"THE BOSS"  -  DC - COCK

EMIEL DE WEERDT 

Click on Picture for PDF Pedigree 

Carnival City -LTT auction 2011
Breeder -  John vd Bos.(SA Pigeon Auctions)
Father -'HANNAH' was bred by Mr and Mrs Andy Gregson from Great Britain (Bred from pure DE WEERDT pigeons)
Mother is a Dean Jooste  bird bred from a Van Breemen/Scrooyens Cock and a Meulemans/Andre Carelsen Hen.
Her Mother are progeny of the well known 'GREENEYES' Oscar Hen from Andre Carelsen.

 Emiel Deweerdt of Kourtemark

 Posted by Superman-Loft on June 7, 2009 at 5:37 PM

    Emiel Deweerdt and his two handsome sons Bernard and Fred

  Imagine yourself riding your two wheeled bike down avery old Belgium road about forty years ago. The ride you will admit is veryunstable, shaky to say the least. Now try to carry with you four very, very valuableeggs in your pocket. How valuable you ask? They are worth approximately onemonth’s salary. Are you just a little hesitant to continue riding? I don't blame you. However, I know of someone who completed this ride and founded his family of famous pigeons with those eggs. The gentleman's name is EMIEL DEWEERDT of Kourtemark,Belgium. But, more about this infamous bicycle ride later in thearticle

Right from the beginning of our discussion it wasapparent to me that the success this loft has enjoyed is truly due to a teameffort by the entire family.  Emiel reinforced this fact by always making reference to "us","we", and "our" during conversations. 

BACKGROUND

 As I mentioned earlier some of Emiel's beginnings in thesport were rather original and the following anecdote just a trifleunorthodox.  When reminiscing about hisfirst pigeons he told us that they were part of a wedding dowry. He receivedfour pigeons from his father-in-law or as Emiel so affectionately statesit," I got four birds and a beautiful blonde". All this took place in1947.  

 These four birds formed the basis of a family whichscored well at short distances.  They were exhausted after 300 km. In time, Emiel decided to take part in both the mid-fond and fond races. It was then when he made the decision that was to form the nucleus of the famous DeWeerdt Family of pigeons. He went to the top winning loft, that year in and year out enjoyed success at all racepoints. 

This loft belonged to Charles Van der Espt. In order to purchase from van derEspt, Emiel had to put aside his earnings as a clerk until he accumulated 5,000Belgium Francs. This along with another 5,000 Belgium Francs from his fatherrepresented a month’s earnings. 

The10,000 Belgium Francs purchased him "Four Eggs". That's right four eggs and we think our purchases today are expensive.It once again proves to us that if you want quality you will have to pay forit. These eggs he very gingerly drove home on his bicycle .This is the memorable ride that I mentioned at the beginning of the article. Only 3 of the eggs hatched but they were sufficient to produce Champions within two years.This was the beginning of a great career. In 1967 the decision was made to go back to van der Espt for more.

 SELECTIONS

 At the end of the season it was the practice that all ofthe young birds would be scrutinized by all three DeWeerdts, Emiel, Bernard and Freddy.They each rated every pigeon giving it a mark if they felt it should remain or a score of zeroif it was to be culled. For a bird to remain it must have had at least two marks in other wards two of the three fanciers must have approved of the pigeon.  In this way there seemed to be an excellentcheck and balance and avoided any favourites that might otherwise be kept.  It also provided for a lot of dialogue which definitely stimulates both interest and knowledge.  I dare say that most, if not all of us fanciers would benefit, ifwe were to have two excellent pigeon flyers to assist us annually with ourculling. During the winter Emiel and his two sons, Fred and Bernard, decided onthe next years matings.

 This was done on paper. When the birds became tooclosely related it was decided that they needed a viable cross.

 They chose Marcel Desmet who hadpure Stichelbauts. Here they purchased twosisters which they chose from twenty to twenty-five hens.  The sire of these hens was First Prize National Limogesand his sire was an InternationalWinner at Barcelona. Before leaving, Marcel told Emiel that they had better take yet anothersister, a very small blue pied. After a very shortperiod this cross proved to be outstanding, especially the very small bluepied.  Marcel had told Emiel that the"babies" which he referred to the very small ones, were the best for the long distance races.

 METHODS OFBREEDING

 I believe one of the highest compliments that can bebestowed on a fancier is to be asked to mate one's birds. Bernard DeWeerdt has been asked by fanciers to visit and actually mate their birds. One fancier paid Bernard's flight to England in order to benefit from his expertise in thisarea. The results were very good. I asked him what he considers when mating birds for others. Bernardsaid that he mates birds for others that are only from his, the DeWeerdt, stock.

 His reason for this is that you need the experience with the bloodlines.Bernard felt that you must know the "family of birds and the origin in order to mate themproperly".

 The DeWeerdt's donot believe in close inbreeding (i.e.) brother to sister, and favour linebreeding.They have had good success with birds that are related back to their third or fourth generations.

 The colour of the birds has no bearing on thematings. 

 They take no notice of the eye and have never paidattention to it when choosing mates.After winning First International Barcelona an eye sign expert told Bernard what bird to mateit to according to eye sign. Bernard did just the oppositewith excellent results.  If a bird is a little on the large side they will try to choose a bird that is medium in size and build rather than another large bird or small one.

 In Belgium there are advocates of inbreeding, others ofline breeding, and still the fanciers who believe in judicial crossing. Ifthere was ever any doubt about this then a thorough reading of the newest bookout entitled "THEELITE" should rectify any discrepancies.

 The DeWeerdt's success has stemmed from linebreeding.When they do bring in a bird it has to fit their criteria. Generally, it hasone parent as a DeWeerdt bird, and the other must be either a top racer inInternational competition, or a top breeder.   

 The DeWeerdt family is in a very unique position in thattheir loft is among the top lofts in Belgium and therefore they may choose justwhat they are going to bring into their loft. 

 They choose only the very best in Belgium when theyconsider it necessary to add new blood.

 Emiel and Bernardfelt that to only cross pigeons would be very dangerous and very soon lead todisaster. You must havepatience and really know the value of your own bloodlines.

 In the last twenty years they have only introduced threepigeons into their lofts. Even these introductions usually have DeWeedtbloodlines in them such as the hen from a brother of P. Lemahieu"sprovincial winner (Limoges) when it was paired to a daughter of"Kristof" off their famous "Filip".

 The Results that this loft has compiled over the yearsis phenomenal and ranks them amongst the very top lofts in Belgium. In 1984they were winners of the most coveted title, "West European SuperMarathon" and First "Europe Cup".

 "What is the West European Super Marathon?"For this Marathon you must nominate two pigeons in the following long distanceevents; Pau, Barcelona, Marseille, and Perpignan.  Bernard told us that, "you must win top prizes with yournominated pigeon or you will not win".

 n 1984, they were 4th International Pau with their 1stNominated pigeon,

210th International at Barcelona with 1st Nominatedpigeon,

120th Marseille with 2nd Nominated Bird,

and 100th Perpignan with 1st Nominated bird.

 These results enabled them to win the West EuropeanSuper Marathon. In 1987 they won General National Championship of Belgium KBDB.

 To enter the Marathon you pay an entry fee. There were400 fanciers who participated in this championship. If you have the firstnominated bird you get 400 points, with the second person getting 399 etc.There are sub-competitions which again the DeWeerdt's did very well in. Emiellikes to see his birds "in the top one percent".  He also told me that his International andNational winners are kept and that he resists all of the very tempting offers.This is a decision that he has never regretted. Interestingly enough I justfinished reading an article on Andre VanBruane and he mentions that he shouldnever have sold his International winner. Such are the decisions that onegenerally does not get a second chance at.

 This loft has many winners and top prize winning birdsin both National and International races.

  "Spiritus" is areal favourite and ranks among the very best in the world. Here are hisresults;   '77 he won 1st Club Cahors(234 birds),

12th National Cahors (4,372 birds),

1st Club Limoges (328 birds) 40th National Limoges(9,674 birds)

and the next year '78 1st Prize National Cahors (4,101birds),

23rd National Montauban.

 Due to the fact that Emiel races on the Natural system as wellthey have some outstanding hens in their lofts. "Anja" won 1st Hens BarcelonaInternational and "Liesbet"won 1st National Barcelona in "81.

 PERSONAL OBSERVATIONS

 As we walked through the spacious lofts at Kortemark youcould easily point to many "house -keeping" attributes that aid totheir success. As in all top lofts, this loft kept about 6 to 8 birds where youcould put 30 to 40 pigeons.

 The Widowhood cocks lofts were very well kept. The cockswere let out for two exercise periods a day and there seemed to be no specifictime for these releases.

 The Natural hens would go out in the afternoon.

Attention was paid to all of the happenings in the loftand there was nothing left to chance. For instance, when they set up a certainhen on youngsters for a race and her mate starts to look at her, he is thenremoved and possibly all of the other cocks.

 This reminds me of Vic Robinson's practice of taking allof the birds out of the loft with the exception of those that were chosen forthe National. This must enhance the health of the other birds and aid inbringing top form.

 The Widowhood cocks generally only see their bowl beforedeparting for the pannier. 

 Yearling cocks will see their hens for the first fewraces.  The Natural birds are given ahopper and allowed to have access to feed all day.

 Extra corn is given to both the Widowhood and Naturalbirds before long (Fond) distance racing starts.

 The widow hens are kept in very spacious aviaries andfed a light mixture of barley with racing mixture.

Their young birds are raced on many different methods.Due to the range of lofts many different practices can take place such asnatural, semi-widowhood and perch.

 

They also like young hens feeding small youngsters inthe nest. Interestingly enough I just finished reading "Pigeon 86"and a number of the Belgian Young Bird National winners were raced to the nestin various nest positions. Also when I was interviewing pigeon fanciers inDetroit (U.S.A.) they mentioned to me that almost all of the winners in youngbird racing are to the nest. 

 

The birds were very buoyant with an abundance of silkyfeathers. The wings were very supple. I noticed that all the Champions wehandled in both Belgian and Hollandhad very supple wings thatopened almost by themselves and seemed to have an abundance of elasticity.The birds were small to medium in size. The eyes showed depth and the iris' were rich in colourwith an almost "oil painting" look. 

 I had seen eyes with this depth in many of the lofts in the Steenbergen area of Holland especially P. Lazeroms and M. Van Geels.

 ADVICE TOBEGINNERS

 I asked the DeWeerdt's what advice they would give to anovice of today.

 Emiel said to,"look for the man who is at the top of his country". If possible he felt that this person should have been a winner for the last "20-25 years" or as he said, "alifetime".

 Emiel cautions the novice, "be careful of the newstars, for some are born and in two years are gone".

 Emiel felt it was imperative to visit the loft you have chosen and to study the background of the birds and the fancier’s methods. This should be a fancier who does well at all distances.

 Next, he suggested, you should ask to see not only his results,but also those of otherfanciers who have performed well with his pigeons.

 I was most impressed when Emiel shared "TWO HUGE SCRAPBOOKS" filled with testimonials and letters from fanciers all over the world who have enjoyed success with their family of pigeons.

 His next advice was," if you are ready to pay his prices, buy at least 4 pigeons to start with. Practice the methods of this fancier where possible," and Emiel feels that, "within three years the OLD MAN should be PROUD to say you are a CHAMPION".

 CONCLUSION

 In conclusion, I must say that visiting the loft of the DeWeerdt's was not only informative, but I was moved by their sincerity and honesty. I was left with the impression that, yes, there is a FUTURE IN RACING PIGEONS