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The Wooliss Strain of England
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Lona There are those whose loft or lofts contain a strain of their own making but for some reason they are not acknowledged as strain makers. One of the latter is I believe the family of Paul Woolliss of Grimsby in England. This family contains some of the best long and marathon type racing pigeons in Europe today. An example of their stature is 1st Section National Flying Club Pau at 703 miles, 1st Section, 7th Open British Barcelona Club from Palamos at 815 miles, and of course the exploits of the great 'Lona' with eight national positions and three times Spain to her credit. Lona There are those whose loft or lofts contain a strain of their own making but for some reason they are not acknowledged as strain makers. One of the latter is I believe the family of Paul Woolliss of Grimsby in England. This family contains some of the best long and marathon type racing pigeons in Europe today. An example of their stature is 1st Section National Flying Club Pau at 703 miles, 1st Section, 7th Open British Barcelona Club from Palamos at 815 miles, and of course the exploits of the great 'Lona' with eight national positions and three times Spain to her credit.

The base of the strain has its roots in Holland, that is, the bloodlines of the van Wanroy's of Jo Hendricks of Twello. Apparently purchased in 1984 when the Twello lofts were at their best they were crossed with Paul's Stichelbauts and in due course became the Woolliss strain. Again we see in this series the input of the Stichelbauts into the evolution of an ultra distance family.

The founder believes that it is quality that counts especially for this type of endurance racing and emphasizes very strongly that the key for success is the necessary requirement of 'condition'. And it is generating the proper condition that occupies the astute intellect of Paul Woolliss within the context of his yearly racing objectives. An intellect that is pro quality and ensures that about two dozen youngsters along with a few late breds are bred each year and that the present widespread mass breeding addiction in the fancy is held at bay. This of course coupled with apparent patience has saw the growth of a family which is amongst the leading strains in Britain at present. Of course as a small team fancier Woolliss has ensured that his stock loft contains the best of breeders. A basic and essential necessity!

The Woolliss lofts are not a one bird loft although it would be difficult to refer to the strain without referring to the noble exploits of the magnificent blue hen known as 'Lona'. Rung NEHU 95 HAR 7400 and of van Wanroy/ Stichelbaut bloodlines this outstanding thoroughbred scored: 1st SECTION E 46th OPEN PALAMOS 815 miles BBC. FURTHEST FLYING BIRD IN RACE TIME. 2nd SECTION 68th OPEN PALAMOS 815 miles BBC AGAIN WINNING FURTHEST FLYING BIRD IN RACE TIME. 55th OPEN BARCELONA 3rd SECTION E VERIFIED 842 MLS. 39th OPEN NANTES 4th SECTION E 438 miles. 133rd OPEN BORDEAUX 3rd SECTION E 596 miles BBC. 604th OPEN PAU 33rd SECTION K 703 miles NFC. 195th OPEN LE FERTE’BERNARD 370 miles MNFC. 9th SECTION BORDEAUX 283rd OPEN 596 miles BBC. Seven times over 596 miles. Fifteen channel crossings. Lona flew over 7,987 national miles. What a pigeon!

To conclude, Paul Woolliss has formed his modern strain of marathon racing pigeons inspite of the fact that he suffers from pigeon lung disease. Of tremendous help and support through the years of this condition and during the development of his strain was his wife, Wendy, and in this brief insight I include her too in my tribute to a modern English strain. This truth concurs with the saying which I often heard in my childhood and youth 'Behind every good man there is a good woman.


Liam O Comain  -
by: Liam O Comain

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