HALLE, Belgium (AP) — For about a pound of pigeon, a wealthy racing fan put down a world record 1.6 million euros ($1.9 million) for the Belgian-bred bird.
During a frantic bidding Sunday at the end of a two-week auction, two Chinese bidders drove up the price by 280,000 euros, leaving the previous record that Belgian-bred Armando fetched last year well behind.
The bidder going by the name Super Duper got the 3-year-old hen. It was proof again that an age-old hobby in Western Europe identified with working-class men now has a new, elitist lease on life.
Top breeders relying on generations of family experience can sell their birds for prices unheard of a decade ago, and often China is their destination.