Joe Campione Flying Flight's... owned and flown by: Joe Campione
Interviewed by: Bolingbrook Bob July 7 2001
Comments on Joe's progress by Richie Bailin.
Richie will give us a little history on Joe's endeavors until we hear from the man himself.
Joe Campione specializes in breeding the Cap Flight and will no doubt be a leader on the subject and the man to beat in the future.
First of all Joe is a longtime rooftop flyer from Corona, N.Y. where he flew an assortment of pigeons including Racing Homers at one point. From what I gather his love for Flights go back many years but up until 8 or 9 years ago he had never bred a Flying Flight for show purposes. It was at this time he approached me (R. Bailin) at a the local pigeon auction and had asked me to come to his loft for a look at his birds. I accepted the invitation and visited with Joe the following weekend. It was at this time that Joe expressed an interest in joining the Mid-Island Flight Club but was not too sure how his birds would fare in competition. So I told Joe that I would gladly go through the birds and give him an honest opinion of his present stock.
Being the kind of breeder I am I told Joe that I would not sugarcoat my opinions but still be cordial. He did have a few nice birds which he purchased at the weekly auctions. Not bad for the novice breeder, but Joe was eager for more so it was at this time that he made his decision that he was going to be a competitive breeder. This does not happen overnight, and I'm sure with many disappointments. It was that following year that Joe came to me and asked for a little help. With out having too many cap birds at the time, I told Joe that if there was a bird in my loft that would help him out it would be my pleasure to lend him a bird. Joe came to my loft that day and he saw that I raised a Dun Teager Cap cock out of my original Black Teager plainhead hen from Bob Schaeffer and a beautiful Dun Teager Plainhead cock which I caught. I told him if he thinks that this bird could help his cause be my guest. The following week Joe was at the weekly auction and purchased a nice Black Teager Cap hen from a former Flight fancier and club member John Romano. Joe immediately put the pair together and from the 1st mating this pair has produced an unbelievable amount of birds that have and still place in shows.
This pair became the foundation of Joe Campione's loft in the Teager Cap class. I kept stressing to Joe that if he wants to keep getting better at raising a champion Flying Flight he must not forget to cull the "garbage". Joe has become a breeder and not a collector of nice pigeons. He has stopped buying strange birds from the auctions and has inbred and line-bred his family of birds to the point where it is almost automatic that breeding some beautiful pigeons is a given.
Joe likes to dabble in many color classes of birds including some plainheads now. Joe and I have even stumbled on raising some great Barred birds by accident out of my family of Black Plainheads. This is our 2nd year at this task and we feel that these birds are now competitive.
Joe really has a love for his Yellow Teager Caps and looking at the pictures you will see why. The color is deep yellow, almost orange and the markings are getting better with every breeding season. Before I forget, Joe did get some help with the Yellow Teager Caps by getting a couple of birds from Mike Perillo, another club member and a true breeder of Flying Flights. Mike has a keen eye for a good bird and has proven that with his many "Best of Show".
Over the last 8 years Joe should really be commended for his constant strive for a better bird. He is very picky when it comes to cap birds because he feels that a lot of the birds being bred today do not possess the "proper" cap which should not start from the middle of the neck. (please note the Black Teager caps in the pics)
Joe has also had a love for Black solids in caps and plainheads. He tried for many years to breed them in caps only to give it up two years ago for a couple of reasons. He has bred some gorgeous Black Flights in plainheads. Yes, they are my family of birds but Joe does his own matings and continues to make great progress in breeding a champion. I am always looking over my shoulder to see if he is sneaking one in there that might be beating one of mine out.
It is no secret that Joe and I have a special relationship not only with breeding pigeons, but as a friend. When I need his assistance or he needs me, it is a given we are and always will be there for each other . When it comes to the birds we still constructively criticize each others birds whether it is pairs or youngsters.