Quest for TEXAN PIONEERS.....

Discussion in 'Pigeons and Doves' started by ElizabethAz, Aug 18, 2013.

  1. ElizabethAz

    ElizabethAz Out Of The Brooder

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    Az
    I have been thinking about adding pigeons to the farm, but I'm really not interested in the "fooffy" show types. I really love heritage breeds, and after doing some searching I found that i really like the Texas pioneers. But... Because they are a utility breed no one seems to have them. And the "show" birds are (according to my research) notoriously infertile.. Apparently a desirable trait to sabotage anyone looking to breed them for "squabbling".. Also to me the new fangled show birds are a hideous abomination. They are bred to look very un-natural, it looks almost painful for them to stand the way they do!

    Another frustration I don't get... So many people complain that the giant Utility birds are going the way of the dodo and need more breeders, but yet... The "fanciers" don't want them marketed for their original purpose. Meat! They want to 'change' them into show birds...who shows pigeons other than hard core fanciers? heck, Most people with chickens don't show them or go out of their way to buy quality breeders, OR breed their exsisting birds to the breed standard!

    And yet, many breeds of poultry, cattle, swine, and equines have been saved by the standard they were originally bred for. Whats the taboo with pigeons?? I have been growing increasingly frustrated with the garbage, cold shoulders, and overall snobbery of pigeon hobbiests. People with utility birds hide it, out of fear of being labeled as "one of those people" that eat their birds. It would be so much nicer to purchase utility birds from small timers who know their birds, and take pride in breeding them for their meat quality rather than plumage! And save future breeders the hassle of having to go through large commercial farms that raise them in battery and only care about nickle and diming you to death! More breeders = more birds = the preservation of the breed!

    Is anyone in Arizona, or the southwest still breeding QUALITY birds that aren't reproductively defunct?? I want good stock that is capable of owning up to their name sake.
     
  2. Hokum Coco

    Hokum Coco Overrun With Chickens

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    First I heard of Texas Pioneer breed.
    Good luck on your quest.
     
  3. Print Tippler

    Print Tippler Out Of The Brooder

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    All pigeon breeds have an heritage. There are more pigeon breed types than just show type and utility types. There are also performance oriented types. Show birds are not notoriously infertile by any means. The breeds want fertile birds so they can breed more... They are not trying to ruin there breed to prevent squbing... Texan pioneers are a fancy breed or else it would just be a common rock pigeon. They are not all bred to you very un-natural. You should google wild exotic pigeons and doves and compare how they look. There are many types of fruit pigeons/dove with amazing colors along with many of kings of wild pigeons and doves." Stand the way they do" there are well over 300 breeds of domestic pigeons and they don't all stand the same... The forum "pigeon talk" doesn't allow meat talk because they are ran by extremists but they don't represent everyone. Again the higher ups on pigeon talk and people with some influence are very extreme. I've never heard an argument made that pigeons were originally kept for meat. I don't think that was originally the idea. Probably homing, showing looks/ colors, and how they fly like high flyers, divers, tumblers, etc. squabing utility breeds were made from other breeds of pigeons. Human breeding have made them larger with smaller wings and they have very limited flying capability. What I'm getting at is that they are very unnatural to the fact they can hardly get off the ground really. If you want something pretty natural you should go for feral pigeons, homing pigeons, tipplers. They are arguably much more natural than any utility breed. Again non-utility breeds are not reproductively defunct as then the breed wouldn't continue. I don't know where you got that idea. I can't speak from first hand experience but I believe it is not economical or worth it to breed pigeons for meat. That may be why you are having a hard time finding people and why it's dying off while there still are meat chickens. Although pigeons can be considered poultry they are the only ones as far as I'm aware of that can actually get up in to air and really fly around, except for some, and I do stress the some, show breeds and I would think all utility breeds which are bred for unnaturally shorter smaller wings because you do eat the wing.

    Natural pigeon
    [​IMG]

    Unnatural, these come in black also just couldn't find a good picture
    [​IMG]

    I could go on and on comparing natural pigeons to unnatural showing some unnatural pigeons look very amazing with crests and white eyes and amazing colors while some some nautical ones look dull and "normal"
     
  4. larrylofts

    larrylofts Chillin' With My Peeps

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    texas pioneers where devloped in the fifties by del james not a old breed first reconized by npa early sixties the reason they where developed a breed that could be sexed at day one fast produceing birds that had uniform size at the start there was just one color now there are afew more blacks blues reds and the orignals ashreds the cocks are white with sprinkleing of color feathers the show birds had to fit into the standards weight range or where not allowed to show to big to small willis mahffey took over the breeds promotion until his death now the breed has its ups and downs i know that the secarty of a club is the life line of the breeds promotion and progress i know bobby brodie the club sec. and can tell you he loves the breed but like me and so many others has other things to care for and like me getting older amd slowing down there are some good breeders ouy there that keep production records on there birds by the way in france they have shows with oveer 400 pioneers recently there was someone on here that claim he had a pair of pioneers one look and they were both hens thet are auto sex can tell from day one there sex two birds same color same sex i have judge the pioneers at there main breed shows they are a great breed todays world people that use to open up about birds are a little more cauitious in there communcations do not give up trying [email protected] club site there are a few contact listed
     
  5. ElizabethAz

    ElizabethAz Out Of The Brooder

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    Az
    Yeah, I have seen fruit doves and the like. By "natural" I was referring to their stance. Having a bird with its back arched and head touching its tail, or standing so up right it looks like its leaning forward to catch its balance is not a look or form I want in my birds.

    I actually do like the feral homers because they are more robust than the racing homers (who look more like doves)...which is why I have a few lol. Plumage color doesn't draw too big of an appeal to me, it's about shape. And history. You are right that the utility birds were created from other breeds... Namely what was most commonly available which were homers and message types. They were created during times of famine (like the great depression for example) to provide cost effective, and plentiful meals. Many of the birds that managed to escape helped to form the feral populations we now know today.

    I know that they are "less natural" than homers or tipplers in that they don't fly well. But the historical birds have less extreme bends and twists in their conformation compared to modern show types that are shown as Utility class birds. The kings I think are a good example. The Utility bird looks like a giant homer, the show bird is bred to stand like a poised show Moundane making them Look like a top heavy rubber Duckie standing on tip toes lol. It's almost cartoonish. The Texans are in the pigeon world what the californian x new Zealand cross rabbits are to homesteaders. But in recent years/ pictures the breed is changing. Old pictures show a large, naturally poised bird. Recent pictures show a bird poised like the rubber duck tipping forward. It seems that the Utility Birds are all following the same strange poise...for what purpose I don't understand.

    Texans and Kings are being used more and more in show, but compared to fancy fooffy crests and what not, they look cartoonish and are not a very popular show bird. As a marketed meat bird however, I think they would do far better. More people I think WOULD raise them if there was a stronger effort to bring up their potential. A pair of birds can produce up to 12 squabb/ year and each squab is at a mature butcher weight in 30days.. Chickens take 6 months! Now you don't get eggs. But if you want a good deal of meat for your family, pigeons to me seem more economical. The utility birds are nearly "flightless" and while they still need room..can be kept even in your garage. They have a very soft coo and don't crow, so no troubling your neighbors. The meat according to several studies was found to be far better / more digestible than commercially raised poultry. And the droppings can be used just like chicken poo as fertilizer in your garden. For foraging, they are lighter than most chickens, do less damage to garden beds with scratching, and have a natural 'homing ability' if your chicken gets scared/chased off by a predator he is not coming back. A good pigeon will.

    I eat eggs only on occasion (which is why I raise bantams), and I know some people who don't eat them at all but like raising their own poultry for meat. There are plenty of people who I think would also consider raising utility birds over other traditional poultry if they KNEW about the benefits, and had more support getting started.
     
  6. kswaterfowl

    kswaterfowl Chillin' With My Peeps

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    You can make sex linked pigeons by breeding reds to blues. I am not 100% sure on specifics, but use to do it with our Old German Owls. I would put a red bar male over a blue bar female (I think) and hatched red males and blue females. Its been a while since I've done that, but it worked every time. After you breed pigeons long enough, they are fairly easy to sex by sight.
     
  7. larrylofts

    larrylofts Chillin' With My Peeps

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    all pigeons came from the feral pigeon man change them for his purpose to look at fly long distances back home or eat doves are not pigeons and pigeons are not doves there are sex linked mateings that you can no what sex they are when they get there color buy when older you have to know that auto sex pioneers you can look and tell by the color of adults and down length at hatching
     
  8. ElizabethAz

    ElizabethAz Out Of The Brooder

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    Az
    Well...no, actually a "Feral" bird or animal is any domesticated animal that is intentionally or unintentionally released into the wild and successfully forms a stable population.

    Most of all the "domestic" pigeons came from a wild pigeon called a "rock dove"
    http://www.google.com/search?client...1.5.0....0...1c.1.25.img..4.4.888.RAPpYyFSGEY

    Homing pigeons, racing pigeons, and many of the show types are bred to look more dove-like, and LESS robust because the sleek thin dove-like pigeons fly faster, and look better as a show bird. I think you thought I might have suggested that they are doves???
     
    Last edited: Aug 18, 2013
  9. Print Tippler

    Print Tippler Out Of The Brooder

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    Homing pigeons are not less robust or dove like compared to Ferals. It's the opposite... There are plenty domestic non utility pigeons bred to be healthy and vigorous. The flight I posted above has an large oil gland which is good thing as it protect feathers and also makes them shiny as an side effect. They also have bright red eye cere and bright red beaks, feet and legs showing that they have a large amount of healthy blood flow. I consider that a sign of robustness. What is "pigeon looking" and "dove looking" is subjective and semantics. The name "rock pigeon" and " rock dove" has been bounced around originally it ws dove then pigeon then back dove. Pigeons and doves as a whole group follow to specific rules when considering if something should be called a pigeon or a dove. They tend to call smaller ones doves but that is not always the case there are many exceptions. While its true that pigeons have a homing ability and can escape some predators most utility bird would probably not be able to do either. As far as it being economical I've heard it's really not economical to keep and breed chickens for meat and it would be cheaper just to buy them and slaughter them.

    I saw some post up white kings on the Phoenix craigslist about 2 weeks ago for $30 a bird. You could try contacting the Arizona Modena club to find some birds I also believe they hold a show every year at the end of the year in camp verde.
     
  10. Print Tippler

    Print Tippler Out Of The Brooder

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