Thinking about a feathery side business
I’m thinking about starting a new side-business. I don’t know if it’ll make any money, but it would be an entertaining diversion as long as it lasts.
A few years ago, I snared a bunch of pigeons out of my dad’s barn in Riverton and took them to a dog trainer out by Albin. I just gave the birds to Ron, but I found out later that there’s actually a market for those rats with wings.
Most of the people who buy pigeons are dog trainers. They don’t pay a lot for them, but you can make a go of a pigeon ranch with sheer numbers. When I caught those birds out of my dad’s barn, there were only a few I couldn’t snag. But in just a couple of weeks, Dad was overrun with pigeons again. And they say rabbits reproduce fast! They ought to use pigeons for that example.
If you have the space and a complete lack of pride, you could build a pigeon coop with some two-by-twos and some chicken wire. Toss in a handful of birds, and in no time, you’ll have more squab than you know what to do with. You might want to line up some buyers before you start hatching them.
But it turns out dog trainers aren’t the only people buying these disgusting things. If you have the right kind of pigeons, you can sell them for an incredible amount of money. If you want to break into this market, you’ll have to learn about pigeon racing. Yep, that’s right, pigeon racing.
It’s a sport where you take your winged zingers to a starting location, then everyone turns the birds loose. The first one back to its home coop is the winner. In May, a racing pigeon from England sold for 16,000 British pounds, which converts to roughly $25,000. For a pigeon!
If you can’t get them to win races, you could always sell them as squab to French restaurants.
I think I’ll just stick to using them to train my bird dog, though. It’s a lot easier to explain to my friends.