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Buying meat pigeons from live poultry market?

Discussion in 'Pigeons and Doves' started by sydney13, Mar 17, 2013.

  1. sydney13

    sydney13 Chillin' With My Peeps

    Mar 11, 2010
    Massachusetts
    Hi, so about three months ago I got 2 white homer pigeons. Right now they are about six months old and today I noticed them displaying nesting behaviors for the first time. They both go into their nest box and coo and one has been moving its wings the same way my ducks and geese move their wings when they are nesting. One I am pretty sure is a male and it's pelvic bones are much closer together than the other ones. The other I can sort of fit a finger between but not quite. That one is the one which also has been moving its wings. Based on your experience does this sound like two males or a pair... Or is it too early to tell? They both coo about the same amount so that's why I was thinking I might have two males...
    My plan is to eventually breed these homers with some meat/utility pigeons. Id like to raise birds for squab but still be able to free fly them without them immediate being scooped off by hawks so that's why I was thinking of crossing the homers with a utility breed.
    There is an asian market I know of with live poultry and they sell what either looks like a homers or giant homers. I was thinking of buying two and if they work out and are heavy enough, breeding them with my white homers. I know it would be much better to start with birds from a breeder but I would have to pay for shipping again which would be too expensive. I was wondering if anyone had a guess if these birds would have been flown of not already? I have no idea where they come from before they get to the market but I would like to be able to let them out eventually without them flying off. So anyways do you think these birds would be ok? And does anyone have any idea of what sort of environment they come from?
    thanks for any answers!
     
  2. wildflights

    wildflights Out Of The Brooder

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    Mar 15, 2013
    The birds at the meat market are probably King pigeons. Kings can fly but they are kind of lazy and would rather not fly very far.

    I'm not sure what your trying to accomplish here. If you're raising for squab, they should be slaughtered before they are flying around in peril of hawks.

    Are you looking to get larger homers or smaller meat birds?
     
    Last edited: Mar 17, 2013
  3. sydney13

    sydney13 Chillin' With My Peeps

    Mar 11, 2010
    Massachusetts
    Thanks for the reply :)
    i forgot to mention that all their birds are blue so im thinking they must be some type of homer?
    and I guess what I'd like to do is have a bird that has enough meat to be worth raising but that is able to be relatively self sufficient by being able to free fly without being picked off by hawks instead of being confined all the time. As you can see though i haven't thought this through to well yet... I guess its sort of pointless to breed meat birds that can free fly seeing as the squab would be butchered before they leave the nest. In that case I would probably still be interested in buying the meat pigeons from the market but instead just breeding them with themselves rather than my white homers.
     
  4. Hokum Coco

    Hokum Coco Overrun With Chickens

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    Dec 6, 2012
    New Brunswick,Canada
    This is my experience in raising white homing pigeons:

    I bought one adult homer cock back in January 2012 that had never been out of the loft and never flown free. He raised 3 clutches of eggs in my loft and when I finally decided to try and loft fly him and released him May 2012 he returned to his original loft over 100 miles away and there he stays.

    I would never release an adult homer until it has raised at least 3 batches of young in my loft.

    Young squeaker birds a week or so and they are good to release.
    There are no hard and fast rules for homing pigeons is my experience. Some fanciers try clipping its primary flight feathers to impede his ability to fly (or even using dish soap on their feathers never tried that personally) and releasing him that some times helps or sometimes make him more prey worthy. It is a slippery slope.


    I have some adult birds in my loft now that I am sure you could never get to stay. They would either fly home or die trying. In most cases life as a prisoner is the only answer.

    In the late 1800 the most heroic recorded flight was from a pigeon that was released in Africa and took 55 days to get home in England. Traveling over 7,000 miles.

    That just seems unbelievable..
     
  5. wildflights

    wildflights Out Of The Brooder

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    Mar 15, 2013
    Hmmm, not sure what they are. There are some large homers. That would be interesting, if that's what they are. When mix and matching breeds, there's no guarantee that you won't end up with all the traits you're not looking for.

    I keep a breeding pair of Kings and sell the babies for pets (it pays a little toward the feed bill). Personally, I like to watch birds fly and the kings are lazy. They may fly to the roof of the shed or house when I force them to but they are not interested in giving one extra wing beat if they can help it. Makes for good pets (or meat birds). I sold all the rest of the King breeders to make room for rollers and homers.
     

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