Lamberton Racing Pigeons

Loft Management Series

"The Importance of Permanent Records"

Within our Blogs during the year, we often repeat or restate certain ideas.  One of the ideas that we frequently restate is record keeping.  We believe that superior loft management practices are extremely repetitive. We strongly encourage everyone to purchase a notebook or three-ring binder to use during the year.  We don't like binders with large rings as this type of binder is personally hard for carry around on a daily basis.  We prefer binders with small rings that are easy to open and carry.  We also prefer binders with plastic covers.  We suggest that you find a picture that motivates you, lifts your spirit, and makes you feel extremely good.  It may be a picture of a pigeon or a fancier or your loft or your family - anything that strikes the most positive chord within your psyche.  Print the picture on an 8 X 10 sheet of photographic paper and slip in underneath the plastic see-through cover of your three-ring binder.  You will be amazed at the positive motivation that a relevant picture creates in your mind in order to develop the discipline to create and maintain permanent records on a daily or weekly basis.  Also, we suggest that you utilize tabbed separators to create sections within the binder.  Designate the first separator's tab as Breeders.  Then, designate the second tab as Young Birds or something to that effect.

By hand or using the computer or word processor, list the breeding pairs that you have decided to couple for the breeding season.  You can copy the pedigrees for each pair and include that information in the Breeder section of the binder.  Sometimes we print a "Test" page from the pedigree program that we use to create pedigrees.  A "Test" pedigree for a pair of breeders that have not yet been coupled will allow you to visually evaluate the genetic quality of the youngsters produced from each hypothetical breeding couple on paper before you actually couple the pair of breeders.

Under the second tab and in a table created as a word document, write down or list each band or ring number with a column for date of hatching, parents, color, sex, and special notes fort each youngster hatched.  The following template is an example of a table that you might use in your binder in order to keep a permanent record of each young bird hatched and rung or banded during a calendar year.



















Let us strongly suggest that you keep the information in the three-ring binder current on a daily basis if possible.  Most of the time, recording information in a permanent binder is more a function of discipline than of time.  It may help to also use a clip board with several sheets of blank breeding records in the clip board.  That way, when you ring your youngsters, you can jot the info down on the working notes on the clipboard and then transfer the information to the permanent binder.  For smaller breeding operations, it may be easier just to keep the binder with you and only record the breeding records one time.  We use several clip boards within the breeding loft to keep notes.  If you are like us, we have found that we will perform a work function like record keeping much more readily if it is very convenient to do so. 

So, two management tools that we suggest you begin immediately are using a binder and a clip board(s) to easily keep permanent records of relevant and important breeding information and notes.  Especially when fostering eggs, immediately record each and every action that you make in the breeding loft.  Believe us, it will help more than you can imagine later on when you are trying to remember what you did when you thought at the time that you would never forget a decision or become confused by your actions.