IAG Cargo has safely transported Bob the award-winning racing pigeon back home to the UK after he took a 4,000-mile detour and ended up in Alabama.

In June, Bob took off for a 10-hour trip home from Guernsey to Gateshead but took a wrong turn and ended up in the southern US state.

The Monroe County Alabama Animal Shelter took Bob in and were able to identify his owner, Alan Todd, using Bob’s microchip.

Bob was the first pet pigeon IAG Cargo has moved, and, as with all animals being transported overseas, checks were required for pre-entry and re-entry.

On his return, Bob had to quarantine for a minimum of 30 days at Heathrow Airport’s Animal Reception Centre, which waived the fee.

Valerie Hadley, Products Manager at IAG Cargo, says, “We are glad to have been able to reunite Bob with his owner Alan. It was an amazing and unique experience to fly out to the US to support Bob’s move back to the UK. I’ve helped fly many animals during my time at IAG Cargo. However participating in a rescue mission for a lost and subsequently found racing pigeon is a first.”