About self destruction and medication (oct 25th)
Sometimes you need to protect fanciers against themselves. It happens too often that fanciers themselves are responsible for their own fall. And in many cases money is to blame. I will give some examples. They truly happened, only the names are fake.
John had been a modest fancier all his life, till suddenly, he got that super bird. He got a lot of publicity and consequently buyers on his doorstep. Initially his prices were much too cheap. He realised that when he mentioned the price for babies to his first buyer. ‘Then I want a complete round’, he said. In one year time he doubled the price but still he had a long waiting list. John, in his seventies, had had a poor youth and now he could hardly believe what happened to him. He bred one round after the other and the money rolled in.
Till he got a problem. The babies did not grow up nicely any more, they stood right up in the nest bowl when two weeks old, they were skinny and also the breeders lost weight. Till the day came that he could hardly breed one decent baby any more. He tried all kinds of supplements, but in vain. Even the best vets could not improve the health of the birds. The vitality was completely gone. What went wrong? John himself was responsible. He had finished his birds by ´over breeding´.
The example is reminiscent of that of Peter. He became famous because of a National Ace. He got a big demand for birds as well and the mistake he made was to keep more breeders. More breeders meant more babies. More babies meant more money. In the past he got rid of average birds, but would it not be stupid not to breed from them now that his birds were so hot? After 3 or 4 ´golden years´ he became average as well. Or not even that. He could hardly win a prize any more. Fellow fanciers did not take him serious anymore and after a race they did not even ask him at what time he had clocked his first bird.
He must often have thought about the good old days when he terrorised the region with breath taking results. A well filled bank account was the memory of his Golden Years.
The following thing pretty often happens. The pigeons do not perform well, they are cured against respiratory problems and the result is often better in the race that follows. But the following races the results are again poor and again antibiotics are given because it was so effective the first time. Thus it may happen that the birds are treated several times in one season.
Till the day comes that he cannot get his pigeons in good shape any more. One cure does not harm the birds much. But too many will only lead to misery on a longer term. Creating good condition by means of antibiotics is an illusion. With people and with pigeons as well.
Without bragging I daresay that my results in the last few years were unbelievable. You can read more about them elsewhere on this site. This year, 2019, the birds were in such a good shape before the season that I decided to stay away from any medication. And we did not visit a vet at all.
During the season we dare not cure either, since we were afraid to undermine the condition. In total we gave them a treatment against respiratory problems for two days only. And probably even that was superfluous.
And what about supplements? None, since I do not believe in them. An exception is the popular so-called yellow drops that we use before basketing.
The youngsters is another story. While in previous years we won everything (in 2018 all first championships in the Fed), this year they were not in good shape. We had no other choice than to take refuge to medicine. The condition improved immediately and we destroyed the last race, winning 12 good prizes from 12 birds entered to start with the 2 fastest of the whole provincie of Antwerp against 3,900 birds of the big shots. Unfortunately the season was finished then.
In 2011 we had serious problems with paratyphoid. Fellow sportsmen wondered how such a thing could happen to me. Will tell you the story.
The birds did not look super and good birds got lost such as 08-682 which was crowned 3rd best youngster of ALL Belgium by Superduif. Her nest sister, 682 was to become mother of ’Ad’, the 1st national Ace and 1st Olympiad bird raced by Marcel Wouters.
I knew something was wrong but the last thing I thought about was paratyphoid, since I cure against paratyphoid every year in fall. But the problem WAS paratyphoid indeed. What went wrong? For many years I had cured with the same stuff! Baytril (10 days) was the solution. After the cure the results became as spectacular as they had ever been.
If you should follow me? Not at all. I just tell you my system. The problem for many is that champions in our sport deal so differently with paratyphoid. One champion does nothing at all, another only cures, another only gives an injection and others both cure and inject their birds. And all of them may be champions. Anyway, what happened to my birds in 2011 made me more attentive as for salmonella.
AND THE VET?
I seldom visit a vet. Experienced fanciers can afford to do so, since they are better observers. But the common fancier I would advise not ignore the vet. They better spend their money on a vet than on supplements that pigeons do not need but that are advertised so aggressively. Personally I will never waste money on medicine that pigeons do not need. But naturally, you need not agree. This a free world.