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Selection procedure and quality control

SELECTION PROCEDURE

1.Selection procedure for fanciers

Which fanciers will be eligible to auction pigeons on PIPA?

The selection procedure of PIPA consists of different steps. PIPA attaches great importance to reliability and quality; both for the pigeons on offer and for the fanciers who are selling pigeons. As long as these requirements are met basically any fancier will have the chance to sell his special collection of pigeons.

Over the last ten years PIPA has developed a relationship of mutual trust with most of the top class pigeon fanciers in Europe. We have an exclusive collaboration with them. Obviously other less well-known but equally talented fanciers are welcome to offer their pigeons on PIPA as well. It is our goal to strike a balance between famous, established names and less well-known top fanciers. When we enter into a partnership with a fancier we will always provide a long term vision.

2. Selection procedure for pigeons

Which pigeons can be offered for sale on PIPA?

We receive a lot of requests from fanciers who would like to sell their pigeons on PIPA but only a small portion of these pigeons are accepted. PIPA aims to deliver top quality and uses a rigorous selection method to decide whether or not a pigeon will be accepted in a PIPA auction.

The selection procedure for pigeons is twofold:

In the first part of the procedure we examine the information that is provided with the pigeon; in the second part we examine the pigeon itself in the hand.

1) The first step of our selection procedure focuses on the information provided with the pigeon:

The pigeons are divided into four categories: proven breeder, proven racing pigeon, young bird and collector’s item. For every category different pieces of information are important for the selection.

a) If a proven breeder is offered for auction we obviously check its performance as a breeding pigeon first. If it meets the requirements the second step will be to consider the other aspects. The age of the pigeon is a very important factor.

For instance: pigeons of six or seven years old have to be of great quality and they need excellent references (e.g. a seven year old pigeon that has only bred one good pigeon is not exactly a top class breeder; a 4 or 5 year old that has bred several good pigeons is.) In addition, good spirit, a good health and excellent fertility are extremely important for an older breeding pigeon (older pigeons have an increased risk of becoming infertile during transport).

b) If a proven racing pigeon is offered we run through the list of achievements and the dates of these achievements. We at PIPA think it is important that the best results were achieved not too long ago. A five or six year old pigeon with great results in its first two seasons that could not win top prizes or breed great pigeons after the second season will generally not pass the test and will usually be declined.

c) If a young and inexperienced pigeon is offered we will primarily examine the racing performance and/or the breeding references of its sire and/or dam. In this case it is important to provide relevant information about the parents, brothers, sisters, etc. as much as possible. Every young bird that is offered should be a direct youngster of a proven top racer or breeder. The only exception is when the pigeons are grandchildren of a proven breeder or a top class breeding pair of which no direct youngsters are available anymore. For the auction season 2012-2013 DNA profiles will be provided for the auctions with rounds of young birds. For the 2013-2014 auction season we strive to provide these profiles for all young birds in general (born from 2013 onwards).

d) We have a special category called collector’s items. This includes exceptional stock birds, pigeons with a special pedigree and direct sons or daughters of a world famous pigeon that are very popular, because they are rare or hard to find. In exceptional cases we will also accept these pigeons for PIPA auctions.

2) The second step of our selection procedure involves a quality check of the pigeons on offer:

If a pigeon makes it through the first round of our selection procedure it is time for the second part: an examination of each individual pigeon in the hand.

One of the things we attach great importance to, is the fact that every single pigeon auctioned on PIPA is checked in the hand by one of our experts. The single purpose of this test is to verify if the pigeons on offer meet the required characteristics and quality criteria that our customers appreciate the most. Thanks to the experience we gained and the extensive feedback we get from our customers, we now have a basic idea of what people are looking for when they purchase a pigeon.

PIPA checks every pigeon in the hand before it is auctioned. In addition we provide a quality report for every pigeon.

This is an example of what a quality report looks like:

Note: a quality report is created as objectively as possible. The PIPA experts gather several times a year to check pigeons together to streamline their method of examining pigeons. Keep in mind that a quality check is always a subjective matter in which we try to create a report based on the different qualities of a pigeon (body, wings, muscles, vitality) that is as objective as possible. A test report does not aim to classify a pigeon as good or bad but it is primarily used as a reference for the buyer, it does not necessarily match your personal preferences.

You can watch this movie to learn more about our quality control:

QUALITY CONTROL: DNA CERTIFICATE

What is a DNA certificate?

A DNA certificate is a document provided by an authorised veterinary surgeon that confirms the relationship between the pigeon and its sire and/or dam through scientific research.

Why does PIPA provide a DNA certificate?

Research on DNA has been perfected in the last few years so it was a logical, but important step for PIPA to introduce the use of a DNA certificate to prove the relationship to father and/or mother.

The main reason for us to provide a DNA certificate is that it gives certainty about the parentage of a pigeon for all parties involved.

Which pigeons will have a DNA certificate?

All young birds that are sold on PIPA are subjected to a DNA test to determine their sex, which means their sex is guaranteed. There are a few exceptions:

  • Young birds that have been raced.
  • Young birds that are not sold by the fancier who bred the pigeon.

These pigeons are not sold with a DNA certificate by default.

Old birds have obviously had their sexes determined earlier on.

PIPA is a pioneer in providing DNA certificates for young birds at auction.

Check out the video (start: 04:02) below to learn more about DNA testing on pigeons:

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