Just watched a jaw-dropping piece on Antiques Roadshow about the National Pigeon Service (NPS)in ww2. Seems over 250,000 racing pigeons were conscripted in WW2 - some were awarded medals for their service. Apparently every bomber taking off from UK carried two pigeons in boxes in case of problems and radio failure.
There is an Association researching all this who intend to publish the story in the near future. I'm hooked!