DO THE EYES HAVE IT ?
We go way back to 1984, right after Brad made his personal discovery. Many across the country were
having him fly out to grade their birds. They had heard of his high percentage ability to pick the best birds
in their lofts.
One day, Alex Bieche, Tom Hook and myself met at Brads house with our pigeons in baskets. Brad sat in a
chair as we were all outside. There were no birds out flying. There were schill culls mixed into the birds to
try to fool Brad. He let the birds settle down somewhat before looking at each of them one at a time in the
The rules were simple, he never looked at the band or asked any questions regarding the particular bird.
He would put the birds in two baskets, good and bad basket.........then he would go through the good baket
again and give you his results on each bird.
We were all amazed at his findings from our birds. I believe in each and every case, he was correct. He later
on told me that one evening he awoke for his sleep with a thought that came to him. That very day, he
went through all his pigeons in the bright sunlite and confirmed what he had envisioned. As time went on
he conveyed to me exactly what to look for. His occular eye movement coupled with his high level orientation
circular movement of eye itself seemed to be more practical and made common sense to me. Since eye color
and iris make up run according to family trait, its almost not a factor when viewing the birds.
At first, viewing the occular movemet of the eye is not an easy task and one has to train himself to be aware
of it. I find that its better as we get older and our eyes begin to fade, to use a number 10 power loupe fitted
to some old sun glasses for ease.
Just for fun through the years, I have alway made note of it and alway made my final decision in culling
between two perfect specimans.......choosing the occular eye movement and rotation. As for the HLREO or
high orientation factor was the ability for the bird to have his eye rotate inside the eye socket itself in all
directions easily, without having to move its head.......(much like eagles and hawks, owls do).
We have noted through the years that the most severe eye occular movement, or flutter if you will, were
the gifted birds whose ability to breed 'supers' out of turn. We also noted that the best performing pigeons
had the best occular eye movement. One more thing, we have also noticed that the birds with the rapid, but
less exaggerated occular movement were birds that excelled in the easier races but would be less likely to be
there when things got dicey...
All of the above is just written because its something we have paid attention to for a long time. It isnt gospel
written in stone meant to sway anyone into this point of view. On the contrary, its just subject matter that
Brad spent time on and shared with not only myself but many others who found it to have some merit.
One note, we have never ever had a pigeon with the "it" as good as our old foundation cockbird "Joe" which
we had back in the 80s. I remember when Brad picked him out of the basket, his reaction was non other
than astonished. Afterwards when I viewed "Joe" for the movement, it was so severe that you would have
to be a blind man not to notice it.
Rest in Peace Brad.........