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Pigeon flying competition takes wing in Allahabad

Allahabad , Sun, 29 May 2011 ANI

Allahabad, May 29 (ANI): In this e-age where carrier pigeons have become obsolete, the idea of setting homing pigeons up for distance flying competition is catching on in Uttar Pradesh's Allahabad city.


In this competition, the competitors (pigeons) are not allowed to fly in pairs. The pigeon that spends maximum hours flying in the sky is declared as the winner, and hence its owner is awarded a trophy.


The competitions are held both in summers and winters.


"We fly them at 5:30 am. They have to make ten rounds of flight and if it fails to do so, then it is disqualified," said Banwari Pathak, a local.


"This is a very old tradition. We have been organising the pigeon competition for thirty to thirty five years. This is the summers' flight. Earlier there was winter flight too, which no longer exists," added Bigul Pathak, a pigeon owner.


Although it is seen as an entertaining sport, one cannot ignore the fact that the birds have to bear the brunt of the scorching heat. But then, it is said that pigeons are adaptable to heat, being their body structured in such a way.


"This is not an act of cruelty, as they are adaptable to summers bearing the heat. But they cannot fly in the extreme temperature conditions. And prefer staying in a cool place," said A.P. Singh, a local veterinarian.


It is indeed an amazing sight to watch the birds flying and witness them return to a place in order to accomplish the home-coming feat while flying non-stop. (ANI)


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