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pigeon Quality Verses Quantity pigeons
By: Ken Easley 04/26/00

Where the value lies, is the question. Is it with quality or quantity? I have always thought that quality is first and utmost in any endeavor.

In our search for the winning team of rollers, one will find there are many pigeons, which will roll. Which ones are the correct birds to use when building the winning team?

There seems to be two approaches to this answer. One would be the gathering up of any and all birds that will roll to make a team.

We on the other hand know of a better plan. This is a plan of overall success and long sightedness. This would be the quality plan.

To accomplish the quality plan, we use only sound birds of the most outstanding caliber in the stock pen. Then we follow suite in the number one team. This is where only the best will do. We want to view a compilation of our best work in one team. This will help us to make sound decisions as to what is needed to improve in the future. Birds with weak character should never be used in the stock loft or the top teams unless that is all you have to work with.

I will admit that using these slightly unstable types will create more breaks in a competition, but the overall effect is not as good as it can be.

There are very few exceptional birds of the highest quality that can break 3 times per minute for twenty minutes. Many of the average type rollers that we all breed by the truckload are capable of this.

One may ask how can we win in a competition against the guy who takes the easy road. The answer is in the math. The founders of our competition rules apparently knew this would be an issue in the future.

Let us say that you had a kit that broke 40 times in a competition. Let us further say that one of these breaks was a fifteen-bird break and your total overall score was 600 points.

I would estimate that the raw score was 420 with 1.2 and 1.2 as quality and depth. That would give a total score of 605. This is impressive and is considered the quantity approach.

Now let us look at another possibility.

Let us say that your kit broke 25 times in twenty minutes. And let us also say that you had a fourteen-bird break. The estimated total could be somewhere around 220. Now let us add quality of 1.8 and depth of 1.8 because you have only used the best and the quality is visibly superior. Your score would be 712.

In this situation it is easy to see the advantages of using the most stable and high quality rollers in the a-team as well as the breeding pen.

The quality and depth was better and the judge verified this in writing. This lets us know we are on the right track.

It takes time and more effort to put quality first but in the end it is well worth it. Which birds would you want?

The more quality birds to view at home every day for your own pleasure, that are stable and to be enjoyed for years or the alternative?

In the end isnít that really what it is all about, our hobby to be enjoyed. I donít see any money to be had for winning the big one so it must be for fun. One would be forever tainted by jealous remarks of the less fortunate if any winner should dare sell a bird.

I may or may not accomplish my goal, but it is to win the World Cup by quality and depth factors with the quantity of breaks being equal or less than that of the competition.

How do we breed for speed, high quality style and stability? Just like any other feature. First you must find one that possesses these qualities and then figure out how to make more through breeding.

One may find himself in the possession of such a bird only to discover he is unable to make more. I have found the best way to produce more of these types is through what one of my best old friends referred to as reincarnating. The best way to reincarnate a genetic accomplishment is by using the same gene pool and circumstances that produced the original with the added enhancement of doubling the genes for higher chance of success.

This would be the pretzel method. This is where you take the two best brothers or sisters and mate them to outstanding rollers on the outskirts of the family. When two outstanding rollers are raised from such matings, then the best young are mated together to reincarnate the original mating. The genes come back together with strength and vigor from both sides in a double dose.

We need a whole kit of these type to get the desired effect, which would be a kit that flies like a cluster of grapes and sets up for a big explosion. Then all together they come raining down like dumping a bucket of baseballs. Upon completing the roll, they will gather back up quickly and fly to set up for the next big explosion.

Nothing in the sport of rollers tops this kind of team.

It is far easier to speak of than to accomplish. I as well as others are in the pursuit of this goal. We will find in our endeavors to accomplish this, there are many disappointments. We have the problem of falcons that steal our work like a thief. We also have the problem of needing the best in the stock loft. When we reintroduce the best to the flying team, we are risking the loss of a lifetime of work.

I am now convinced that if we are to make real headway in the pursuit of our goal, we must expect to spend many hours, days and years. This is the best part, and I intend on enjoying each and every day.
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