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National pigeon exhibition in Tavira

Thousands of pigeon fanciers from all over Europe converged on Tavira for the 38th National Pigeon Exhibition last weekend.  

There was a strong presence from Spain, Holland, Belgium and the UK. More than 1,000 birds, from as far north as Braga and Porto, preened their feathers as they waited to be judged by a panel of top experts.

On the Saturday evening, President of Tavira Câmara, Jorge Botelho, hosted a Gala Dinner at the Hotel Vila Galé Albacora.  

In terms of participation, pigeon racing is the second most popular sporting activity in Portugal with 18,000 registered pigeon fanciers.

Only football has more practising sportsmen or women. Pigeon racing in Portugal is proud to have a strong and active sense of purpose which has resulted in an increasing number of young people becoming involved.

The national federation brings together 14 associations with 763 clubs and an estimated pigeon population of four million birds.

Top prize winner.
Top prize winner.

There are 24 societies in the Algarve with the Faro District currently building a superb new complex of lofts together with a central hall and ancillary facilities.

In July, the pigeon fanciers of Luz de Tavira stage the 7th Annual Derby Luzense which is open to pigeons from throughout the EU.

With more than €25,000 in prize money, the event will be keenly contested.

Chris Wright