Race Director Loft Report

Every year before intake starts we dread outbreaks of Highly Pathogenic Avian Influenza. Some years are worse than others and this year was a particularly bad year with outbreaks in most of Europe and in the USA and locally in South Africa

In the last few months we have been in constant negotiations both in South Africa and abroad with various governmental departments to allow pigeons into South Africa to compete in the SAMDPR.

After seemingly endless meetings, emails, phone calls and sleepless nights we finally received our import permits for this year’s SAMDPR. The good news is that the pigeons from EU and USA are on their way and will soon be joining pigeons received from non-affected countries.

One thing that has come out of the negotiations is that in future we have a model; that means even if a country has had an outbreak and is in process of declaring itself free of Highly Pathogenic Avian Influenza we will be able to receive pigeons as long as the conditions of the permit are met. Basically this means that time lost in negotiations will not happen in future.

Are we running behind? Well yes and no. Yes in that the pigeons will stay in quarantine a little longer than usual. However with the pigeons now being quarantined in the lofts that will be the race lofts, this is a huge bonus for orientation, as in quarantine the pigeons are able to see their surrounds.

The feedback from the lofts is that the pigeons received so far, are in excellent condition and enjoys an unseasonably warm South African winter.

In the coming weeks once quarantine is lifted, orientation of the pigeons will start in earnest and training of the pigeons will begin. Due to the delay in the intake of pigeons, loading information onto the website is taking longer than planned but the SAMDPR administration staff is working to get back up to speed.

We would like to wish all our entrants the best of luck for the upcoming race season.

Kind regards

Michael Holt

 
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