Date: 03-12-12 18:16
What is it with the Chinese love for pigeon? ;-0
http://www.google.com/hostednews/afp/article/ALeqM5hKvfUbogH9ZTw96MvngY-p0FIDKg?docId=CNG.d22c90cee82c50c3e66227a50c7fa0ad.c1 A March 11, 2012 Agence France Presse (AFP) article titled "Belgian racing pigeons lure rich Chinese aficionados" found at the Google News web site.
By Philippe Siuberski (AFP) – 1 day ago
KORTRIJK, Belgium — Rich Chinese pigeon fanciers are offering tens of thousands of euros to buy Belgian champions, to the despair of local pigeon-lovers unable to compete in such sky-high auction bids.
Pigeon-breeding is an old Chinese passion, even though long-distance pigeon-racing has never caught on the way it has in northern Europe.
In Belgium, the Netherlands, northern France, and Britain pigeon-racing can take place over distances of over 1,000 kilometres (660 miles) with birds vying to return as quickly as possible to their home roost, their homing instinct allowing them to find the way.
Champion racing pigeons can win large sums in prize money for their owners.
In Belgium, pigeon-fancying had been on the decline in recent years, but the arrival of Chinese aficionados has changed the market's dynamic.
Pigeon racing in China goes back to the Ming dynasty, when they were used as carrier pigeons. Banned during the Cultural Revolution, it made a comeback in the 1970s.
According to Chinese state media, there are about 300,000 people in the country involved in the sport.
In late January, a rich Chinese industrialist Hun Zhen Yu came to Europe and paid 250,000 euros ($328,000) for "Special Blue", a world record for a champion of legend.
The bird's former owner, Pieter Veenstra from Holland, has sold 245 pigeons over the past few years for more than two million euros, according to the specialised Pigeon Paradise (PIPA) website which claims that half its customers are from China.
Rich Chinese fanciers will pay very large amounts "if the pigeon has won several prizes and is of good lineage," said Nikolaas Gyselbrecht, the head of PIPA, speaking on the sidelines of the second world pigeon fair in Kortrijk, Belgium.
"I think Belgium is the kingdom of homing pigeons," said one of the fair's visitors, Johnson Kiang from Taiwan.
But not everyone is pleased by the Chinese invasion.
"I find it too expensive. 200,000 euros, that's not a normal price," said Marcel Candenir, who travelled to the fair from Lille in northern France.
"It's daft, it's killing the sport, how do you expect a young person to start out?" asked fellow Frenchman Gilles Vanneuville.
Willy Anquinet, a 75-year-old from the village of Gooik, near Brussels, fell victim to this new golden goose-like craze.
In early February, one of his champions -- the "Black" -- was stolen from his pigeon loft.
"I'd been offered 15,000 euros (19,600 dollars), but I wanted 20,000 so that I could buy a new car," he said.
A few days after a visit by would-be customers, "the lock to the pigeon loft was broken".
"They stole "Black" and tried to take another, but just broke its wing," he said, saddened by the loss both of his champion, and by the injury that will force the second bird to retire from competition.
Marc De Cock, who owns 600 pigeons in Temse, northern Belgium, has invested in a top-of-the-range secure lock-up for his birds, some of which are worth 100,000 euros.
They are watched by 15 video cameras, have their own shower and solarium, a sort of sauna for pigeons, and are treated like top sport champions.
De Cock is looking to sell many of his birds to Asian clients.
"The Chinese attach a lot of importance to prestige. Even if they don't want to breed them, or race them, they want to buy a luxury pigeon much like an art collector would like to buy a Rubens or a Rembrandt," said De Cock who remains very discreet about his earnings.
In January, a Chinese guy paid a world record $328,000 (or 250,000 euros ) for a pigeon?!?!?! ;-0
One pigeon?!?!?! ;-0
The Chinese are pricing European pigeon fanciers out of the market? ;-0
Crazy ass Chinese. ;-0
http://blogs.wsj.com/chinarealtime/2012/02/24/in-taiwan-crime-on-the-wing/ A February 24, 2012 article titled "In Taiwan, Crime on the Wing" found at Murdoch's Wall Street Journal newspaper's China Realtime Report blog.
By Aries Poon
Is pigeon the new gold?
In Taiwan, the police of southern Pingdong and Tainan counties on Wednesday arrested seven people for “kidnapping” racing pigeons while the birds were flying to their master’s loft from their beginning point 150 miles offshore. The kidnappers set up gigantic nets along the route to trap the birds. Then they took the leg bands off the birds and the bands to the owner via their own pigeons.
It’s not clear how big the ransom demand was, but police said perpetrators of such crimes usually ask for a couple thousands of New Taiwan dollars, somewhere between US$100 and US$200.
Pigeon racing is big in Taiwan, so is bird kidnapping, police said. More than 30,000 Taiwanese race pigeons and another 50,000 are involved in raising and training birds there, according to various media reports.
The prize money of major competitions helps explain some of the allure. Increasing Chinese affluence has also impacted pigeon-racing: A Chinese buyer paid US$200,000 for a highly pedigreed racing pigeon in a Belgium auction last month. But police say the money tied up in the sport also increases its allure for criminals and those in underground gambling.
Pigeon-napping is big on Taiwan?!?!?!? ;-0
What is it with these crazy ass Chinese? ;-0
I mean they're not even eating the pigeons so why buy or kidnap them? ;-0
Snippet from an old (March 8, 2011, last year) thread titled "China's Elite Carrier Pigeon Squadron" (found at the following link: http://www.asiawind.com/forums/read.php?f=11&i=152687&t=152687 ) in which Kobo answers an article suggesting that China is using messenger pigeons to supplement her military should her technology be knocked out in wartime:
Squab is what pigeons are called when referred to as food. ;-0
Snippets from the Wikipedia entry for "Squab_(food)":
In culinary terminology, squab (probably of Scandinavian descent; skvabb, meaning "loose, fat flesh") is a young domestic pigeon or its meat. The word squab was formerly used to describe young birds from several species, but has since come to mean young pigeons and their meat. Squabs are raised to the age of roughly a month before being killed for eating; they have reached adult size but have not yet flown. The practice of domesticating pigeon as livestock may have come from the Middle East; historically, squabs or pigeons have been consumed in many civilizations, including Ancient Egypt, Rome and Medieval Europe.
In Chinese cuisine, squab is a part of celebratory banquets for holidays such as Chinese New Year, usually served deep-fried. Squabs are sold live in Chinese marketplaces to assure freshness, but they can also be dressed in two styles. "Chinese-style" (Buddhist slaughter) birds retain their head and feet, whereas "New York-dressed" (Confucian slaughter) birds retain their entrails, head and feet. The greatest volume of U.S. squab is currently sold within Chinatowns.
I didn't know that the greatest volume of squab sold in the US is within her Chinatowns. ;-)
Kobo's eaten so much squab that it's surprising he hasn't sprouted wings and pooped all over your car windshield. ;-)
P.S. Still can't believe a guy paid $328,000 for a pigeon that is never going to see the dinner table. Tsk tsk tsk :Kobo shaking his head in disbelief smilie: