Deschacht-Denduyver (Westkerke BE), a couple that lives for their pigeons

Christiane and Arsène from Westkerke are a very likeable couple, and their pigeon family happens to be one of Belgium's top performing breeds. Their pigeons have been very successful in recent years, and 2019 was no different.

They claimed an impressive 38 first prizes last season alone. And they competed in every championship with the goal of winning a title. The two fanciers complement each other very well, since they are both passionate about their hobby. They both originate from a family of pigeon fanciers, and they took their time to develop a high quality pigeon breed over the years, that is now ready to compete with the best!

Christiane and Arsène, a couple that lives for their pigeons

When Arsène still had a full-time job, Christiane was committed to looking after the pigeons: she released the birds, she fed them and she cleaned the lofts, to make life a bit easier for her husband. Arsène went into retirement a while ago, and today he gets most of the work done by himself, although Christiane is still eager to get involved in the pigeon loft as well, should it be necessary.

And Christiane still spends her Saturdays in the pigeon lofts: she calls in the pigeons, and she brings them back to their partner afterwards. Arsène is convinced that "the birds arrive home more quickly when she is around." We have heard this before: pigeons and female fanciers are not a bad combination at all.

The pigeon breed

When Christiane and Arsène got married, they received a number of pigeons from their rspective fathers, since they had both been successful fanciers back in the day. They supplied their son and daughter with some talented birds, which allowed the couple to have a great start. Arsène's father gave them a few Pepermans and Santens descendants (through Gerard Latruwe, Ruddervoorde), as well as a half brother of a 1st National Limoges of Albert David. Meanwhile, Christiane's father provided them with pigeons of his Bijter bloodline.

In the 1990s, these pigeons were paired and crossbred to pigeons of Gommaire Verbruggen (Kaggevinne), Julien Vaneenoo (Wingene), Gaby Vandenabeele (Dentergem), Vanhove-Uytterhoeven (Putte) and Gaston Dewulf (Oostende). These bloodlines proved a solid foundation, and it set them up for many successful seasons. Such renowned pigeons as Goliath, Pele, Filippo, De Provinciaal, De Zwaluw, Spyder, Calypso, Messi etc. are all provincial ace pigeons and provincial winners that stem directly from their stock bloodlines. And their best birds of today still originate to some extent to these initial bloodlines.

The loft welcomed some additional reinforcements in 2000, with pigeons of Ferdinand & Karel Denduyver from Ichtegem (2 granddaughters of their Olympiad pigeon and 2 daughters of their 1st Nat. Limoges), Van Hee-Decoster from Jabbeke (1 hen that bred several top quality birds), Eric Desmedt from Zerkegem, (bloodlines of Frans Dekeyzer and Omer Bogaert), Marc and Geert Pollin from Snellegem (through Franky Catteeuw and WMJF Boddaert), Kurt De Keyzer from Staden (the lines of Gaby Vandenabeele, Cools-Blancke and Delbaere Sampers), Carine Ver Eecke from Pittem (De Saer x Vandenabeele), Roger Casier from Lissewege (granddaughter of Pau), and Liliane Demely from Moorsele (bloodlines of A&H Reynaert).

In recent years, the two fanciers successfully bred pigeons together with Freddy Vanmoortel from Lombardsijde, who has a collection of pigeons of Huub Hermans, Eric Hamstra-Aldus from The Netherlands, Pierre Mathys, Jos Thone (As), Agy Verreckt (Tessenderlo), Marnick Deneve (Aalter) and Allemeersch-Van Parys (Ruddervoorde).

We do hope that we included everyone, because Arsène would not want to forget any of his fellow fanciers. He would like to apologise if he did leave someone out.

The achievements, a good measure of value...

Claiming first prizes is not an easy feat. It takes a top class fancier, top quality pigeons and of course unconditional commitment. We take a look back at the previous three racing seasons (with prizes per two).

2017: 48 first prizes

Fontenay 265 yearlings: 1, 3, 4, 8, 9, 10, 11, 14, 15, 16, 17, 18, 19, 25, 26, … (26 /28)
Orleans 263 yearlings: 4, 9, 10, 14, 19, 23, … (21/26)
Fontenay 314 olds: 1, 3, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9, 10, 11, 11, 16, 17, 18, 19, 19, 22, 31, …(28 /30)
Orleans 255 olds: 6, 9, 15, 16, 20, 21, 26, … (21 /26)
Pontoise 490 young birds: 3, 4, 5, 8, 10, 18, 27, 29, 31, 32, 51, … (21 /24)
Clermont 393 young birds: 1, 2, 5, 6, 10, 11, 15, 19, … (11 /12)

2018: 20 first prizes

Clermont 190 olds: 1, 5, 9 en 48 (4 /4)
Clermont 102 olds: 1, 3, 4, 5, 7, 12, … (14/15)
Fontenay 202 olds: 1, 6, 10, 12, 40, 86 (6 /6)
Fontenay 976 olds: 13, 15, 20, 23, 25, 27, 40, 94, 100, … (17 /18)
Arras 164 yearlings: 1, 7, 12, 13, 14, … (14 /22)
Fontenay 226 yearlings: 2, 9, 14, 15, 20, 21, 23, … (11/12)
Pontoise 180 yearlings: 1, 5, 6, 13, …(11 /12)
Pontoise 153 yearlings: 3, 5, 8, 9, 13, … (13 /16)

2019: 38 first prizes

Arras 324 olds: 1, 2, 3, 10, 11, 1(, 16, 24, 25, 26, 27, 28, … (23/ 34)
Arras 203 olds: 1, 2, 9, 13, 17, 19, 21, 22, … (18/ 26)
Clermont 205 olds: 2, 4, 6, 6, 8, 9, 10, 19, 21, …. (12/ 13)
Clermont 340 olds: 2, 4, 5, 6, 7, 16, 16, 18, 21, 22, 28, 29, 32, 33, … (31/ 35)
Clermont 325 olds: 3, 5, 10, 12, 14, 15, 16, 18, 20, 22, 24, 27, 31, 32, 34, …(30/ 34)
Clermont 468 olds: 4, 8, 9, 10, 11, 14, 16, 24, 26, 27, 35, 36, 38, 39, 41, 46, 47, …(43/ 44)
Arras 183 yearlings: 1, 2, 9, 13, 14, 15, 16, 17, 18, … (12/ 18)
Clermont 148 yearlings: 4, 5, 6, 9, 11, 15, 20, … (16: 20)
Clermont 229 yearlings: 3, 7, 8, 9, 10, 11, 13, 18, 19, 21, 22, … (27/ 29)
Arras 314 young birds: 1, 3, 4, 8, … (16/ 21)
Arras 91 young birds: 1, 2, 4, 6, 10, 13, 14, 16, … (12/ 15)
Clermont 509 young birds: 2, 3, 6, 7, 9, 19, 21, 25, 28, 53, … (23/ 31)
Clermont 305 young birds: 1, 2, 3, 3, 5, 12, 14, 15, 16, 28, 34, …(20/ 20)
Clermont 256 young birds: 1, 5, 9, 11, 12, 15, 16, 26, …(18/ 20)
Pontoise 606 young birds: 2, 3, 11, 19, 20, 22, 25, 26, 29, 41, … (37/ 52) 

Championships

This team has managed to deliver week after week, and this in turn led to several championship titles at club level:

2018:

3° provincial ace pigeon sprint (olds & yearlings)
1° Members champion EDL-De Zwaluw
1° Long Distance olds EDL-De Zwaluw
1° Sprint yearlings EDL-De Zwaluw
1° Sprint old birds EDL-De Zwaluw
1° Middle Distance olds EDL-De Zwaluw
1° Middle Distance yearlings EDL-De Zwaluw
4° Sprint old birds Kortemark

2019:

1° Champion sprint young birds – Oostende
1° Champion ½ distance young birds – Oostende
1° ace pigeon sprint young birds – Oostende
1° members championship with first nominated – Aartrijke
1° champion sprint old birds – Aartrijke
1° champion sprint yearlings – Aartrijke
1° champion ½ distance old birds – Aartrijke
1° champion summer races – Aartrijke
2° champion ½ distance yearlings – Aartrijke
2° champion sprint young birds – Aartrijke
3° Couple championship - Aartrijke
2° ace pigeon old birds 300km+ KBDB West Flanders
2° general champion WVV (provincial races)
4° old birds zone A1 (zonal)
6° yearlings zone A1 (zonal)
8° Young birds Pontoise races (zonal)

To conclude

They have been outstanding season after season, and it looks like they are not planning to back down any time soon. We wish Christiane and Arsène all the best for 2000!