Please note that I have received various inquiries whereby Fanciers advise they are getting conflicting stories regarding the maximum distances they are allowed to fly – and this from SANPO representatives.

As per the recently ammended Race rule the Age/Distance rule fell away and the maximum distance the bird can fly would be 1000km.   However SANPO does allow for races in excess of 1000km to a maximum of 1200km should certain criteria be met i.e.

1)      An Application is to be made to SANPO requesting permission to host such a race and permission granted.
2)      Time of year that such a race will take place.
3)      Confirm that Race will be conducted under Vetenary Supervision and that the organisation will make a sample group of pigeons available for test to be conducted i.e Blood Tests,  Faeces Tests.

The purpose of the rule change was to allow SANPO to have tests conducted on pigeons racing these distances.   These test as highlighted in Council meeting should not be restricted to only excess 1000km races but also Races of 700 and 800km as well under different weather conditions.

These tests will hopefully eventually provide Scientific documented substance for SANPO,    so that when contesting a point of view such studies can be utilised in taking a certain position.   We might find the test results to be that we should limit distances to 800km or we might find test results to state that 1000km plus are not as strenuous on the pigeon as many seem to think – either way the position will be supported by such scientific test that would be conducted.

Here these test are to be done on all aged pigeons and not only Old pigeons eg. Yearlings as well as Old birds as what would the point be if these test are not allowed on yearlings.

And this gentlemen is where the confusion is coming in where Fanciers are stating that SANPO Council members state that the Yearling Limit of pigeon of 850km remains in force – it does not –  and I would challenge any council member to listen – if Johan has the meeting recorded as to what was said.

I also warned that by stating the granting of such permission would be subject to this or that will simply create confusion,   some Council members insisted that this be included.

Please do not forget the reason for amending this rule and that is to put SANPO in a position of strength to argue a position based on FACT not FICTION,  that is simply based on some or other person OPINION that races over specific distance is cruel or not.   They might very well be – we do not know and that is why this rule has been amended – to allow us to test and substantiate fact.

This is to clarify the proposal and what was meant by the proposal,  and if all were awake at the time,  I am sure my position will also be substantiated by recordings of the meeting concerned.

The purpose of the e-mail is to ensure the understanding of this rule is correctly conveyed to Fanciers.   This rule would only effect Organisations wishing to race races exceeding 1000km and please note – there is no Age Restriction rule in place anymore….

I trust this rule is now clear.

Shane Gerber
Chairman – ConsitutionalCommitee