Above, The Bowker aviary in May 2015. The BS is confident that members  throughout the country will support the family; Richard Bowker told  C&AB that some have already offered birds from their bloodline back


One of the top budgerigar studs in the county is determined to keep calm and carry on after its stock was almost completely wiped out by a fire at the end of last year. The Bowker stud  (father John and  sons Richard and Wayne), of Stoke-on-Trent, lost more than 200 birds housed in their main breeding shed, which was consumed by fire in the early hours of December, 29, 2018. Two fire engines attended and, while investigations are still continuing, the blaze appears to have had an electrical source, possibly an oil-filled radiator or a light timer.

Speaking to Cage & Aviary Birds, Richard Bowker said that the family had lost 90 per cent of their stock. However, fortunately the remainder – 12 pairs – most of which were destined to be sold, were housed in a separate shed and will now form the basis of the revival of the B o w k e r stud.

Mr Bowker e x p l a i n e d : “There are some good bloodlines there and I hope some of them will perform well for us on the show bench later in the season. ” The partnership are starting to pair up these birds and also plan to rebuild the main breeding shed over the course of the year.

G r a n t Findlay, Budgerigar Society (BS) administrator, commented: “The BS membership were shocked to learn of the devastating news. The Bowkers are one of the leading budgie studs in the UK and we hope that members will support them in rebuilding their stud again.”

Fanciers from the budgerigar hobby have rallied around the well-known trio with messages of sympathy and some offers of fresh stock.

The BS publicised the news on its website in a statement which read: “The officials and members of the BS General Council wish to convey their deepest sympathy to John, Richard and Wayne Bowker…. Such devastation is a severe blow to the partnership and a great loss to the hobby.”

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