Both Holland and Belgium are the countries where pigeon sport has its roots.
Pigeons from these countries are still considered to be superior and therefore Dutch and Belgian birds are exported to countries all over the world.
In the old days it was only good birds that mattered but later on ‘the holy pedigree’ made its entry into our sport.
Even the best pigeon in the world became worthless if it did not have a pedigree.
The more impressing that piece of paper was, the more valuable the bird, therefore people that wanted to sell birds had no other choice than to make pedigrees whether they liked it or not.
Foreigners buy a piece of paper and get a bird free Dutch and Belgian fanciers often laugh.
But since not every seller understands English, especially not the older generation, much comment is written in Dutch which often causes problems as you cannot expect every fancier in the world to understand Dutch.
Furthermore pigeon language is a special language with special terms that even native speakers do not understand.
Since Holland and Belgium are still the leading pigeon countries various English speaking fellow sportsmen have subscribed to a Dutch or Belgian pigeon magazine and sometimes wonder what words mean that they often come across.
Below you find words or terms that are often used in Dutch with a translation or explanation in English.
Terms that refer to pigeons and origin.
|Jonge duif||Baby, youngster (y.b.)|
|Oude duif||Old bird (o.b.)|
|Nestduif||Cock or hen raced natural.|
|Vroeg jong||Early bred|
|Zomer jong||Summer bred|
|Laat jong||Late bred|
Terms that refer to the colour of feathering and/or names of birds:
|Geschelpt,||Refers to colour > check, checked or checker.|
|Blauw (Blauwband)||Refers to colour > blue|
|Vaal of vos||Refers to colour > mealy, fox (kind of reddish)|
|Witpen||Refers to colour > white flight|
|Ooievaar||Refers to colour, ooievaar is Dutch for ‘stork’ so a kind of white or whitish bird.|
|Schalie||Refers to colour > Slaty (blue pencil).|
|Bont or Bonte||Refers to colour > Splash. A pigeon with a lot of white.|
|Sproet||Refers to colour > Bird with white speckles on the head.|
|Donkere||Refers to colour > Dark check.|
|Grijs||Refers to colour > grizzle|
|Geschift of Schift||Refers to colour > Pencil. Blue with dark spots.|
|Witoog||Refers to colour of the eye: Pigeon with glass eye.|
|Geeloog/geeloger||Name of bird mostly. Refers to colour of the eye ‘Yellow eye’.|
|Driebander||Refers to colour > Blue with 3 bands in the wing.|
|Licht(e)||Name of bird. Refers to colour mostly. Licht is hen > light checked. Lichte is cock > light checked.|
|Klein(e)||Name of bird referring to size (small) Klein refers to a hen. Kleine refers to a cock.|
|Grote||Name of bird > big cock. (so ‘Grote’ is opposite of ‘Kleine’).|
Terms that refers to racing or systems of racing:
|Leervlucht, lapvlucht||Toss, training|
|Een Hoksrace||One loft race.|
|Weduwschap||Widowhood or Double system, only cocks are raced.|
|Weduwnaar||Widowhood cock; bird raced on widowhood.|
|Weduwduivin||Hen of a widowhood cock that is not raced.|
|Dubbel Weduwschap||Double Widowhood, both cocks and hens are raced.|
|Op de deur||Youngsters raced with separated sexes. Loft consists of 2 sections, one for cocks and one for hens. After the race the door in between is open so that birds can mate.|
|Teletekstduif||Pigeon that was on TV as it won in first 10 of an NPO Race|
|Kopvlieger||Pigeon that is often on top.|
|Vooruit||Refers to a pigeon that won a 1st ahead of the rest.|
Terms that refer to Championships and competition.
|WHZB||Abbreviation for a ‘National’ Championship in Holland organised by pigeon magazine NPO which is in fact NOT National.|
|Gouden Duif||Championship organised by pigeon magazine De Duif. It is often referred to as National as well but this is not the case.|
|V.L.||(Former) so called World Championship organised by Food Firm Versele Laga.|
|Aangewezen||Nominated or pick birds.|
|Onaangewezen||Non nominated or non pick birds.|
|Algemeen/Generaal.||Over All Champion (young birds, old birds, nominated and non nominated)|
|Kring/CC||CC is an abbreviation for Concours Combination > Combine (competition of some clubs together)|
|Rayon||Competition of some Combines together.|
|Afdeling||Competition of some ‘Rayons’ together.|
|Coefficient||The result of a calculation for Championships. Prize x 100 divided by entry. ‘Coefficient 2’ is the same as 2nd prize against 100 birds, 4th prize against 200 birds, 20th prize against 1000 birds.|
|Fondspiegel||Championship Long Distance organised by pigeon magazine ‘De Fondkrant’.|
Terms that refer to racing
|NPO vlucht||Race organised by ‘Afdeling’ sometimes referred to as Semi National, supported by NPO.|
|ZLU||Abbreviation of Zuid Limburgse Union. A committee that organises 2 day Semi National races Long Distance.|
|Vitesse||Short distance. Mostly up to appr 250 to 300 kms.|
|Halve Fond||Middle Distance. From appr 250 to 500 kms.|
|Eendaags(e) Fond||One day long distance races (500 to 700 kms).|
|Overnacht||Two – day long distance races (800 to 1200 kms).|
|Dubbel(ing)||Double. For example prize won in Combine or Provincial.|
|Derby||Very special race.|
Terms that refer to organisation and press:
|NPO||Neerlands Postduiven Organisatie: Dutch National Homing Union.|
|KBDB||Koninklijke Belgische Duiven Bond: Belgian National Homing Union.|
|De Reisduif||Name of a Belgian pigeon magazine.|
|De Duif||“ “|
|Duifke Lacht||“ “ (Natural Breeding Station).|
|Vredesduif||Name of a former (!) Dutch pigeon magazine.|
|Fondkrant||Name of Dutch pigeon magazine that focusses on long distance.|
|Duivenkrant||Name of Belgian pigeon magazine. BDS Belgische Duiven Sport, Belgian pigeon magazine.|
|Het Spoor||Name of Dutch pigeon magazine.|
Good to remember
Tje, je, of Ke behind a propername refers to small size.
So duifJE or duifKE is LITTLE pigeon.
DofferTJE is a small cock.
Birds are often named after the colour of their feathers such as ‘Blauwe’ (Blue bird) or ‘Wittenbuik’ (White feathered belly)
Birds are often named after a sportsman such as Merckx and so on.
Birds are often named after a race they won such as ‘de Limoges’ (bird won race from Limoges.
Long Distance gets all the publicity but less than 10 percent race from long distance, which means that 90 percent of the champions do not get the attention they deserve.
Pigeon magazines organise ‘National’ Championships which are NOT National.
In Holland there are 2 sorts of Long Distance races: One day races and Two day races (Birds released at noon).
In Belgium at long distance all birds are released early morning apart from Barcelona.
In case you often read other Dutch terms that you do not understand feel free to contact A Schaerlaeckens.