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  News > Fens
Jochem and Xander Fens

1st National Ace Middle Distance Young Birds KBDB  2012

by Stefan Mertens


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The Breeders

Breeding Loft

Loft Ventilation

Inside YBL

Young Bird Loft

Mega Mindy

Beerse: The national championships of the KBDB are following my opinion the best way to put the top performances of your birds into the international spotlights. Also fanciers who are not known worldwide can come into the pictures thanks to these national championships. The reason why they can do that is that the national championships KBDB are won with 1st and 2nd nominated bird or with an ace bird competition. So…equal changes for everybody…and that is still the best way !

For this report we visited the owner of the 1st national ace young birds on the middle distance. To win this ace bird competition you have to take your best 5 results with the same bird on the middle distance. I can guarantee you this is certainly not an easy championship to win !

Primus became the young hen of young fanciers Jochem and Xander Fens. Jochem and Xander are two brothers and are 13 and 7 years old. Of course they are very well supported by their father Kurt. Father Kurt has a full time job and is already early in the morning on the road for his job. Lucky that he can count on the help of his two sons and that united power makes this team so strong. For example… father Kurt puts the amount of feed ready and the two sons feed the young birds. When the sons come home from school they let the young birds train and call them also in so that the young birds are not the whole time outside. Jochem and Xander help also with the darking of the young birds and when somebody needs to go to the club they are the first to join. So you can say that these two brothers are, just as their father Kurt, very fanatic pigeon fanciers.

The racing season 2012 was the best ever. The highlight of the season was without any doubt the 1st place in the national championship ace bird young birds middle distance with their top hen named “Mega Mindy”.


Kurt tells: “In 2008 we bought 40 birds by Johan Donckers. These birds were tested on the races and after all those years still 4 are left. Hereby the father of our national ace. We are also very successful with pigeons from Sus Heylen (Vorselaar) and the last years we did the best investment by Luc Van Mechelen (Oud-Turnhout). We can say that nowadays 75% till 80% of our pigeons are bred out Luc Van Mechelen birds. Before I forget we have also a few Verkerk pigeons.

Two years ago, with the help of fancier Staf Genen, 4 couples were especially selected for the breeding. Staf has his own method the judge pigeons and he told me that I need to breed as many young birds as possible out of those 4 couples. I tried it and believe it or not but all my best birds are born out of those 4 breeding couples. When Staf was at my place he said that on the left side of my young bird loft I would lose a lot of pigeons and I would never race good. He said this because a tree, which was standing behind that part of the loft, was not growing very good. The first year after he told this I did not believe him but I had to conclude that I lost many youngsters and that the best results were clocked on the right part of the young bird loft. For the racing season 2012 I built a new loft…and I saw that the condition of the young birds was much better.


Kurt continues his story “I have 13 breeding couples and they are housed on a very large breeding loft. I have also some couples under which I put the eggs of my most important breeders, this to have very fast several young birds out of my best breeders. Because we are still working people we concentrate ourselves on the young bird races. We breed two rounds and then we have every year a nice group of babies to wean.

The babies are weaned at an age of 22 days. We have experienced that it is good to wean the young birds early. They learn faster to eat the big grains and to find the drinker. In the begin the get a breeding mixture as feed because they still have to develop. When they start to train good around the loft we change the breeding mixture into a lighter young bird mixture. Last season the young birds trained from the start very well. Everybody could see that this group has always been in top condition. The young birds train only once a day. They are darked from half March till begin of June. In 2013 I will dark till middle of June.

The floor of the young bird loft is covered with woodchips and we do not clean the loft during the whole racing season. So we follow the “dry-droppings-method”. Only once or twice we put some extra woodchips on the loft. For us an ideal method.

We start to toss the young birds in April or Mai. Everything depends on the weather. I take the young birds with me on the road and I try to liberate them as soon as possible. I always hope that the young birds arrive home before my sons are going to school. If they are still home they can call them in and feed them some light mixture as a reward. It is always good that the young birds are well trained to enter the loft because certainly on the short distance every second is important.

We do not toss the young birds a lot during the racing season. If we do I take them again with me on the road and I liberate them in all directions. This is not always the ideal way, but very important for their orientation level.


During the racing season they receive the first days of the week 50% racing mixture (a mix of 3 brands) and 50% Wal Zoontjes mixture (Beyers). If they forecast a tailwind I feed the last 4 meals racing mixture. If they forecast headwind (heavier race) then I feed the last 6 meals a racing mixture.

When we feed, the birds can eat during 15 minutes as much as they want and then the food is taken away. On regular base I mix garlic oil and brewer’s yeast on the mixture. I also like to feed home-bred vegetables like salad. By arrival there are always electrolytes in the drinker. I feed also peanuts to the birds. This is not only a superb fat supplement but the young birds are also crazy about them. When they listen (read enter the loft) well…they get always peanuts as a reward.

On medical level we try to give as less as possible but if it is necessary to cure then we follow always the advices of the specialized vet.

When all the young birds are weaned and when I know that they all drink very well I start a 5 days cure against trichomoniose. Of course I let them vaccinate against paramyxo and if the adeno virus is attacking I have always a product ready in my closet so I can cure immediately. Before I start to toss the young birds I visit the vet and I follow his advices. To be honest…against ornithose I did not cure any time during the racing season 2012. Maybe this has all to see with the building of the new loft on which the ventilation is very good. Talking about ventilation…the ideal ventilation is different from loft to loft. Before the roof ventilation in the loft was standing 50cm till 60cm open. On my new loft I changed this to 3cm till 4cm and since then everything went better.


And then we come to the superb hen of who everybody talks. “Mega Mindy” is a very beautiful hen in the hand and has been sold to Herbots Jo who was also very impressed by the qualities of this national ace middle distance.

Mega Mindy” B12-6260032 won following top results:

1 Angerville 279b.
2 Angerville 1,441b. (double)

1 Orleans 201b.
5 Orleans 965b. (double)

2 Marne La Vallee 319b. (after a loftmate)
3 Marne La Vallee 1,452b.

2 Angerville 291b.
2 Angerville 1,452b. (double)

5 Angerville 191b.
13 Angerville 1,026b. (double)

11 Angerville 250b.
49 Angerville 1,208b. (double)

Father: B08-6298279 – original Johan Donckers.

G.F.: B06-6371268 – half-brother of 2nd provincial Cahors 741b. and 8th provincial Limoges 2.159b.

G.M.: B05-6328779 – won 1st Noyon 909b. – 1st Noyon 351b. – 3rd Noyon 350b. – 11 Noyon 567b. – 12 Noyon 1.208b.

Mother: B09-6349937 – original Frans Heylen

Daughter of his base couple “B96-6491716” x “B00-6144429”


Angerville: 1441 d.: 2-3-13-16-35-36...(16/22)

Angerville: 1142 d.: 10-11-12-89-102-131-146...(13/17)

Orleans (rampvlucht): 965 d.: 5-25-129 (3/18)

Angerville: 1452 d.: 1-2-13-139-446 (5/7)

Angerville: 1278 d.: 1-2-5-38-340-421 (5/5)

Angerville: 1451 d.: 2-3-81-133-282-387-408 (7/11)

Angerville: 1026 d.: 13-14-40-72-73-106-210 (7/7)


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