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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
So trap training my YB's has been for the most part a success. I've got them trapping for food. They arn't pros yet but they got the idea :D. I plan to keep them in the settling cage for another week or so. When would be the best time to let them out of the settling cage and out around the outside of the loft area and then how long before until I can toss them for distances?

Henry
 

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Let me tell you how I do mine...

As soon as they turn a month and a week old, I will put them to train on the trap door training...I will do this for about a whole 3 weeks, the longest will be a month...It'll get longer, depending on the BOP's situations, I will take off the cage and let them out on their own with out the OB's out...Eventually they will fly around or maybe trying to show-off, that they can take off where they're standing...Always have the option B, in case they went higher than you are expecting them to go to have some of the OB out (only if you think its necessary), the other YB's might take off but more than likely they might follow or sometimes they might not...So who ever went a little farther will see that his/her buddies are on the same roof or spot where he/she left off...Make sure that they know how to go on top of the loft...Once they are start flying on their own, from roof to roof or maybe around your house, then you can let the OB out so they will be jealous to fly like the OB's...Never leave them out on their own, not even for a few minutes...Good luck Henry...
 

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A Little different Approach

My method of Yb's is not even close to what is recommended by all the experts but it is what I had to do out of necessity a couple of years ago and found it to be much better for me when settling the Yb's. I do not use a settling cage but have a window above the trap (drop trap) that the birds can look out of before release. The window is then opened and the Yb's are allowed to come out and go in as they please with the OB's. They have hair mousse applied to the wings for the first couple of weeks to prevent fly-offs and they learn how to come in and out, fly down to the ground and back up to the landing board, and up to the roof. The birds are NEVER left out unsupervised. (Do not let out in the rain) After 2 weeks of this they are then given a bath to remove the hair mousse and are allowed to loft fly with the Ob's for 2 weeks. (Now they can be out in the rain) Then they are all seperated and the Ob's and Yb's fly at different times of the day with Ob's out in the AM and the Yb's out in the evening until we are ready for road training. My loss rate doing it this way has been less than 10% and this includes fly-offs and hawk hits. The Ob's will pile in the minute they see the hawk and the Yb's follow and are taught that the hawk is danger.
Ken
 

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Discussion Starter · #4 ·
Thanks Oliver - I don't have any OB's so a plan B is not an option, lol. I'll have to just cross my fingers and hope they don't fly off to far to where they can't make it back to the loft. So I should wait up to 2 more weeks before I let them out of the settling cage....I'll do that....I'll be with them all day if I have too when I let them outside for the first time!
 

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Discussion Starter · #7 ·
My method of Yb's is not even close to what is recommended by all the experts but it is what I had to do out of necessity a couple of years ago and found it to be much better for me when settling the Yb's. I do not use a settling cage but have a window above the trap (drop trap) that the birds can look out of before release. The window is then opened and the Yb's are allowed to come out and go in as they please with the OB's. They have hair mousse applied to the wings for the first couple of weeks to prevent fly-offs and they learn how to come in and out, fly down to the ground and back up to the landing board, and up to the roof. The birds are NEVER left out unsupervised. (Do not let out in the rain) After 2 weeks of this they are then given a bath to remove the hair mousse and are allowed to loft fly with the Ob's for 2 weeks. (Now they can be out in the rain) Then they are all seperated and the Ob's and Yb's fly at different times of the day with Ob's out in the AM and the Yb's out in the evening until we are ready for road training. My loss rate doing it this way has been less than 10% and this includes fly-offs and hawk hits. The Ob's will pile in the minute they see the hawk and the Yb's follow and are taught that the hawk is danger.
Ken
This is a very interesting method but I can't apply this because I can't leave my loft open I have prisoner birds that I keep in there also and I don't have OB's to show the youngsters the ropes....Maybe after I've settled these younsters and they become OB's I can try this out on some YB's next year!:D

Thanks for the reply...Henry
 

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Dave, Dont knock it till you've tried it. Have you tried it? What is your distaste for mousse or is it just cause it is different and something that not everyone uses. I learned this method from a pigeon flyer who has won more races and cash in one year than you and me combined in our life. It amazes me how some folks will knock a method without ever having tried it because they are an EXPERT at his sport. Put your method up against mine and I guarantee my flyoffs are less than yours.
 

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My method of Yb's is not even close to what is recommended by all the experts but it is what I had to do out of necessity a couple of years ago and found it to be much better for me when settling the Yb's. I do not use a settling cage but have a window above the trap (drop trap) that the birds can look out of before release. The window is then opened and the Yb's are allowed to come out and go in as they please with the OB's. They have hair mousse applied to the wings for the first couple of weeks to prevent fly-offs and they learn how to come in and out, fly down to the ground and back up to the landing board, and up to the roof. The birds are NEVER left out unsupervised. (Do not let out in the rain) After 2 weeks of this they are then given a bath to remove the hair mousse and are allowed to loft fly with the Ob's for 2 weeks. (Now they can be out in the rain) Then they are all seperated and the Ob's and Yb's fly at different times of the day with Ob's out in the AM and the Yb's out in the evening until we are ready for road training. My loss rate doing it this way has been less than 10% and this includes fly-offs and hawk hits. The Ob's will pile in the minute they see the hawk and the Yb's follow and are taught that the hawk is danger.
Ken

I won't knock it, but I also won't try it. I can't imagine "moussing" 40 YB's and surely the stuff doesn't last for 2 weeks? AND.........it sounds like your OB's and YB's use the same trap/loft? Is that correct? For me, my OB's trap into a totally different building, and I wouldn't want my YB's learning to trap into the wrong building. That's no good. Everyone has to do what they have to do to fit THEIR situation. Doesn't make ANY of them wrong or right.......just different. ;)
 

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Renee, It is alot easier than it sounds to do. I handle my birds alot anyway to check for mites, mouth, eyes, etc. A handful of mouse will do 5 birds and my kids catch the birds and I open the wing and only mousse the top half of the last 5 flights in one quick swipe. It will last longer than 2 weeks if the birds are not allowed a bath to remove the mousse. For years some of the old timers in the sport would rubber band their birds flights but this always seemed to do damage to the flights.
No my Ob's and Yb's are flown in seperate rooms of the same loft. When I am settling the Yb's I will allow 5-8 Ob's into the Yb section as the "teachers". These are generally Ob's that are too old to race. The Ob's were in the Yb room last year and are familiar with the trap as it all looks the same from outside. I close up one side when I want the birds to trap in one and not the other. The traps are only 2 feet apart from each other and one goes to one room and the other to the other room. They are not in the least bit hesitant to trap. Not sure if it is because this is because I have done this since this loft was built or if it is because there is always only one landing board available at a time and when the other one is closed it looks like a solid wall from outside made out of the same exterior material on the loft.
 

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While you guys are discussing hair styles and the like....:rolleyes: :p

I do different things depending on how lazy I feel on that particular day. I like putting the birds out on "The Landing Board" as early as possible.....before they can really fly. I do use a settling cage, but in most cases only for a day or two. I have always figured the hard part was getting them to figure out how to trap back in. Once they have done that a couple of times, then I don't worry about it. They train themselves or get lost. If one starts early, like at 28 days or so....I lose very few, and then mainly when a hawk has been involved. You have had them out in a settling cage for long enough in my way of thinking. Open the loft, and let them find their way around. The only suggestion I might add, is don't let a lot of them all out at the same time. If you have a hawk attack, you don't want your whole team flying to the four winds and end up losing half or more of them at the same time. Depending on the numbers of pigeons you have, I would split them into groups so the risk of "group panic" does not wipe you out in one bad incident.

Don't even think about road training then for about another two months.
 

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Mousse is something new to me but I'll stay with how I do mine...Thanks for sharing whitesnmore...

Henry Let me add something more...Since your birds will be feeling like a rookie outside the loft, make sure that they are half way hungry...The best time to train them is in the PM ½ an hour before sunset, this way they will know that they can't be flying all over and stays around or on top of the loft...But whatever time that you feel like to let them out for the first time, it all depends on you...Also make sure that they will or they are responding to your whistle/feed in can shake or whatever kind of method you are using to let them in...Always remember that there is always one that is too stubborn to go in and that bird might attract another one not to go in as well...Like a good lady said "Hunger is the name of the game" ;)...
 

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Well i guess it comes down to each his/her own. I LOVE settling cages/Aviaries, it lets them look around(a lot) teaches them to Fear hawks, yes the hawks will bother them in the settling cage BUT will not hurt them.
And they learn what a hawk is and feel VERY threatened by them, enough even a eight week older gets pretty hawk savy.... Yes they spook, but can not go any where, SO after a few weeks of this when i would let them go, GEEE! The hawks were sort of bored trying tom get them already, the young birds were REALLY watching out for them on first release. WITH a good settling pen, or an Aviary, which i prefer.. They KNOW where home is, and even if they do get spooked they seem to find their way back... With a settling pen or Aviary wing strong is not an issue to me... BUT if you just set them on a landing board, ect., for a few days they have little time to get their bearings. OR see that hawks want to "Hurt" them...Once they were ALL wing strong, i opened the end of the Settling cage/ aviary about two hours before dark, and let them come out on their own, did this for about a week or so.
After a week or so they started flying around the loft like crazy.Hawk strikes? yes, young bird loses? hardly any. NO MATTER what method you use, you had better give them the VIEW of the sky as much as possible!
Than there was the year i had a hernia operation, i was way behind on getting them on the road,(Hurt to sit in the truck!) but they had been loft flying around the loft for two weeks Mind you they were forced into the Settling Cage/ Aviary for about a month before for at least 1/2 a day almost ever day with food, and water.(they were VERY wing strong)
Well i did something i would never recommend to any one, but it worked, i took them first toss about 30 miles. They came back ,true they were slow only lost ONE. But it was the best young bird race season i had all the years i flew... And they were the toughest flyers as a team i have had, or even senior members of my club had that year. With few exceptions, only one first, but always 3 or 4 in the top 10..... I would rather have 3 or four in the top ten over a first any day, because luck decides FIRST in the top ten. I.E loft location, drag ect, ect, JMHO Dave
 

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I share my experience to you so you are aware of it and some other members will share theirs too...

Henry, here's one more thing I forgot to tell you, I let them out the same way I do when I'm training them on the trap-door training, this way they will think that the cage is still there and they are still stuck in it and nowhere to go, of course they will be surprised when they don't see anything blocking their view, so the first thing they will do is flap their wings and see if they will get off from the landing board, once they lift-up and they got the control of their wings, they will try to take off higher and higher and land back down on top of the loft...Wish you all the luck and DO NOT RUSH...You got plenty of time, follow your instinct, if you think you have been training them for a whole month then you can try to let them out...

I always update my yahoo calendar everyday about the events with my bird...It's one important reminder for me...From laying the 1st egg to possible hatching day...I put the band # of the birds who is doing the TDT (trap-door training) for the day or any day I jot it down...Even giving them some garlic in water I write them down or the time they don't fly...Anything about my pigeons daily events I put it in my calendar, if you do this, things will go smooth and you'll be on top of your duties...
 

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My old way before I discovered hawks:

I trap train them around 3 weeks old. I then release them around 4 weeks old barely flying. Their goal actually was just to look around and fly from the ground to the landing board. They really can't fly that much around 4 weeks old. After they route and range I start road training them which is usually around 3 months old.

The new way after I discovered hawk:

I trap train them around 3 or 4 weeks old. I keep them inside for another 2 weeks and not release them. Basically I want them to be wing strong. Then I release them. This may coincide with their eye color change which is usually around 2 months old. After they route and range, then I road toss them. Now I am actually thinking whether I really need to road train them because I don't even race. I don't know whether I will road train this time.
 

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Discussion Starter · #19 ·
Thanks to everyone who has commented on this thread! Great stuff guys!....I have a clear idea on what method to use and that will be the traditional settling cage method. I will keep the cage on until I feel they are ready to roam around the outside of the loft and I won't road train until 2-3 months after.

Oliver - I have a loft management spreadsheet that I created in microsoft excel to keep track of the happenings with my birds. It really helps me to remember things!
 
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