Pigeon racing is a competitive sport in which pigeon owners release their pigeons at a predetermined distance from their homes and time how long it takes their birds to fly back home. The pigeon with the shortest flight time is determined the winner.
Developed nearly 2,000 years ago, pigeon racing is still popular throughout the world. The pigeons must be trained by their owners to develop the stamina needed to complete the races. To find their way home, the pigeons internally detect the Earth's magnetic field lines to guide their way. However, when the skies are stormy, pigeon races are often cancelled due to the Earth's magnetic fields becoming reversed, which confuses the birds' sense of direction.