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I looked for “New Year pigeon” and “New Year dove” on the old YouTube site, and here’s what I found:

And a few random videos simply for your viewing pleasure:

I must admit, I really cannot get enough of the voice of these doves! They crack me up! :D

Saw this photo on the BBC website and I think it’s brilliant! I love the way the woody looks so determined as he strolls down the path: He’s on a mission. He’s seen the peanuts. He’s going to eat them!! LOL!

Woodpigeon (Columba palumbus)

And I’m sure you’ve all seen the following photos of a squirrel fending off a feral pigeon. Don’t worry, the pigeon flew away unharmed.

Last two photos from: http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-1281971/Ill-teach-steal-nuts-Squirrel-goes-battle-pigeon-food.html

Today both Georgie and I had had enough (read yesterdays post to catch up). I removed the nest and infertile egg after Georgie had quickly become restless and fed up from the 16 days of non-stop incubating, and now she’s settled and calm. By tomorrow she’ll be sitting on my lap, cooing contently once again. I cannot wait.

Yes, the past two weeks have been quiet and easy going without Georgie’s constant attention-seeking behaviour, so I was happy for the break, however, soon after a week of being pigeon free I really started to miss her affections and company. … And Elmo wasn’t being obliging in filling the void. … No matter how hard I tried to bribe him to love me instead of my husband.

I had forgotten how hard it is to deal with Georgie during her broodiness. You can forgive me since it has been 8 months since the last time she had laid an egg. But now that we are once again egg-free things should hopefully go back to normal. I must simply remember not to encourage her broodiness. I don’t want more eggs anytime soon.

Here’s the darling girl sitting down in a calm manner. How cute is she?! (Thankfully she didn’t climb onto the pink and white fleece!)


George has in fact filled out very nicely in the past month. She feels really chunky and solid, which I’m very happy about since she has always been a bit too slight and thin. I hope she doesn’t loose her “pregnancy” weight! :)

And I mustn’t forget dear Elmo. I know I haven’t been writing much about him lately, which I will try to rectify soon. Do you know that pigeons seem to synchronize their behaviours? Well, Georgie and Elmo certainly do. Today, Elmo had a bath right after Georgie had one, then they both sat on the sofa to dry off. Then a little while later, at the same time, they began to preen. And then it was time for a nap. Here’s the boy zonked out. This is why we love him so much! :)


Georgie is driving us mad. She’s still incubating her fake egg. It’s been 16 days now.

When Georgie’s sitting on her egg she’s quiet and still. She spends all day and probably all night on the egg. This isn’t normal since the male pigeon would be doing his part in the incubating, however, since Georgie’s mate is basically me and I cannot possibly incubate the egg, she is doing double-shifts.

Doing double-shifts for 16 days has taken its toll. Georgie is restless and very indecisive. She wants to come out of her cage for a stretch and a poo, then she flies about to get back into her cage. So I put her back. Georgie eats a bit, then 2 minutes later she wants out again. So I take her out. And Georgie flies about again trying to get back into the cage. So I put her back in. … You see what I’m getting at here. It’s driving me mad.

I have a feeling that Georgie is getting ready to abandon her egg. If it doesn’t hatch in the next few days Georgie will realise that she’s wasted her time and energy. … I feel really bad now writing this. Like I’ve duped her. However, if I were to take the eggs away straight after they were laid, then Georgie would pine for them and lay another pair soon again. If I let her incubate the infertile eggs then at least she goes through the motions her hormones are demanding her to do. The best thing would be to let her incubate fertile eggs and raise some babies, but so far no male pigeon has been interested in Georgie. They all think her eyes are weird and peck her.

One day, maybe I’ll find a nice disabled male pigeon who thinks the world of Georgie. One day, hopefully. She deserves it.

What do pigeons feet tell us about them? Well, different bird species have different shaped feet and toes according to their diet and the environment they live in:

From: http://www.sciencebuddies.org/science-fair-projects/project_ideas/Zoo_p050.shtml

Pigeons are somewhat classified as a perching bird. They have a classic anisodactyl toe arrangement: three toes pointing forward and one long toe pointing back (the hallux). Because they spend much of their time foraging on the ground their toes are widely splayed, which is better for walking.

Toe arrangements: a = anisodactyl (e.g. pigeon), b = zygodactyl (e.g. woodpecker), c = heterodactyl (e.g. trogon), d = syndactyl (e.g. kingfisher), and e = pamprodactyl (e.g. swift) (as illustrated in Proctor and Lynch 1993).

Birds actually walk on their toes (called digitigrade) instead of on all of the foot bones (as humans do). To help resist the wear and tear of walking and perching, the bones and flesh of the foot are covered with a tough plating of scales which strengthens the foot (Proctor and Lynch, 1993).

I love pigeons’ feet. They’re just so odd and scaly. Feral pigeons have different coloured feet: some are red or pink, and others are more grey or brown.

George’s feet are a healthy bright red. Very vibrant!

Elmo’s feet are more maroon – rich and full. He’s older so he looks more established. :)

I managed to take a photo of Dora’s lovely pale pink feet, however, she was more interested in sitting on her nest and defending it against my intruding hands, so it came with a struggle!

I don’t think the colour of their feet show clearly in these photos but you can see some difference in colour:


Georgie's feet


Elmo's feet


Dora's feet


Pidge's feet (Dora's mate)

Often a pigeon will have a nap with one foot tucked up against its body under its feathers. When that foot later emerges it is very toasty! I love touching George’s feet when she does this. One foot will be lovely warm, the other cold.

It seems that older pigeons have thicker legs and toes than younger ones (from the birds I’ve been comparing). They also have richer coloured and darker legs.

Then you have feathered feet! They’re just amazing! While some fancy breeds have short feathers on their feet, others have really long ones, which can cause problems with their walking as well as hygiene (they need to be cleaned often to prevent build up of droppings stuck to the feathers). Some examples: Fancy pigeons at work

* * * * * * *

References: Proctor, Noble S. and Lynch, Patrick J. (1993). Manual of Ornithology, Avian Structure and Function. Yale University Press, New Haven and London.

No, we didn’t have pigeon on the menu! (Many people jokingly suggested it! For shame!) However, we did try to incorporate pigeons and birds in our Christmas decorations. We’ll try to go all out next year, but for now we are happy with the few purchases we made:








I have to admit that yesterdays Christmas card was Photoshopped – because there is no way that we could have orchestrated a peaceful photo shoot with Elmo and Georgie standing together on the Christmas tree. So with a bit of magic, Richard put the following two photos together.


We think that Elmo approved of the tree.


Georgie wasn't too sure about the tree.

Georgie is still on her fake egg, and she seems happy so I didn’t take it away yet. She didn’t want to celebrate Christmas with us – she is too dedicated to her egg to leave it.

Elmo, on the other hand, got what he wished for: pine nuts and lots of love. We didn’t have to get him anything else – he is one happy pigeon! :)

Last year Georgie was more interested in Christmas. Here she is sneaking a peak under the tree to see if she’s got any presents:


And I got what I wanted for Christamas: a wonderful pigeon necklace! Thank you hubby!! xxx

Pigeon in Flight Pendant Necklace by SunshowerCreations on Etsy

I threw out lots of seed and peanuts for the birds in the garden on Christmas Day, and immediately the woodpigeons that roost in the big tree on the other side of the hedge came down to gobble up all the food (with a feral pigeon to join them):



I hope everyone had a lovely Christmas and have given their pet pigeons or their local wild ones lots of love!! Merry Christmas!


I haven’t been very organised this week (short-staffed at work has made me very tired) so I didn’t get the Christmas posts sorted, so forgive me for the videos – all with a Christmas theme though:

And of course, Two Turtle Doves:

At a Christmas party with my husband. It’s a sit-down dinner with cheesy disco music blaring in the background. Lots of drinks. Maybe some dancing later.

The subject: pigeons. More specifically: Our pet pigeons!

Five minutes into the conversation I realise how crazy we both sound. Richard is showing the people at the table Elmo fast asleep at home as seen from the webcam via Richard’s phone. … We’re proud as new parents, showing off our “babies”.

Somehow I doubt we’ve come across as sane, reasonable people. “Hippie” and “crazy” come to mind.

Oh well. Return home late to a very happy pigeon dancing around our feet and greeting us with enthusiasm. We were only gone for about 4 hours but Elmo’s acting like he hasn’t seen us all day.

We didn’t disturb Georgie. She was fast asleep in her cage.

* * * * * * *

On another subject, here’s Georgie hard at work:




And now time to rest:


I have a confession to make. … I’m addicted to Etsy. I cannot help myself; there are simply too many beautiful wonderful things for sale on there!

I put ‘pigeon’ in the search engine under the ‘Jewelry’ category and 124 items came up. I found some real gems and have one already on order (a present from my darling hubby). I’d love to order the other beautiful pigeon necklaces I found but cannot afford to splash out just yet. Anyway, don’t take my word for it, have a look for yourself:

Pigeon Jewellery on Etsy

One example:

Olive green bird necklace by baronika5

Here’s some very quirky yet fun pigeon necklaces by Ruth Bellotti at Chinnychinchin:

Pigeon Ring Necklace

Product description: “Wear a little piece of sporting greatness around your neck with this original pigeon racing ring necklace. Complete with sterling silver chain and individual pigeon profile.”

My only reservation is in thinking that these pigeons were killed to get the rings off of them, but more likely the birds died and then had their rings removed. On the other hand, maybe these rings were never on any birds – it’s most likely all make-belief.