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This is what greeted me when I came home from work yesterday:


I didn’t expect it at all, so when I slowly opened the door all these feathers started moving out and I got a fright from seeing so many! My first reaction was that something had happened to Elmo. That somehow a sparrowhawk had gained entry into the house and had plucked him. Silly thought, I know, but I had just seen a dead pigeon at work that had been eaten by a sparrowhawk, so it was still fresh in my mind.

Elmo was fine, of course. He came running out of the room with his usual joy and excitement. There were more feathers behind the door:


So Elmo is moulting. This morning we were covered in feathers. The flat is full of them. I’m surprised Elmo has any left on him by the rate they are falling off. He was preening himself last night and kept pulling loose ones out. Then he’d get scared of them and run away. Like I’ve said many times before, I don’t think Elmo knows that he’s a pigeon. He’s afraid of feathers!

Here’s a photo of him looking at a feather he’s not sure about:


This is one side of keeping pigeons that can be a problem: feathers everywhere when they moult! But, it’s a small price to pay to have them in our lives! :)

(More about moulting: The facts about moulting)