupt the hen’s cycle and delay the laying process.
Another thing this separation will do is increase the birds’ desire for each other. When you let them see each other for a few minutes before basketing, this will strengthen their bonding and increase their desire for home. Absence makes the heart grow fonder!
Tip 2—At the Beginning of Nesting
If you have a pair that is starting to nest, remove either the hen or cock, preferably the hen. Allow the cock to take another mate, and then, remove that mate.
When the day of shipping arrives, permit all three to be together for about 20 to 30 minutes. Watch for signs that the hens will start to battle and remove them quickly so they don’t lose form. Then, crate and ship all three to the race. This tip will work to motivate the pigeons and can be used throughout the season.
Tip 3—Increase the Nest Size
If you have a pair of racing pigeons that has laid and is sitting for several days, slip another egg into the nest every other day until they’re sitting on about five or six eggs. Next, the night before basketing, take the male pigeon and put him in a spare cage or box so he is can’t see his nest, his mate or his loft.
The hen won’t notice that the cock isn’t there until the following day when it’s his turn to take care of the nest. Without the cock there to take his turn, the hen will become reluctant to eat or leave the nest, this reluctance increased by the additional eggs. In fact, you may need to physically remove her and put her in a separate box so she will eat and drink.
When you have the female boxed for eating and drinking, allow the cock to return to his loft. Seeing his nest unprotected, he will rush to take his turn on the eggs. Allow him to next for a few minutes. Then, remove him before allowing his mate to return back to the loft.
Do this just prior to shipping them to race. What this will do is cause the birds to be concerned about their responsibility for the nested eggs and both will race with vigor and determination to quickly return home to care for their eggs.