great gift idea for that special fancier is a Siegel's Gift
Certificate, available in any amount, for a holiday gift,
a birthday, Father's Day, or any other occasion. Just phone us
at 800-437-4436 and we'll make up a nice certificate and
mail it to your recipient. He or she will be able to apply it
to a new book, a great new training basket, medications or supplements,
or any other purchase from Siegel's.
Dozens of birds from the Zazueta loft have been
auctioned. Due to popular request, we've retained information about
the lineage and history of the Zazueta loft here on the web
Click here for details
The timer revolution
When split seconds count, make sure you're counting split seconds
accurately! Benzing electronic timers
have quickly become the new standard in our sport and are more
popular than ever! The best has gotten better! Benzing's
new M-1 clock and "Lazer" antennas are now in
the States, and full distribution is now available. They are the
most accurate, sensitive antenna in the world today--with the
most antenna coils per square inch of any
pigeon scanning antenna available!
was a kick to sit at our computer monitor and "watch"
the birds clock in the World Ace Challenge races!
The biggest races rely on the Benzing tradition of accuracy
and speed, and the Benzing M-1 system is revealing itself
to be heads above the competition.
A Benzing M-1 "Lazer" system recently clocked
the Lou McElroy Race. Among the other major one-loft races
using Benzing Lazers are the Colorado Goldrush Race,
a 300-mile race flown from Elm Creek, NE, released on October
the East Coast Classic, the Gulf Coast
Classic, the San Diego Classic, the San Jacinto
Classic, America's King Cup, the Snowbird
Classic, and the Caribbean Classic.
Other members of the Benzing "family" of futurity races
and racing combines include the Texas Shoot-Out, American Showdown,
Desert Classic, East Coast Challenge, Flamingo Race, Caribbean
Classic, Queen City Memorial, Boundbrook Futurity, and
Paterson Air Derby, among many others....
Tell me more...
me to Instructions for Downloading Benzing Clocks to WinSpeed after
me to Instructions for Acquiring and Using the Benzing Download
me to Instructions for Atomic Timer Use on Benzing Electronic Systems...
me to a list of printers that are compatible with Benzing Electronic
In News & Views:
In his newest report, Stefan Mertens interviews Engels, Hermans, Van den Eeckhout, & Van den Velde. Winners of the 1st National Limoges, Chateauroux, Cahors & Gueret... Mertens filed another recent
report on Marc van Haute, Smetlede. Winners of the 1st National Champion Little MD Youngsters.
For these reports, and many other archived features, click here...
Read on for all the news!
Suanovil is not in stock now. When it is unavailable, there are effective substitutes.
Suanovil is one of the most effective products for respiratory
infections in our birds, so feel free to call us about its availability
whenever you might need it.
When you cannot find Suanovil, there are very effective substitutes
for it: Doxy-T and Doxyvet, Tylan Concentrate,
Linco-Spectin, or Ery-Mycin. Any of these can be
substituted for Suanovil with very satisfactory results.
For severe cases, we recommend using two of these products in
combination with each other.
Ed Minvielle on the road...again!
Siegel Pigeons prospective travel schedule:
Texas Center Racing Pigeon Convention - July 15-18 Lafayette, LA
California State Racing Pigeon Organization - November 5-8
AU Convention - Oct 21-25 Salt Lake City, UT
National Show - Nov. 21 NY
Dixie - December 9-12 FL
We look forward to a wonderful convention season and to seeing our friends and customers around the country on our travels in 2015...
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Tips for the fancier:
in the Loft
Important notice to all Benzing ETS users: Benzing has announced that effective January 30, 2013 they will no longer produce the BR electronic chip rings. The only chip rings that they will produce will be the PRO chips and the ICOM chips (which can be inserted into blank AU or IF bands.) Benzing equipment will continue to support the BR chips through the end of 2014, but effective January 1, 2015 Benzing clocks and club units will no longer support the BR chip ring, only the PRO and ICOM chips will continue to be supported by Benzing equipment.
Effective immediately we are removing the BR chip rings from our site. We will continue to inventory the BR chips through the end of 2012, but orders for BR chips will have to be placed by phone. The PRO chips are currently .10 to .15 cents cheaper and will work on all Benzing clocks and club units that have had the latest software updates installed. To check whether your clock or club unit is running a software that will accept the PRO rings, you can refer to the chart below.
We receive a lot of questions regarding how often a fancier should update his Benzing clock. In general it is suggested that a software update be performed every two years. This also applies to the club units. Benzing's older model club units (where the CAN and club point are separate pieces) will NOT be able to handle the newer type rings that Benzing has in the production pipeline for the future, so it is strongly suggested that if your club is still using an older model club unit you contact Siegel's at your earliest convenience to discuss trading your unit in for replacement. This schedule will allow for continued seamless and problem-free enjoyment of your racing hobby.
Please go to the Benzing Accessories page to order PRO chip rings.
Please go to the Benzing Timers page to consult the software update chart.
Important notice to all Benzing Express users:
We have just found out that there is an issue regarding the Benzing Express clocks using software versions lower than 3.0. Any clocks running software versions lower than 3.0 must have a software update. Click on this link to go to detailed instructions for how to secure the update.
Also, there is a new printer available at Office Depot and other retail outlets that works well with our Benzing club units and clocks. It is the Brother HL-5370 DW.
Now, let's turn our attention to the birds...
Let's take a look back at what we have done in the loft over the last four weeks, and then I'd like to share my ideas about training for races and caring for breeders. Our birds have been vaccinated in June for pox and PMV, have been given tablets for worms and for canker, have had their ninth and tenth flights pulled, have been dipped in a 57 percent Malathion solution for external parasites, and have had a follow-up worm tablet. We have semi-darkened the lofts and left the birds undisturbed to begin a good molt. In the third week of June, we have given the birds a three-day canker treatment, followed by one day of Digestal and Pigeon Power or Ferro Prodol on the feed.
I have started letting the birds out to start "getting their wings back under them" by the end of June or early July, and at the same time, I have begun a 14-day respiratory treatment using Doxyvet or Doxy-T and Suanovil. I have also started a 30-day treatment for malaria immediately after the respiratory treatment, with Quinacrine.
It takes a week to ten days before the birds will readily take to the air at this point. But that is all right with me because they are still being medicated, and they still need a little more time to let their flights finish growing. By mid-July, with a little prompting, we can have the team back on the wing around the loft for 30 to 40 minutes every morning and afternoon. Only now are we ready to start training. Usually, it takes us a week to ten days to progress from our first toss, which is not more than 1 ½ miles, to our 12-mile station. It seems that once they have mastered 12 miles, we can jump them fairly quickly to 20 and then 30. Once we are at the 30-mile station, we are on our way.
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We don't do the "30-miles-first-toss" or the "train-in-all-directions" thing, because we train our pigeons to be racers, not homers. I know some fanciers who do this, and some of them are quite successful, but the method I choose is different. I want to keep the birds as confident as possible by training them along the general direction of the race-course, so that they become somewhat familiar enough with the terrain to head for home straight out of the box. This I call "training to race," which means a lot of short tosses in the general direction of the race station.
I've had discussions with fanciers who have told me that they do the "around-the-clock" type of training to teach the birds how to think. My response is that first, I want racing pigeons, which means race winners. The old adage "think long, think wrong" can be like an anchor to a racing pigeon that cannot decide which direction to take on race day.
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Our pigeons have ample homing ability, thanks to the many generations of breeding behind them. When they need to use it just like migrating geese, they'll know how. If they've made a mistake and gotten off course, chances are they have already lost the race, so it doesn't matter how long they take to come home. I have to trust that the class of their breeding will eventually bring them home to race again. We want our birds to race home, every toss if possible. I believe that practice makes perfect, and practice racing makes for fast pigeons, as long as the distance of the tosses doesn't take the race out of them. Then on race day, they'll be coming home fast, because they are accustomed to doing it.
I've been fascinated for years by the Cornell University research on homing instincts and training techniques. I've spent many hours studying it, and I am well aware that pigeons develop habits, even in homing. If taken in a specific direction often enough, they will begin to head "home" by taking the same route all the time. If taken in a completely opposite direction, the birds will still head out in the same direction that they are accustomed to, before they eventually figure out that they've been tricked.
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My thinking, therefore, is that I want my team to separate from the flock right from the release, if that is possible. So if the flock is circling a few times to figure out where it is, my hope is that mine are the birds that invariably leave the flock early. The theory is that my birds have been trained so often from the same direction that they just take off, without having to think about it. Because my birds have been "trained to race" if they get a jump at the start, they should be hard to catch during the race. This method has worked successfully for us and for quite a few other lofts around the country that have asked about our training techniques.
My most frequent recommendation to fanciers at this time of year is not to neglect the breeders during these months. It would be quite easy to let them slide since the young birds need a great deal of attention now. Also, in some areas, old bird racing is still going on. These circumstances can demand long hours in the loft, but when the breeders are separated, it is always a good idea to treat them for canker. Turbosole is very effective for canker. Dipping the breeders in the same solution of 57 percent Malathion (mixed 1/4 cup per one gallon of water) that I use on the young birds will kill any external parasites that they may have picked up during the breeding season. This Malathion dip also promotes a great start for a good molt.
In my opinion, many lofts around the country keep their breeders much too fat in the off season. Overweight breeders could be one of the underlying reasons that so many fanciers have fertility and laying problems once the breeding season begins. Current studies of animal health in many species are proving that animals kept on a somewhat restricted diet live longer, are more energetic, and are fertile longer. Proper nutrients must be given, of course, but heavy feeding is detrimental. There are so many good dietary supplements available today that it is not necessary to give huge amounts of high carbohydrate feed to our birds.
I have been in many European lofts whose managers have told me that the breeders are put on restricted diets for weeks. Some make only water available to their breeders for an entire week. Though some might think that this is a bad practice, the evidence points to healthier pigeons as a result of this restricted diet. None of the lofts that I know who do this have ever had a bad breeding season.
Our breeders receive a diet made up like this: ¼ barley, ¼ wheat, ¼ milo and ¼ Purina Nutra Blend pellets for up to six weeks just after the birds have been separated. Then we give them a regular breeding mix, measured, so that the birds don't put on any extra weight during the winter. This "purging mixture," as I call it, is given for varying periods of time, depending on the weather and the state of the moult. This kind of diet will certainly ensure that the breeders will not pack on extra fat, and it also helps to jump-start the moult.
Many European fanciers use “moulting seeds” combined with tea as their breeders are coming into the moult. The theory is that a special combination of herbal seeds, when boiled into tea and given in the drinking water, will actually stimulate the hormones that control the shedding of feathers. The most popular one of these products that Siegel’s carries is Colombine Moulting Seeds. This product is really helpful in setting the tone for shedding old down feathers and the promotion of a healthy moult, especially when it’s used in combination with tea.
It's the condition of the breeders starting from the time they are separated at the end of the spring, throughout the summer, and into the fall, that is most important in producing a first-rate group of young birds for the following year. Don't neglect your breeders during that six-month period from the end of May to the latter part of November. Fanciers who take extra care during this time are the ones who most often enjoy the best breeding seasons.
I also should mention a product called Cometabol Drain to help you achieve optimum health for your birds. It's from the Comed company and provides the perfect amounts of minerals, trace elements, iron, sulfur, silicon, and vegetable extracts-essentially all the nutrients that I've been talking about. I've tried the product myself and was very impressed at the effect it had on my birds.
Yours in the Sport,
With young babies in the loft, it's time to give them and your breeders the supplements that will keep
them robust and healthy throughout this season.
Optimum nutrition for youngsters now will maximize their racing
Ed's suggestions follow...
the world-wide product of choice for canker in pigeons. This product has
a wide safety margin, and is safe to use during racing, breeding, or molting.
Complete directions included.
SW 2.00 lbs
Digestal – This product contains helpful lactobacillus bacteria, which are essential
to maintaining good digestion. Digestal replenishes these bacteria which
are destroyed during medication. (Colombine - Belgium)
SW 1.95 lbs
Indispensable in promoting absolute optimum health. Given all year long,
this supplement with minerals, trace elements, iron, sulfur, silicon,
and vegetable extracts will make your birds shine with health.(Comed-Belgium)
SW 2.45 lbs
- This is the world-wide product of choice for upper respiratory problems.
It is is also less affected by concurrent use of calcium and other mineral
supplements. Very popular.
SW 1.70 lbs
Doxy-T - Same as Doxy-Vet with added
Tylan. Use before and during racing season to prevent respiratory problems.
SW 1.70 lbs
Power – This chelated liquid mineral mixture is readily absorbed through
the intestines into the bird’s system. Use it extensively during racing
and breeding, often spraying it onto the feed. Works extremely well as
a bonding agent for brewer’s yeast and vitamins. A Siegel’s exclusive,
considered by many as the best mineral supplement available.
SW 2.20 lbs
SW 3.45 lbs
SW 9.70 lbs
Ferro-Prodol - An organic iron and oxygen supplement which supplies iron, calcium,
sodium and fructose in an oxygenated form. Aids in maintaining optimum
health during times of extreme stress by acting as a catalyst for healthy
blood and cell renewal. Use during times of increased performance demands
such as racing, breeding, and moulting. (Pego - Germany)
SW 4.00 lbs
SW 2.00 lbs
Berimax - Advanced canker treatment for racing and show birds. Laboratory tests in Europe and the U.S. have proven that this unique "all natural" formula provides the most advanced recipe against all 26 strains of canker.
SW 1.00 lb
2 - 80 gram canisters
SW 1.50 lb
3 - 80 gram canisters
SW 2.00 lb
Ecol-Tonic – An all-natural product fortified with ten special organic
acids and proven in the loft to be effective in boosting immunity and
promoting health and vigor, and bringing the droppings back to normal
in racing and show pigeons. 16 oz. will dose 32 gallons of water. Always
remember to follow the use of Ecol-Tonic with a good pro-biotic.
SW 2.70 lbs
SW 3.40 lbs
SW 9.70 lbs
Gard -- A pro-biotic
water-additive formula made from specially cultured, naturally occurring
microbes and a unique catalyst, which increases blood-stream absorption
by ten times. Use one teaspoon per gallon of water. One quart covers 60
to 80 birds for six months.
SW 3.80 lbs
SW 2.80 lbs
SW 9.30 lbs
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