Tuesday, October 24, 2017

Sport Promotion is Club Building By Herb Cartmell

(This is a reprint from 2013.  It still holds true.)

The terms and the objectives are really one in the same. If you promote our sport and put it into a ‘package’ people today can relate to, you have a better chance of growing the club through new members. I feel that one of the best ways to really promote the sport is to get those unfamiliar with our sport talking about it in a positive way. So how do we make a little ”Visual Noise ”? 

Club Training trailer. I think that clubs that offer club training have more participation and have a stronger club. Clubs that train together seem to fly together. Granted not everyone want to always train on the trailer, and that’s OK, but for those who are new to the sport, or whose schedule prevent the kind of training you need, to be competitive, it is still one of the best ways of getting everyone flying. 

Gas is a big deal today and I think always will be, so partnering up with a few other club mates only make sense. Your trailer is a great way to advertise our sport. 

Get involved in your community. We have a tremendous opportunity to show off our pigeons and their amazing ability to return home which, to the uninformed public, always seem short of amazing. Every time a pigeon truck goes down the road you have another opportunity to advertise our sport. 

For the past three years my local lions club has hosted a Flight for Sight race, where they go out and get sponsors for the 150 mile race at the beginning of the season. They have raised thousands of dollars for their sight and hearing programs, and even pay out a cash prize to the winning sponsor. What's in it for the club? Well for one thing, my neighbors and local businesses have all been talking about the pigeon race and asking when the next one is happening. OK, maybe we could build in an extra $100 cash prize for the handler, or get our shipping expenses out of it, but the amount of positive impact and good will we generate with our pigeons far outweighs anything we could generate with giving a prize to ourselves. 

Some clubs have done a race for Cancer Cure. Some have done benefits for the Wounded Warrior and our veteran organizations, the Heart Association, Big Brothers/Sisters, and YMCA. Our pigeons offer a unique fundraising opportunity that costs us nothing us as flyers. My next fundraiser race is a ‘Wounded Wing Race’, sponsored by our local American Legion chapter, with the benefits going towards PTSD support and research. (With a tie in to the military service our birds have performed of course!). 

There are many groups or organizations that you could approach and offer to put our pigeons to work for their benefit, with the understanding that they produce publicity for the race, and maybe provide the signage on the back of the pigeon truck. A truck with 3 or 4 names of organizations of the various races that you sponsor is sure to get people to talking, and put our sport in a more positive light and add interest then just flying for a few diplomas. 

There are dozens of other ways, and they keep coming, but this may provide a few idea starters for your club or organization. If you want to grow you have to step out of your box and look for ways that our pigeons can make a difference in our communities and reverse some of the negative aspects that Pigeons sometimes have. We have a unique and special sport that people are fascinated with. We just need to let them know we have it and show them. It’s the best game in town, and you can prove it. 

For more information on how to set up a charity race email: pigeonherb@comcast.net 

Monday, October 23, 2017


       My name is Abrahan Batista, I am a Christian man who loves God, family, and animals.  I began my journey with Homing Pigeons in Cuba when I was 7 years old and my dad let me build a small cage in our backyard.  I have loved the sport ever since. Batista-Toledo Loft emerged in the spring of 2013 when my fire and passion for the homing pigeons was reignited by a close friend in the area where I had just moved into, North Port, Fl. Through perseverance and a great deal of dedication I was able to breed excellent young birds and I enlisted them in the Charlotte Harbor Homing Club, in Port Charlotte. That time marked the beginning of my “American dream” as a pigeon fancier in a country where techniques, medications, and training methods where all different from what I previously knew. One thing remained true, I have a good eye for the birds and I know what they need and when they need it; it’s my opinion that knowing the birds is a priority, everything else comes with experience.  I proudly share my achievements with my fellow members of the AU:

2014       1st place: Best Team in Miami International Pigeon Race.
2014       12th place in Miami International Pigeon Race 225 miles.
2014       12th place in Miami International Pigeon Race 300 miles.
2014       1st place in Southwest Florida Combine in Old Birds Race 174 miles, total birds released 479 and 28 lofts.
2014         23th place in GHC Classic Race 350 miles, total of birds released 2636
2015         1st place in Charlotte Harbor Club Average Speed in Young Bird Race. Speed 1341.177 ypm.
2015        2nd place Champion Bird in Charlotte Harbor Club.
2015        5th place in Southwest Florida Combine Average Speed in Old Bird Race. Speed 1302.999 ypm. Lofts competing: 41
2015        1st place in Charlotte Harbor Club Average Speed in Old Bird Race. Speed 1302.999 ypm.
2015       59th place in Miami International Pigeon Race 150 miles.
2015       31st place in Miami International Pigeon Race 225 miles.
2015       32nd place in Miami International Pigeon Race 300 miles.
2016       21st place in Miami International Pigeon Race 225 miles.
2016       34th place in Miami International Pigeon Race 350 miles.
2016       I sent a team to South-Africa Million Dollar Pigeon Race (SAMDPR), first time flying internationally and all three of my birds finished the season and did not get off course.

*Attila, AU ARPU 2016 65947, Blue Bar Cock with Yellow eyes, finished in Grand Averages Position of 579 and the last race finished in 1089th place.

*Aquiles, AU ARPU 2016 65909, Blue Bar Hen with Pearl eyes, finished in Grand Averages Position of 1276.

*Apolo, AU ARPU 2016 65949, Red Check Hen with Yellow eyes, finished in Grand Averages Position of 1948 and the last race finished in 485th place.

       These accomplishments have added passion for the Homing Pigeons and at the same time show me that I am on the right path and can definitely keep improving and obtain better outcomes. With time I have acquired more experience and been able to breed better birds. I look forward to expanding my loft and continuing as a proud member of the American Racing Pigeon Union. I will like to thank this organization for sharing the results and supporting us and help us grow. As a fan of the sport I wish us all the best in the upcoming years!

       Abrahan Batista.