"What is amazing is the constant call for a cull on BOP by Pigeon fanciers, and yet they kill far more than are lost to natural predators."
One person who won the national lottery paid £60,000:00 for a racing Pigeon.
(True, check Camelot) Who says it's not about the money.
If this bird is was lost during a race or free flight around the loft, what would get the blame.
A bird of prey would, as this is the easy option.
The birds capabilities of finding it's own way home would never come into question. That's like admitting that you have just spent a fortune, to some, on a dud bird, you abilities and knowledge as a Pigeon fancier/racer is now definitely in question, and what for the cheaper birds in your loft. Worthless!!
Now, who is going to admit to that??
Me personally, for £60,000:00 I would expect that this bird would be overtaking Pergs' during a stoop.