In 2020 a racing pigeon sold for a world record $1,900,000!
Previously in 2019, the same buyer paid $1,420,000 for a champion pigeon called Armando who had won the equivalent of national, European and Olympic gold medals.
This crazy price was partly due to a growth in interest in pigeon racing in recent decades from wealthy businessmen combined with the fact that the hobby has a growing following in China which has bought a lot of money into the sport.
You don’t have to be a multimillionaire to get into pigeon racing though, in fact pigeon racing has strong roots in working-class culture, so for those of us with less money to spare you can typically buy reasonable racing pigeons starting at around $200/£150.
Racing Pigeon Pricing Factors
The price depends on a number of factors, such as:
- Their racing pedigree – how many races have they won.
- Their parents – if their parents were champion fliers this will significantly increase their price.
- Their health
- Their age
- Whether they are male or female – good fliers that are male usually go for more than equally good female fliers because they can produce more offspring for obvious reasons, that said the pigeon that sold for $1.9 million was actually female.
- Where you buy them from – there are hundreds of places where you can buy racing pigeons however there are far fewer places that have a track record of breeding champion fliers, if you buy from one a loft that has decades of experience in breeding winning pigeons then expect to pay more.
Racing Pigeon Pricing Guide
Below is a (very) rough guide of the pedigree of racing pigeon you could expect to get at different price points:
|$Up to $300||At this price range, it is possible to get a pigeon that is related to a national champion from some breeders, however at lower price points you are more likely to get pigeons that are well suited to racing but have no winners in their family history.|
|$300 – $1000||At this price, you could get a pigeon bred by a champion breeder who has a track record of breeding pigeons that are capable of performing very well in big races.|
|$1000-$10,000||Pigeons in this price range are likely to be bred by champion breeders, they are also likely to be related to pigeons that have achieved success in international races, more often than not both their mother and father will be high caliber international racers.|
|$10,000-$50,000||At this price point, you get pigeons that have a track record of success or at least are related to pigeons that have had success in some of the biggest global races.|
|$50,000+||These pigeons will include winners of the biggest races in the world.|