(especially the interesting if rather unnerving factoid that "Young boys seem attracted to pigeons naturally, the way young girls seem to gravitate towards horses."
International Federation - USA = ifpigeon.com: "Welcome To The International Federation:
Welcome to the fascinating hobby of breeding and Racing Pigeons! Homing (racing) Pigeons are used for racing, similar to horse racing. Pigeon fanciers come from all walks of life. Rich, poor, minorities, young and old. It is a wonderful hobby, and financially available to people on all levels. The hobby is primarily male, but also have women fliers.
Young boys seem attracted to pigeons naturally, the way young girls seem to gravitate towards horses. Many older pigeon people started when they were young children in a time when it seemed every neighborhood had a pigeon loft.
Racing Pigeons are a very hardy species, easily housed and require no complex feeds compared to some exotic bird species. They adapt well to most any climate or geographic location. Racing Pigeons have a strong homing instinct and can be released to fly around their loft, as well be trained to return to their loft from up to 600 miles or more. Like humans, they are motivated by water and food, and secondly by a mate. They mate for life unless their mate is taken from them or dies.
Belgium, Holland and England have a huge fraternity of Racing Pigeon fanciers. The sport of Racing Pigeons in the United States is too very popular and growing. American Racing pigeon fanciers are some of the most enthusiastic in the world. The Internation"