FANTASQUE (Nice history)

The pigeon picture at the top represent one of my best racing homer of all time. He has had 20 years old on February the 29, 2012. The photo has been taken the same day! This racing homer cock has been a fantastic racing homer for me. He was born in the same nest he now live in. Already at the age of 16-17 days, no one would impress him. When I touched him he was fighting me what he has always done. Later on, I Learned it was his own way to show his love for me. He was so “whimsical” that I gave him this name(in French: Fantasque). First nest at the top when I inter in the loft. At the age of 25 days, at his winning time I changed it to the young bird loft. He made all races in 1992 up to Ottawa (300 miles from Québec). He was not always in the first group to come back at home but his average speed of flight has always been very good. He was specially good in the bad weather races. In one race in particular, most birds were very late because of the bad temperature but he was home in a very good time. During the Fall of 1992, I put him in the old bird loft. He went immediately to the nest he was born in and stayed there all his life, never searching or fighting for any other nest . When I was interring the loft, his favorite place was on my left shoulder. He stayed there until I gave him his favorite feed: peanuts.. He was in the race again the following years until I decided to keep it in my breeding program. To-day, I have to feed him in his nest in a coffee cup. He has difficulties to see his feed close to him. But he still raise one babies (not from his own as he his no longer fertile but he doesn't know....LOL..) Yesterday, I put his adopted baby on the floor. I feed him and right after his meal, went on to the floor to feed his babies. He was immediately joined by 3 or 4 other babies on the floor and feed them all as he has done all his life.. What a pet for me!  




















First of all, we should consider that feathers are composed of 91% of proteins, 1.3% fat and 7.9% water.


Starting from there, our pigeons need a lot of proteins. I have seen many breeders that believe in 13-14% proteins in the pigeon diet for the breeding period is correct but it is definitely not enough for the babies and also for their feathers.  18%, 3 weeks before breeding, all the breeding time and also at the winning time (until the first molt is finished) is the most appropriate quantity. Keratin is also necessary. : (Keratins are special proteins that are built inside the body using amino acids as the foundations. The process of making the Keratin protein for feathers is a demanding and inefficient one, so forming the perfect feather without correct nutrients is very difficult - birds on seed and vegetable diets will struggle.)


So you also need to give your birds some amino acids and minerals when they are building their first feathers. Aminovit, Ecol-Tonic, Omega Plus, Mega Mins, etc, are good ones but there are many more. (There are some 22 amino acids that are called essential. This means that the pigeon cannot make these amino acids from other amino acids so they must be in the diet.) Vitamins once a week is also recommended.


Finally, you need to give your birds weekly baths with bath salts or similar product to give your birds clean, soft and supple feathers.

As you can see, it is not a one week preparation that will give your birds nice feathers; it is a harmonious whole that might produce those appropriate feathers. To all that, the quality of the feathers of the parents may also be taken into account! 


Hope this answer your question.




 Good Feather By Dr. Rob Marshall, B.V.Sc, M.A.V.Sc. .
The importance of good feathering as a reflection of the quality of a pigeon can never be overemphasised. For every fancier the quality of the feather is a very good and immediate indication as to the quality of the pigeon. A good quality feather is the foundation stone for breeding the champion pigeon and a pigeon with poor feathers should never be considered for stock because good feathering is a reflection of both good breeding and good health.

The healthy feather is silky, flexible, strong and waterproof. These features are all important for efficient flight. The high oil content of the healthy feather gives it the silky feel. The silkier the feather the greater the lift due to the streamlining effect required for efficient flight. The dry feather we get with many illnesses means that there is less streamlining (over the body and wing) and more drag with a subsequent loss of lift and less efficient flight. More energy is required causing the bird to tire more quickly. The dry feather being less flexible means that the twisting motion of the end flights that gives forward thrust is lessened, which results in a slower bird. The dry feather is brittle and lacks the strength of the silky feather, wearing out by the time the long races, when flying efficiency is needed most. Dry feathers lack the waterproofing qualities of the oil laden silky feather and flying therefore becomes more difficult in wet weather.

The feathers of the racing pigeon in top form are tight and silky. The aerodynamics are further improved by the feathers covering the body. These contour feathers of the body and the coverts over the wing and tail feathers of the bird in top form overlap each other very tightly to create a very smooth surface. We describe such a bird as having "tight" feather. During flight this very tight feather allows the moving air to flow smoothly and quickly over the body and wing surfaces in what we call "streamlines". "Streamlining" gives "lift" to the flying pigeon and is one of the reasons why it can fly for sustained periods without tiring. For whatever reason (health or breeding), poor quality feathers fail to form the tight smooth surface required for "streamlining" and efficient flight. When the surface is not perfectly smooth the air does not flow smoothly across the surface and creates air eddies and bubbles of turbulence. Turbulence has the effect of slowing the airflow over the wing and body surfaces that increases the "drag" or "resistance" and reduces the "lift". Therefore the bird with poor feathers flies slowly and requires more effort to stay aloft. The end result is a bird that tires sooner. A good feather is essential for racing performance because it is the basis of "lift".












A long time saying is that more deaths in the pigeon lofts are due to incorrect feeding than to any other cause.


Nowaday, it has becomed more and more important. It doesn’t only imply the quality of the feed but ALSO the feed that should be given for each different period of the year: Rest period, pre-breeding period, breeding period and moulting period. At a minimum the need is two different feeds:  the rest and the breeding period! Feeding methods aren’t only for the feeds but also for all additives that should be added.



Feeding pigeon rules are: Feed only the best sead or pellets, feed regularly, feed intelligently and add all necessary additive that will help the pigeon immune system.









Feeding methods are very important! Proper food is one of the fundamental requirements of successful pigeon culture. This is true whether we raise fancy, racing, high-flying or utility pigeons. (re: W. Levy) Feeding methods should be done in a special way to get the best possible results in each case. Furthermore, it is very important to also change the feeds depending of the need ( rest period, activity period, breeding periods, moulting period, weaning periods) of the pigeons.  







Hi all modena friends, 

Dave asked me to write something on the care and what to feed and give to modenas through the molting and summer heat. 

First of all, I will talk first about the importance of a good feeding program for our modenas. 

Let’s have a quick look on general food: 

 It is recognized that pigeons can live and produce with inferior food, always the same one with 10-12% proteins months after months. I have heard in some occasions that some fanciers were giving corn and wheat only and they are happy with that! But…. If this is what you do and like it like that, this article is not for you.  

You know like for men, malnutrition is the basis of all disease…It is proven that in such cases, after a certain time, the human body starts to break down. It begins with colic, rashes, colds, earaches, upset stomachs, swollen glands and tonsils. Then, after many years, it may produce tooth decay, pimples, a faster need for eye glasses, arthritis, hypoglycaemia, heart attacks, strokes, diabetes and cancers.. Of course, in pigeons it is not the same situation. But be sure that fertility, health problems, bones structures and much more might happens, in the short or long time if your pigeons aren’t fed adequately. 

There have been long studies done by experts for the pigeon feed and important discovery have been achieve on them in the recent years.  

First of all, we must start with the idea that it is important that the food be of the best quality.

Good quality grain is a clean grain with low moisture content. Grains with high moisture and/or are dirty, dusty and unclean are more susceptible to fungus and bacterial germs and poisons than dry clean grain. The truth is that germs might be on and in the grains.

What to give as food depend of the season and the task our pigeons are doing. Giving the same kind of feed all year long is not at all recommended. In the breeding season as example, we should give our pigeon food that contain close to 18% proteins.

Let’s imagine a man that will keep the same food when he runs for a marathon as he does in his rest period! Unthinkable you would say, the same apply for our pigeons. Our pigeons aren’t at these extremes but, when they breed, feed their young’s or moult, it is very hard on them and they need different food. 

As it is now, time for weaning feed for our baby modenas, a high protein mixture is important. It should contain between 16 to 18% proteins. The key is to have a full balance of all essential food elements proteins (Amino-acids) fat, fiber, carbohydrates but it is important to also have a good balance of  all vitamins and minerals. In short, pigeon bones consists mainly of calcium and minerals. Muscles and feathers are mainly proteins. So to develop properly, it is a must for a young pigeon.

During this period, the food value should be: 16 to 18% Crude Proteins, 4.5% Crude Fat, 3.5% fibre, 25% carbohydrates. This mixture should be completed by a balance blend of all essentials Amino acid, vitamins, minerals, calcium, and amino acid.

For the moulting period, adult feed seed should contain: 16% proteins, 13% fat, 6% fibre, 26% carbohydrate.

The best food and additives are essential for a quick moult and the regrowth of quality new feathers. A quick moult indicates a healthy flock and a superior quality of feather reflects the correct feeding system. The best recipes provide the essential level and balance of amino acids needed for the formation of new feathers. Energy supplement provide the high levels and balance of protein, energy, vitamins and minerals required for a fast and successful moult.

For the off season feeding, especially in warm weather, it is recommended to use a low fat feed: 12% Crude Proteins, 5% Crude Fat, 5% Crude Fiber and 48% Carbohydrates.

Corn, wheat, barley, red milo, white milo, white millet are excellent for this period but you should use the good proportion what is not easy to do.

As you can see, if you want to make your own mixtures, it is really not an easy task. Many experience breeders prefer to do their own mixture. Then, it is highly recommended to use a grain calculator. There is one available on Internet at:



Grain Program


Mix your own feeds, with this Grain Composition program.Find out what Protein, Carbs, Water, Fat and Fibre you are feeding your birds.Just enter the amounts for each grain and the Compostions will appear.Please click on image for a better view.The File is 632 kbs in size


Here are some advises or remarks given by the best pigeon specialists in the world:

Re Dr. Walker: Poor nutrition will suppress the birds’ ability to resist disease, compromise growth, prolong recovery from exertion or illness and decrease reproductive performance. However, it should be remembered that what the astute fancier is aiming for is not simply to avoid any obvious health problem but rather he wants the best diet possible so that his birds are at their best condition.

In his book, Master of Breedings, Victor Vansalen writes: “Moulting and the way of moulting (or the moulting rhythm) is affected by several factors. The genetics constitution plays a role (fast or slow moulting), the time of breeding, the nest position and also the length of the day. The actual moulting is initiated and boosted by the hormone system in reaction of these stimuli. The moment a pigeon has begun the main moult (when moulting 6-7-8 and 9 long feathers) they only want to be quiet, most importantly the hen.

Loft conditions are also very important during this period. The loft should always be clean and dust free and must be well ventilated. In general a pigeon needs more oxygen in the moulting season than normal to allow the pigeon to produce blood. It is just natural that the quality and amount of fresh air allowed into the loft, will have an influence on the pigeons blood but pay attention, drafts in the loft should be avoided while trying to allow more fresh air in.

In the grains used in most seed mixes, the following vitamins are usually limiting, in addition to vitamin B12: vitamin A, riboflavin, niacin, folic acid, vitamin K and vitamin E. The most limiting amino acids in most seeds are lysine, methionine and tryptophane. While the minerals likely to be limiting are calcium, manganese, sodium and in some cases copper, zinc, iodine and selenium. So it is important to supply our pigeons with those additives.


A good pellets mixture can also prove its importance as right now, there are many food manufacturers that produce pellets of great quality with all the essential in them.


CONCLUSION: Please never forget that a poor diet means that birds are more prone to disease, poor feathering, and poor reproductive performance.

Written especially for the Midwest Modena Club by Raymond Julien, Canada.    












From Dr. Collin Walker: Poor nutrition will suppress the birds’ ability to resist disease, compromise growth, prolong recovery from exertion or illness and decrease reproductive performance. However, it should be remembered that what the astute fancier is aiming for is not simply to avoid any obvious health problem but rather he wants the best diet possible so that his birds are at their best competitively.

Riboflavin. Found in yeast. I recommend inactivated (sterile) dry yeast, eg ID Yeast, added to the seed after premoistening with a seed oil.






I am often asked what is the best feed to give to our

Let me tell you that the theory of nutrition for the
pigeon is really quite easy to understand.

The fancier must give:
• Grain for energy, protein and fiber.
• Minerals grits, powdered minerals, trace elements and
• Vitamins are usually given with trace elements and
extra amino-acids in the water.
• Extra energy, vitamins and protein can be given in
the form of special oils on the food when the adults
are feeding young.

But don't forget that to much of good things aren't appropriate!

This is as simple as that!

Raymond Julien,




See my complete article on the front page.  



Mainly vitamin E... Much more to come















FLAGYL ( Metronidazole)


  • Description: Metronidazole is in the 5-nitro-imidazole family of compounds and has been shown to have significant antiprotozoal activity.

  • Usage: Trichomoniasis.

  • Adverse reactions: Over dosage can result in central nervous system signs and death.

  • Dosage: 50 - 100 mg/bird daily for 4 - 6 days.

  • Comments: Not commonly used due to poor solubility in water for flock treatment.

































From CPFA:


Tracing Lost & Found Pigeons

Frequently Asked Questions; and our suggestions:

1. A pigeon with a band on its leg (s) has arrived at my home, what do I do?

Answer: If you can catch the bird, take all of the numbers and letters and perhaps insignias like
, down on a piece of paper, taking special care to obtain both the correct “year” and the two “letters” just before the NUMBERS.

Then, if the main letters are CPFA, you should contact our Band Secretary Bob Jones - Email:

If the main letters are CU, Please contact the Canadian Racing Pigeon Union -

There are many speciality Clubs for various Breeds and the band could bear the initials of any one of them. Some are not affiliated with CPFA but you may contact Bob Jones  for assistance in locating a representative for any of those Clubs
























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