Jules and his son Rony, a perfect combination
Jules Lens is a well deserved winner for the title of National Champion Young Birds National Races 2012. Jules has already won several championship and ace pigeon titles in Putte. We run through the most important titles in the past few years:
2012 1st Champion KBDB Nat. Races Young Birds 1st Champion KBDB Provincial Antwerp Long Dist. Young Birds 1st Long Dist. Club Antwerp Young Birds 1st Flying Club Antwerp Young Birds 1st General Champion Middle Dist. 2000 Zuiderkempen 1st General Champion Middle Dist. Holland 1st Champion Middle Distance Holland Old Birds, Yearlings 1st General Champion Soissons Holland 3rd First Ace Pigeon Middle Distance Holland Young Birds 2nd First Ace Pigeon Middle Distance 2000 Zuiderkempen Young Birds 2011 1st Ace Pigeon Long Dist. Club Antwerp Old Birds 1st prov. Nevers Young Birds 1st prov. Moulins Old Birds 2010 1st Champion Old Birds Middle Distance 2000 Zuiderkempen 2009 1st Champion Small Middle Distance Houtvense Fondclub 1st Champion Light Long Distance Old Birds Zuiderkempen 2008 1st Champion Young Birds Flying Club Antwerp 1st Champion Young Birds Small Middle Distance Houtvense Fondclub 2nd Nat. Champion Young Birds
A team of 15 breeders, 28 widowers, two racing hens and about 70 young birds have been winning prizes over the years in the sprint races, middle distance and the light long distance. Jules was lucky to own a fantastic breeding pair; their sons and daughters proved to have outstanding breeding qualities as well.
The success story of Lens is mainly based on two pigeons: 6365607/93 (Engels Leon x Engels J&J) x 6316896/94 (Flor Vervoort). These pigeons were the parents of a few decent racing pigeons, including the winner of a first Prov. Bourges against 2037 pigeons and a first Prov. Gueret against 149 pigeons. It was especially their son De 24 (6152524/98) who had a great influence on this pigeon family. At the moment the entire breed is based around this pigeon. That explains why his name appears on the pedigree of almost every pigeon here:
Sire of: 1st prov. La Souterraine 1515 p. (fastest of 3541 p) 1st prov. Argenton 3088 p. (9th nat. 23078 p.) 7th prov. Bourges 3988 p. (34th nat. 26679 p.) 6407774/03: 1st Quievrain 256 p., 2nd Quievrain 237 p., 3rd Quievrain 206 p., 8th quievrain 252 p., 1st Noyon 202 p., 2nd Noyon 127 p., 9th Noyon 203 p.; 6140452/06: 1st Pithiviers 404 p., 5th Noyon 602 p., 7th Noyon 754 p., 13th Noyon 492 p., 19th Melun 796 p.,20th Noyon 784 p.; Grandfather of: 6349678/07: 1, 1, 1, 2, 5 Soissons; 3, 4, 4 Pithiviers; 3rd Marne la Vallee 6183898/09: A champion in the sprint races 6140438/06: 11th nat. Gueret 2068 p., 15th nat. Argenton 5208 p., 40th nat. Bourges 11756 p. 6406840/04: 4 x 1st Prize Noyon, 1 x 1st Prize Quievrain 6115723/12: 1st Ace Pigeon Middle Distance 2000 Zuiderkempen 6183206/11: 1st prov. Nevers 1141 p., 6th int. prov. Blois 5000 p.
The two most important descendants of De 24 that were housed in the loft in Putte (one of which has now moved elsewhere) were The Magnificent (6115741/12) and Rising Star (6115724/12). Together they have managed to bring the title of First National Champion KBDB Young Birds National Races to Putte. They won the title with these results:
Bourges 33,524 p.: 476th - 81st Argenton 8624 p.: 89th - 136th Gueret 16,988 p.: 181th - 372nd
They achieved a coefficient of 7.5275. The second in the ranking was well behind, with a coefficient of 21.1606. They could have had an even lower coefficient but Rising Star wasted four minutes when he arrived home from Bourges, probably because he was scared of the group of people that were waiting for him. Without those four minutes he would have finished in the national top ten. The Magnificent won 13 prizes in 15 races, nine of which were won per ten. Rising Star was also basketed 15 times and he managed to win 12 prizes, six of which were won per ten. After a failed sales agreement Jules had a serious blow. The Magnificent had not left the loft for five weeks in a row. When it appeared that they could not come to an agreement the pigeon was placed back in the widowers’ loft. In his first flight outside the loft there was a sparrow hawk looking for a meal. Unfortunately these birds tend to pick out the wrong birds: the best pigeons in a loft are usually the tastiest. There were about thirty pigeons making a flight around the loft and it was The Magnificent that got killed. How unfortunate.
Medical guidance is kept to a minimum in the loft of Jules Lens: he uses a strict selection method and he relies completely on the knowledge of the down to earth vet Fernand Mariën from Tielen. “I have never had to deal with tricho or head diseases; eye drops before or after the race are unknown to me”, says Jules. “Perhaps that is the reason why I did not have to deal with eye diseases last year like many other top lofts.” He feeds his pigeons some tea on Mondays. When they arrive home he provides electrolytes; they are also given some red powder (Vitamineral) on Sundays and fishmeal on Tuesdays from Dr. Mariën. They also get some fitness syrup by Dr. Mariën once a month. We should not forget to mention that a crushed clove of garlic is added to the drinking water every single day of the year. Jules uses three different types of racing mixtures mixed together; when the pigeons come home they can eat some peanuts as well.
Widowers that race the light long distance are basketed every two weeks. The young birds can stay together until about one month before Bourges; after that they are raced with the sliding door. In 2013 Jules will be separating the young bird even later in the season. “This gives them an even better chance to have a partner.” The winners of the National Championship were actually paired with each other. Every season he adds two hens to the group of young birds that will be basketed for races. This method proved useful: one of these hens was the 6140438/06, which managed to win no less than 46 prizes in her career (without doubles), including: 7th Pithiviers 2229 p. 8th Paderborn 136 p. 11th Toury 440 p. 15th nat. Argenton 5208 p. 11th nat. Gueret 2608 p. 11th prov. Chateauroux 1605 p. 40th nat. Bourges 11756 p. 62nd nat. Gueret 2636 p, 12th Bourges 415 p.
Young pigeons outside in the cold and the snow
When I left the loft Jules waved and said: “See you later this season.” He explained why: “I would love to win a national race on the day; maybe I can do it in 2013.” This is not an unrealistic goal considering the qualities of Jules’ pigeon family. After all, another well known fancier from Antwerp has managed to achieve that same goal last season.