The History of the Cooper Colony
In the early 1980’s I purchased birds from Deweerdt and Vermote in Belgium. These two top fanciers had exchanged birds with good results from the distances I wanted to race at, which was up to 650 miles 1000+ kms, but I wanted them fast enough to also win in the shorter races as at that time I didn’t have much room to house a lot of birds. I purchased a daughter of Liesbet 1st National, 2nd International Barcelona, a son of Spiritus 1st National Cahors, a daughter of Filip 4th National Cahors plus other National prizes. Filip was the Grandsire of Emile 1st International Bordeaux. Later we purchased three children of Emile, two sons and a daughter. They all bred good birds for us, one bred Farm Boy multi International prize winner, another bred Half Blood Prince 3rd National Dax, and one is the Grandsire of George 1st National Tarbes.
After I had brought the birds home, it did not take long before these birds started to show there potency for breeding top class birds that were winning when other couldn’t clock. They are a family of birds that excell when the odds are against them. When it is hot and the wind is in the North East returns are usually poor, but not for this family. When the wind is against you, many would not expect to do well, but this family are a family of “wind cheaters” they can hold their own against the strong winds and help you to win when others all around you are struggling to compete.
My birds today still have these bloodlines running through them. The mother of George, our Grand National Tarbes winner was bred from a daughter of “350” when he was paired to “Gold Dust”. “350” was a son of “The Old Deweerdt “ and “Gold Dust” was a daughter of Bulldog, these two birds were bred from my original 1980 imports.
“350” and “Gold Dust” were a fantastic breeding pair, they bred pigeons to win at the highest level, but also bred birds which themselves were good breeders. Two Champions from “350” and “Gold Dust” were “Nicholls” and “21”. These two cocks, a nest pair won many top prizes, from topping the Federation from 45 miles, 80kms through to winning 3rd National Pau 559 miles 880 kms against the wind. On that day there was a strong west wind all day. “Nicholls” had to fly from the south of France, cross the English Channel with the wind blowing hard into his side, yet he still managed to beat any other pigeon, west of Portsmouth in the middle of England. He lost the race by five minutes, which after flying over fourteen hours was a marvellous achievement.”350″ and “Gold Dust” also bred “Fiddle” who won 2nd National Perpignan and 6th National Pau.
When I retired a good racing cock, I always made sure I also had good daughters of them in the stock loft. This way you do not lose the winning genes and can keep you at the top of your game. These daughters would be paired to other top racers of mine and then their children paired back into the original retired racers. JW” who won a sprint National from 320 kms and also won 9th National from over 800 kms is a son of “Titch”, who is a son of “53” who was bred in 1984 from the original imports. It is very important to study the breeding of your birds or any future birds you may be buying and see if you can trace a history of winning genes back for many generations. “George”, 1st Grand National Tarbes is also related back to these original imports being bred from a brother to “JW”. This is a very good quality of this family, not just do the very top Champion birds breed good birds, but their children and brothers and sisters to them also breed Champions. In many lofts this may be an exaggeration but we have record books going back to 1984, and they are one of our most treasured possessions, as they tell the life story of our family of birds.