Animal Planet Helps Mike Tyson's New Show Take Flight

Daniel KablackCorrespondent IIIMarch 16, 2010

What is former heavyweight boxing champion Mike Tyson doing these days—besides making cameos in movies geared toward the college-aged audience?

He's training.

But you'd never guess what he's training for.

This week, TV network Animal Planet announced it is going to begin production of a new show starring Mike Tyson.

Mike Tyson: amateur pigeon racer.

Starting in the spring, Tyson will begin his journey into the competitive world of pigeon racing in his own show—aptly titled Taking On Tyson .

He will take on professional pigeon racers while raising and training his own pigeons with a professional staff of pigeon trainers.

Birds are nothing new to Tyson, who has raised many different kinds of birds—as well as other animals.

The show has already received resistance from PETA, who states that pigeon racing is abusive and questions why Animal Planet would support such a show.

The former boxer has grown up around birds all his life, and he's rather well-acquainted with the small feathery creatures.

He has always been a wildlife supporter and enjoys the company of animals.

Pigeon racing involves specially trained pigeons, which are released at point 'A', to fly to point 'B', which is usually home.

Some races can be over 500 miles long, and RFID tags are sometimes used to keep track of the pigeons.

The pigeon with the highest velocity wins.

Production of the show is scheduled to start in the spring in New York City.