Wealthy Chinese have been snapping up the world’s most expensive sheep, top wines, red Tibetan mastiff and some the world’s most expensive cars. Now they’re adding pigeons to their must-have list. Hu Zhen Yu, a Chinese shipping magnate, paid a record-breaking €250,400 ($328,000) for a Dutch fancy pigeon of the Dolce Vita (Special Blue) breed. Though the trend in China shows that pigeons like these are bought generally for racing, but the Chinese shipping magnet seems to have thought otherwise, and breed it instead. Zhen Yu last year sponsored a pigeon race in Wenzhou that awarded 7 million yuan ($1.1 million) in prize money.
Belgium-based PIPA, short for Pigeon Paradise, said the bird was one of 245 put up for an online auction by Pieter Veenstra of the Dutch village of Drachtstercompagnie. The auction total take of $2.5 million was also a record, PIPA said.
Last January, a pedigreed Belgian racing pigeon, Blue Prince, sold for $200,000 to a Chinese buyer, and in November, the pigeon Euro Diamond, an 8-year-old retired Flemish pigeon famed for long flights sold for almost $225,000, making it the most expensive pigeon ever sold, until this latest purchase.