You might already know that some fancy pigeon breeds sell for as high as a few thousand USD. But did you know, the most expensive racing pigeons (ever sold) cost millions? Here is a list of the 5 most expensive pigeons sold over the last decade.
New Kim – $1.8 million
Back in 2019, the 2-year-old Belgian pigeon ‘New Kim’ was sold to a Chinese bidder for $1.8 million. New Kim was bred and raised by a Flemish trainer ‘Gaston van de Wouwer’ who was known to raise champion pigeons. Gaston van de Wouwer sold around 400 pigeons along with the New Kim but this was his most expensive sale.  
It was surprising for everyone witnessing the auction at the Pigeon Auction House PIPA as it surpassed all records. Moreover, New Kim was a female pigeon, and generally, males sell for higher prices than females as males can produce more offspring.
Armando – $1.4 million
Like New Kim, Armando was also raised in Belgian and sold to a Chinese bidder in 2019. Armando was sold by Joel Verschoot under PIPA. Unlike New Kim, Armando was a 10-year-old male pigeon that was still expected to breed well and produce exceptional racers. The Verschoot family sold 178 pigeons for a total of almost 2 million Euros at the same auction. 
Interestingly, the top two bidders of Armando were both Chinese. This explains how Chinese bidders are taking over the pigeon racing industry and how well the hobby is growing in China.
Golden Prince – $580,000
One of its kind, the Golden Prince was also a Belgian racing pigeon, sold by a Belgian pigeon fancier Gino Clicque under PIPA. It was sold to South African buyers Mark Kitchenbrand and Samuel Mbiza who outbid Chinese bidders and bought Golden Prince back in 2017. Gino Clicque sold 405 pigeons for a total of $3.4 million at the same auction. 
Nadine – $470,000
Nadine formerly known as Selin, a female pigeon, raced in Europe and the USA is one of the most expensive pigeons ever sold. She was sold to a Chinese buyer Xing Wei (also known as Kaier) back in 2017 by its former owner Willy Daniëls. Back at that time, Nadine had already won multiple races and her sister Sara was also a champion.  
Bolt – $400,000
Back in 2013, a male Belgian pigeon Bolt was sold for an astonishing $400,000 to a Chinese bidder. Bolt was sold by Leo Heremans, a Belgian pigeon fancier/ who sold a total of 530 pigeons for 4.3 million Euros at the same auction. 
Bolt was named after the Jamaican sprinter Usain Bolt because of its exceptional racing abilities. It is believed that the buyer intended to breed Bolt and produce high-quality racer pigeons.
Well, who knew a pigeon could cost this high? But the rising interest of new hobbyists has set a new trend. This is why pigeon racing has become an industry and many pigeon fanciers are now producing and training high-quality racing pigeons specifically for trading purposes.
Interestingly, China has become the new highest-growing market of racing pigeons and most of the expensive racing pigeons sold in the last decade have been bought by Chinese bidders. According to a source, back in 2020, there were more than 1 million pigeon fanciers in China and the number was still growing.  So hopefully, we might see new records over the next few years.
Bilal is a freelance writer and a content creator. He has been in the pigeon hobby for over 15 years. Over the years, he has worked on various fancy pigeon breeds and explored their history.