Anatoly Pobletsky from Vinnytsya brought his first dove from the Republic of Moldova under his arm, so that the border guards won’t see his “luggage”.
“I have only a few of them now because two years ago all the birds were stolen. Only one dove came back. It calmed me a bit, because if he was alive, then the thieves probably stole my birds to breed them. I was worried they would eat the birds. After that I started from the beginning,”
– says the man.
The man owns Czechoslovak sports doves. He says, “When you release them, they fly high, and can remain in the same place in the air for 2-4 hours. They fly to the clouds, about fifteen hundred meters high, where you can’t see them at all. They get down to the place from where they left.
However, kites give the doves a hard time. There were one or two of them before, but now there are dozens. You cannot shoot near the border. Moreover, kites are in the Red Book of Ukraine. It was a smart thing dove farmers from Kiev did. I saw it on TV. They put a cage with doves next to trap for predators. You won’t get a penalty for doing this, only a warning.
Anatoliy says that today a dove of a good breed can cost about 400 hryvnias. Doves from Nikolaev are much cheaper. No one wants to buy them because hawks beat them. Beautiful decorative doves cost $350 for a couple, but kites kill them the moment they fly up in the sky.
The man feeds his doves with corn and barley. They like to eat greens and grass. You also have to give them millet, sunflower seeds, peas and vitamins for chicken. It is necessary to give the doves gray river sand and red clay. If you give them yellow clay, they just won’t see it. You can also add a little bit of salt to the sand or water.
Anatoly first got acquainted with doves at the age of 13. His grandfather kept doves and gulls.
The man earns some money at weddings to feed his birds. He stands near the register office and offers newlyweds to take a picture with pigeons for their wedding album. Anatoly manages to visit five weddings in one day.