News Updates

4/6/2020


High Desert Flyers,


I hope you are all staying healthy and well. Last week brought some nasty weather and a 6.5 magnitude earthquake a few hours north of us.  This week is much different as we have been able to get tosses in the last four days and it looks like the next three are looking promising before some high winds might be coming to town.  


Tosses have been progressing well. Yesterday we took them 5 miles and released them in 2 groups and they made a couple of circles and headed straight for home. Both groups beating me home. Today we did the same but broke them into 10 groups, about 60 birds per group. The idea is to create more independent flyers so that way when they are 200 miles away and alone they are more apt to be able to find their way home. The groups today made many more circles and each group headed in different directions. Some groups took 10 minutes to come home, while others took an hour or two. It ended up being a good educational day of the valley for them to navigate home. We are still out 16 but hopeful, most will make it back. Tomorrow we will do 5 miles again and the returns should be much better. Again think of today as a good learning experience for your birds. 


Once we get further out we will have the clockings live for you. For short distances, most birds on arrival fly around the loft and play around, which is what we prefer at this time. 


Kenny and Corey



3/29/2020


High Desert Flyers,


The last two weeks have brought some overall great weather here at the loft. Today was a bit rainy but we were able to get your birds out to enjoy. Birds have been loft flying about every day since the last update. All birds are going 45 minutes +. Overall they are looking really good and ripping around the loft. They have lots of spunk and life in the air. Your birds have really come into form.


Road training will begin this week. We have some days that are supposed to be snowy and rainy in the early part of the week. If it is nice enough we will be getting them down the road. The goal is to do the 125-mile activation race in the first part of May. The 380-mile race is scheduled for May 30th.


I will be putting together a list of free perches for 2021 and posting that on the website. Please verify that I get your numbers right. Anything that had a paid perch for this year and was lost before road training gets a free perch for the following year. We try and make things fair for you as there are so many things that can happen to your birds in a year's time. We have lost most of the birds you would not want to go down the road. It looks like we will be taking about 585 into road training.


The internet has been down the past week at the loft. We will get that resolved here shortly. I used hotspot from my phone to put a couple of the past week's loft flights on Wincompanion.

As a side note, we are posting our club members Unikon clocks on pigeondepot.com. About half the clocks are currently posted. If you or some club members you know are interested please take a look. If you are interested in multiple, please contact us and we could make you a deal.


If you have any questions please ask.


Thanks,


Kenny and Corey



3/16/2020


High Desert Flyers,


We have had some great weather the last few weeks here in Southern Idaho. Other than rainy days this past weekend and some windy days they have been out everyday getting some wing time. We took advantage of this weekend and got a hand inventory done, wormed them with moxidectin plus, looked over wings for broken flights, and just overall health of the birds. We did find 3 birds whose bands were not working and those have been fixed. With handling all the birds you get a feel of how they are coming into the condition and overall they are handling quite nice. They are all starting to trim down, have a nice muscle mass and starting to feel buoyant in the hand.


In terms of flying, they are in a wide range of places right now. The bottom tier fly for 30 minutes, the middle tier is flying 30-45 minutes and the top tier is flying 1-hour plus. The birds are at the point they all will come into form quickly. Hoping by the end of the month they will all be ready to start going down the road. This is always the enjoyable part of having your birds, watching them in the sky.


Any question questions or concerns please ask. 


Kenny and Corey



2/23/2020


 High Desert Flyers,


We had a beautiful Sunday here at the loft. The birds enjoyed a bath and some flight time around the loft. All the birds were kicked out and we were able to run wincompanion. The count of 607 should be pretty accurate. We did have a few casualties throughout the course of the winter. Some birds for whatever reason aren't able to make it when the weather gets nasty cold. The next week of weather is looking promising.


By the recommendation of several people, we have added the Sky Puppet to try and help keep the hawks away as the birds are out. Hawks are out of control here like everywhere else. 


On a side note, our club is switching clocking systems. If anyone or club is interested in buying some please contact us. We are selling our Unikons clocks. We have 5 old clocks, 3 champs, 20 or so sensors with a couple of boosters, club antenna, and lots of extra cables. One champ has been modified to run a one loft race. Anyone wanting to start a one loft race, could be a cheap route to go for a clock. We used it for many years before switching to the Tauris.


Hope breeding season is going well for everyone. 


Kenny and Corey 



2/4/2020


 High Desert Flyers,


Last week we had a little break in the weather. A few days were in the 40's, sunny, and no wind. That is a great trio to have. We were able to open up the loft a few days and let birds free loft. Only about half ended up going out so we didn't run wincompanion. Didn't force them out as they have sat for 2 months. 


This week we are back with snow on the ground and cold. Overall the birds are doing well. Whenever we have a nice day we will get them out. Once we have them all out we will run wincompanion for you. The typical February for us is similar to January; cold, windy, and snow. So we shall see when that happens. 


Best of luck to you all who are getting ready to send out youngsters for the 2020 young bird races. Don't forget to do your research about shipping rates since dimensions are now included. If you try to ship a huge box you might have a heart attack with the price increases.


Also, check into shipping via airlines. If you live near a big enough airport it can end up being a lot cheaper if you like to ship out lots of birds. Or you can team up with people in your area to ship out larger quantities of birds. I will be doing some checking here soon and let you know what I come up with to see if that will be an option for our 2021 race. We live a few miles from an airport. Here is a link to Daniel Hash's blog about shipping via airlines. Just food for thought and it could be a great direction to go. 


Kenny and Corey
 

 

1/14/2020


High Desert Flyers,


Since the last update, not much has changed. Cold weather and we are continually getting hit with snowstorms. Typically not a lot of snow but enough to keep the ground white every day. Birds look good. They continue to be on lockdown and are eating lots of food. Expect the same for the next month or so.


Best of luck to you all breeding babies for the upcoming OLRaces and club races. Breeding is always an exciting time. 


Kenny and Corey



12/26/2019


High Desert Flyers,


I hope everyone is enjoying this time of the year with family and friends. 


Quick update on the birds. They have been cooped up for over two weeks now. Snow has been on the ground for over two weeks as well. Some more snow arrived on Christmas Eve. Temperatures haven't been getting too much above freezing (if they reach above freezing) for the last couple of weeks. Been a bit chilly and the birds are eating lots with the cold temperatures. Gotta love this time of year.


Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year.


Kenny and Corey



11/25/2019


High Desert Flyers,


So it likes like Winter will be arriving this week here in Southern Idaho. We have some colder temperatures that started today with gusty winds. The next few days are cold and windy and Thanksgiving we have some forecasted snow. We shall see what happens. By the current forecast, the birds won't have a nice enough day to go out this week. 


At this point, we will get the birds out loft flying when possible. As long as the winds are minimal and there isn't snow on the ground. November overall was a great month. Lots of nice days and the birds were out most days. The birds I think are looking pretty good. They will be eating lots of feed with these freezing temps coming in. 


I hope you all enjoy your families this week. 


Kenny and Corey



11/17/2019


High Desert Flyers,


Hope all is well. Birds are doing well. They were able to enjoy a bath this past week. Got to sneak those in while we still can. The month of November has brought some great weather. Birds have been out most days this month. We have a nice group flying 30+ minutes. The birds aren't as far along as we would like. We finally had all the birds settled by the beginning of October but that was a tough month here in Southern Idaho. Between the weather and a terrorizing hawk, it was a tough month to get them out consistently. Because of those setbacks, it looks as though we won't be getting the birds down the road this fall. Unless the weather continues to hold for the next month or so. Which I am not too optimistic about. Our goal is to have all the birds flying 45+ minutes around the loft before we start road training. We will keep you posted.


Yesterday we spent time getting the loft winterized as temperatures should start cooling off here soon. That includes cleaning out from underneath the lofts (love that job), sealing up the bottom of the loft on the west side (we predominately have west winds here), and sealing up the west side of the roof (preventing snow and rain from getting in the loft). The new additions and modifications to the loft this year has been great. More space and opened ceilings really was beneficial during the summer months. 

Hope you all enjoy the Holiday Festivities that are coming up and get to spend time with family and friends. 


Kenny and Corey


10/22/2019


High Desert Flyers,


I hope you are all enjoying the month of October and seasonal changes where applicable. We hand-checked all the electronic bands this weekend. We found 4 bands that weren't registering. Those are now fixed and what is on Wincompanion is currently in the loft. 


Between the weather and a hawk, it has been a challenge to consistently get the birds out. The past 4-5 days we have had very windy days. Typically ranging between 18-30 mph. In one area on Saturday there were such high winds that around 22 power lines were snapped and brought to the ground. Whenever the wind is projected to be over 15 mph around the loft we are always cautious. Things can get disastrous very quickly with that many birds.


Before the wind, there was what I believe to be a female sparrow hawk at the loft. The first day she showed up a lot of birds were still outside and she was able to take one of the birds off the loft. That, in turn, spooked what birds were outside really bad and it took a long while to have them trap back in. The birds were then locked down and we tested the air with our own personal team. The hawk hasn't been seen for over a week now. Typically during the Fall and Spring, we have a few hawks that pass through and get a bird or two. Other than that the birds are looking very good. The nights are going to start getting cold here soon!


We will be at the AU Convention on Friday and Saturday. If you see us please say hello! Hope to see some of you there. 


Kenny and Corey



10/7/2019


 High Desert Flyers,


We assigned bands on Saturday and the first inventory for the season is on Wincompanion. We will double-check the electronic bands in the coming week. We will undoubtedly find some mistakes we made and hopefully a few more birds will show up. Perhaps if you are currently missing a bird, it might show up during the next inventory check. 



There are currently right around 650 birds in the loft. During the last several months of settling and flying the birds, it looks as though the fly off/crash and burn rate, is right around 6.5% of the 694 we had out. I would always like to see those numbers lower but you can't control the bird once they are finally out. That is why we offer you free perches until the start of road training. I will put together a list of which lofts have free perches for 2021 and post that on the website once we get to road training. I think that will be the easy route to go since we accepted backup birds this year.


The health of the birds is doing well. While handling them this weekend almost all of them had good weight and only a few had slight canker. Birds have had Berimax in their waters the past few days and will for a few more. During chipping, we also wormed again with Moxidectin Plus. 


The weather has been hit and miss the last few weeks with storms and high winds. The next week looks to have some pretty nice weather. Minus a cold front that will be bringing temperatures in the low 20's for a few nights. The next goal is to try and get the birds in shape for some road training before winter hits. As long as the birds are in the air we will try and post weekly inventories on Wincompanion to keep you up to date. 


I think that is it. Hope all is well. Please contact us if you have any questions. 


Kenny and Corey 



9/17/2019


High Desert Flyers,


Fall is coming. Love this time of year. This past weekend I think we have seen our last days in the upper 80's. Weather for the next ten days looks to be in the 70's and 60's with some storms. If you are racing in your club, hope you have been doing well and enjoying. We have sure enjoyed getting the club in this area up and running again. 


Overall the birds are doing very well and molting heavily. We have taken the fly pen down this past weekend and are working on getting the last birds out and about. Finally getting closer to having all the birds out. As a reminder, once we have them all out we will start doing live inventories. If all goes well and the weather holds up we will start road training late fall. We will keep you posted on how loft flying goes. Bird inventory is current on wincompanion unless your bird has flown away. Those losses should be pretty minimal. Once birds are flying well we will do a few drone videos. 


Kenny and Corey