Home > Fair > Education > You Be The Judge > YOU BE THE JUDGE PIGEON




What the judge looks for in the pigeon:

Development and condition of feathers.

The shape of the body, size and weight, especially in utility breeds.

Robust even color and markings and proper beak and eye color, depending on the breed.

Birds that are in prime condition and health.

What the judge looks for in the show pen:

A good exhibitor is polite and courteous to other exhibitors and pays attention to both the animal and to the judge at all times.

Pigeons are grouped into classes for judging purposes. Example (old blue cock, young white hen, etc.)

Pigeons are judged in individual cages or in groups by placing them in a large judging cage together.

The judge handles the bird and may stroke back feathers to check for fullness.


Cock: male over 1 year of age

Hen: female over 1 year of age

Young Bird: pigeon younger than 1 year of age

Self: a solid color pigeon

Barred: 2 lines of dark feathers across secondaries

Bald Head: pigeon with a white head

Primaries: the first 10 feathers in the wing

Secondaries: the feathers on the bottom of the wing

You give it a try and see how your placings compare to the judges (fill in the exhibitors number):

Your Choice

1st. place

2nd place

3rd place

Judges Decision

1st place

2nd place

3rd place


*Most of our domesticated pigeons have a common ancestor, the Rock Dove Pigeon.

*Racing Homing Pigeons have been clocked flying 92.5 mpg average speed on a 400 mile race.

*Homing Pigeons have been known to fly 700 miles in a day.

*Noah's Dove was most likely a Homing Pigeon.

*They were used by the Greeks more than 5,000 years ago.

*They can and are ready to breed at the age of 5 to 6 months.

*Both parents feed their young milk.

*They have been known to see very well over a 26 mile distance.

*A pigeon is about 13 inches from beak to tail.

*Unless separated, pigeons mate for life.

*A full grown pigeon has about 10,000 feathers.

*They have been known to live over 30 years.

*The pigeon beats its wings up to ten times per second, while maintaining a heart rate of 600 beats per minute up to 16 hours without rest.

*Pigeons are the only bird in the world that do not have to lift their head to swallow water.

*The ability to hear sounds 11 octaves below middle C allow the pigeons to detect earthquakes and electrical storms.
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