Missing racing pigeons found in Ireland after mystery disappearance

Two racing pigeons, thought to be from a group missing from Cambridgeshire, have been found in Ireland

Two racing pigeons, thought to be from a group missing from Cambridgeshire, have been found in Ireland following their disappearance. - Credit: Supplied

Two British racing pigeons, thought to be from a group missing following a race in Cambridgeshire, have been found in West Cork, Ireland.  

Thousands of birds disappeared into thin air mid-race after leaving Peterborough on Saturday (June 19), leaving experts and owners baffled.  

With around 10,000 birds missing, people across the country are beginning to locate them, with dozens showing up across the UK and Ireland.  

4,465 pigeons belonging to members of the Barnsley Federation of Racing Pigeons are released at Wick

“I have never heard of anything like this," said the Royal Pigeon Racing Association. - Credit: PA

One woman in Clonakilty, West Cork, discovered one of the birds, complete with its GB registration tag, “perched” on their bedroom window.  

She said: “We have tried to catch him but even though he is approachable he manages to thwart all our attempts.  

“He is perched on our bedroom window and we have been feeding him with bird seed and water. 

One of the birds was found in Clonakilty, West Cork. 

One of the birds was found in Clonakilty, West Cork. - Credit: Supplied


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“We have his GB reg number GB 19 A 38021 and part of his owners phone number.  

“We have checked online and see there is no point reporting the bird unless he is actually in one's possession.   

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“We have already saved him from a neighbour's cat who made a rush at it. It doesn't appear to be streetwise where cats are concerned. 

“We would love to reunite him with his owner.”  

Do you recognise the bird's registration number?

Do you recognise the bird's registration number? - Credit: Supplied

Another person, this time in Co Mayo, Ireland, has reported finding one of the birds, sadly this one was found dead in their garden.  

They said: “This morning I found one dead in my garden with tag ihus21s021202, I wonder is this one of the group?” 

Richard Sayers of Sayers Bros & Son from Skinningrove in the East Cleveland Federation said: “Out there is tens of thousands of racing pigeons.”  

Mr Sayers, who has lost around 40 per cent of his birds in the puzzling event, has given guidance online to anyone who may find one of the pigeons.   

“Put down a bowl of water and some seed or rice to help it on its way, you’ll know it’s a race bird as it will have rings around its feet,” he said.  

A racing pigeon arrives at a coop complex in Wombwell, South Yorkshire, as pigeon racing beats snook

One pigeon fancier described the ordeal as “the very worst ever racing days in our history". - Credit: PA

“If you can contain it, I’ll gladly call round to try and get them back to the rightful owners.  

“We needed our little birds help in the major conflicts and they saved 1000s of lives, now we can do our little bit to help them.” 

Ian Evans, of the Royal Pigeon Racing Association, said: “We became aware quite quickly that something very unusual was happening.  

“I have never heard of anything like this.  

“On the face of it the weather conditions were good. But in the event, thousands of birds simply didn’t return. 

“Something happened that disrupted their navigational abilities. We believe it may have had something to do with solar wind activity.”  

Mr Evans added: “It wasn’t just in this country either, we’ve had reports of heavy losses in Portugal and in Belgium as well.”  

“We are obviously hoping that the majority of these birds find their way home given time.” 

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