Camden Haven residents are hoping pigeon racing will continue to grow in popularity within the region.
While pigeon racing is not known for being on the same level as that of horse or greyhound events, Club North Haven Pigeon Club's vice president Doug Siddons said the sport is just as riveting.
The club is part of the Mid North Coast Pigeon Federation, which has a number of clubs between Taree and Coffs Harbour.
Club members recently took part in their first race, where pigeons were released from Maclean Lookout, about 290km from Laurieton.
The pigeons then raced each other to fly back to their owners' respective home towns.
Mr Siddons said it took the pigeons about four hours to fly the distance.
Warren Mustow and Parsons came first with a pigeon flying velocity measured at 1208.976, Wayne Ross claimed second (1147.775) and Geoff Reasbekk third (1088.768).
The racing circuit goes all the way up the coast to Rockhampton.
Mr Siddons said he trains his pigeons as babies around his house, before gradually increasing their flying distance.
He takes his birds to Port Macquarie for a training fly back to his home in Laurieton.
Mr Siddons said pigeons were used in world wars as a vital method of communication.
"They helped save a lot of lives in New Guinea," he said.
Mr Siddons has owned pigeons since he was a child and said it's a great hobby which people can start in their own backyards.
He said the hobby can teach young people about values, including responsibility.
Mr Siddons said there's not too many birds which can fly as fast as the pigeon and they are an intelligent species.
For more information, or to join in the racing contact North Haven Pigeon Club president Warren Mustow on 6559 6217.
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