Matilda's List - An international list and directory of pigeon friendly veterinarians and rehabbers.
MickaCoo Pigeon & Dove Rescue - A division of Mickaboo Companion Bird Rescue dedicated to the rescue of doves and pigeons in the San Francisco Bay area.
People for the Preservation of Pigeons - A blog that supports pro-pigeonism, strives to eliminate pigeon persecution and prejudice, and promotes the positive portrayal of pigeons in society.
Pigeon & Pet Chat - A forum where members can discuss all things about pigeons; whether they are pet pigeons, wild pigeons, fancy or homing pigeons.
Pigeon Aid UK - A site that provides advice for those who have picked up a sick, injured or baby pigeon and need guidance.
Pigeon and Dove Rescue - A website aimed at providing help for anyone that has rescued a pigeon or dove by providing details of pigeon friendly rescue centres, vets and guidance on how to care for orphaned, sick or injured pigeons.
Pigeon Angels - A forum dedicated to the support & care of all pigeons, feral or fancy, that find themselves in jeopardy.
Pigeon Blog - A bona fide urban pigeon telling it how it is for the pigeons of London.
Pigeon Control Advisory Service (PiCAS) - PiCAS specialises in the provision of non-lethal, holistic and sustainable bird control systems, which will result in a permanent reduction in bird numbers.
Pigeon Control Resource Centre (PCRC) - An online resource for anyone with a pigeon-related problem. All information and advice provided on the website is geared towards completely solving pigeon control problems by the use of humane and non-lethal control methods.
Pigeon Protection - Website aiming to provide accurate information about pigeons and pigeon control in all its forms and to prevent pigeons from suffering and dying as a result of human actions based on misinformation.
Pigeon Tales - Interesting blog following the lives of a family of feral pigeons living with the author.
Pigeon-Talk - A global forum open to all pigeon lovers.
Rescue Report - Wonderful blog about fostering and adopting pigeons (from MickaCoo Pigeon & Dove Rescue).
Urban Wildlife Society - Their mission is to promote appreciation for all animals, particularly pigeons, that share the city and suburbs with humans. The website is filled with information and articles about inhumane pest control and offers advice on alternative measures.
Wild Bird Fund - Website for the non-profit organization that provides assistance for wild birds, including feral pigeons, in New York City.
Pet pigeons - what we mean Explaining what we mean when we talk about keeping pigeons as pets. In brief: We mean keeping tame, imprinted or disabled pigeons that would not otherwise survive in the wild.
This year we’ve been blessed with a wonderful sunny May Bank Holiday weekend (in the South East of England at least), and I’ve certainly been taking advantage of it and had a wonderful time out with Elmo and Georgie in the garden.
It’s such a pleasure to know that my disabled, indoor pigeons are gaining so much from being in the sun. And I know they enjoy it too because of their behaviour. Georgie wouldn’t stop sunbathing – stretching out her wing and tail feathers to maximise their exposure to the sunshine. She was loving it! … When she started panting I knew she was a bit too hot so I gave her a drink of water and put her in the shade to cool off.
Elmo simply wanted to stand on the picnic blanket and preen by my side. He kept stepping closer and closer to me in between bouts of preening until he was right against my leg – which he then started tickling with his beak (as if he was preening it).
I really do hope this summer will be a sunny one so Elmo and Georgie have more goodness in the sun!
Earlier last week I saw a lovely brown coloured feral pigeon in our garden:
We’ve had one before (see: Brown pigeon) so it may be the parent of this one. Such a pretty colour!
No sooner had Elmo decided he had incubated the fake eggs for long enough (9 days) when Georgie thought it was her turn and laid an egg! So now she’s all moody and broody while Elmo is back to normal. Go figure!
Georgie lays an egg.
We were blessed with the sun shining throughout the weekend and so we spent most of our time out in the garden with our two disabled pigeons. They love to sunbathe and enjoy pecking at the grass and eating bits of dirt. I hope we have more sunny days so I can take them out often during the spring and summer. We sure need it after the dreary winter!
Looking at the photos I took of Elmo I can see how much he loved last weekend:
Georgie loves it when I sing or hum to her. She finds certain songs irresistible, such as ‘Mmm mmm mmm mmm’ by the Crash Test Dummies. She also likes the Dr Who theme tune.
I took a video of Georgie’s reaction to my off tune humming:
As you can see, Georgie gets aroused. … Silly girl. I often tell her off for being so rude. Georgie will present herself on odd occasions, sometimes without any obvious reason for her arousal. I guess she is just in love and likes to show it.
(As I’m watching the video Georgie is getting excited over hearing my voice through the computer!)
In other news, Elmo is still broody and sitting on his fake eggs:
I’m not sure how long we’ll allow him to incubate but he seems content enough to perform his ‘daddy’ duties for now. When Elmo gets bored of it all we’ll take away the eggs and hopefully Elmo will revert back to his normal cuddly cute self.
I’d like to leave you with some photos we took of us in the garden with Elmo and Georgie on a sunny afternoon last month:
I’m happy to announce that the problem of Elmo’s unhappiness has been solved!!
Elmo is broody!!!
I’d like to thank everyone for your comments on yesterdays blog post directing us towards this conclusion!!
Last night Richard placed two fake eggs in Elmo’s nest and Elmo IMMEDIATELY sat on them. It was like he has been waiting these past few weeks for Richard to lay them for him (I bet Elmo is thinking, “What took you so long?”). The only reason I originally dismissed the idea that Elmo was broody when we first started noticing his moodiness is because Elmo was attacking Richard as viciously as he was attacking me. In my mind that didn’t add up (why attack your mate?). But having now read back a few of my previous notes about Elmo being broody, this was what he did the last time he was broody. I just didn’t remember it.
I feel bad for Elmo that it took us this long to figure things out. We won’t be making that mistake again. Elmo is now sitting on his eggs and although he is still attacking me, he seems settled and content to be finally incubating. He’s no longer pecking Richard’s fingers and has been twitching happily to him. I am so relieved!!
I received an email from the hospital manager about Pidge’s visit to an avian vet who checked him over and concluded that Pidge has arthritis in his ‘elbow’ joint which has fused together, so Pidge is now using his leg as a prop, which would certainly explain why Pidge is unable to stand up properly anymore.
The darling boy will now be living permanently indoors with his mate, Dora, for company. Since Pidge also likes people, he’ll be happy to receive a lot of love from the rescue centre staff and volunteers.
Remember when I wrote about Elmo stealing Georgie’s igloo nest? (see: Elmo takes revenge).
Well, Georgie reclaimed her nest and Elmo was left feeling bereft. He kept walking up to the place where the igloo nest used to be and he’d stand there looking lost and a bit sad. So I made him a little tent for him to sit under but he wasn’t very impressed with my efforts.
Elmo in his 'tent'
So you can guess what happened next. … We got Elmo his very own igloo nest and he LOVES it!!
Elmo in his new nest
When I first placed it down Elmo spread his tail feathers out and started cooing and dancing to the nest, as if he was courting it!! I could tell he was very impressed.
So now both pigeons have two nests to choose from each (the guinea pig bed as well as the cat igloo bed) and there shouldn’t be any disputes over property.
Elmo has finally had enough of Georgie stealing his nest and food. When she wants to lay an egg Georgie prefers to do so in Elmo’s nest, even though he doesn’t like her and will attack her if she gets too close. But Georgie doesn’t stop trying and has succeeded many times (please see: Valentine present, Sneaky George, Sneaky George part 2).
So Elmo is taking revenge. He’s now stealing her nest!! I caught him in the act:
We’ve had some lovely sunny weather lately and, seeing how it can disappear so quickly, I’ve been taking Georgie and Elmo outside whenever the sun shines in the garden. They both love the sunshine and have been preening, pecking at the grass and dirt, and just enjoying themselves in the heat. Of course, the direct sunshine is good for their bones, feathers, and general health, but I think they just like the heat and the light after a dark winter.
Some of you here in the United Kingdom might have seen the fourth episode of Winterwatch on BBC Two last week where Adam Rogers, the creator of The Feral Pigeon Project, spoke to Chris Packham about feral pigeons and their colour diversity. This episode was greatly anticipated by many pigeon people (word spread on the net) and it was wonderful to hear a positive message about feral pigeons – since there are so few programmes on TV that concentrate on these amazing birds.
As mentioned, the message on this episode of Winterwatch was positive, concentrating on the intelligence and uniqueness of pigeons, and I hope many people feel inspired to help Adam Rogers with his research into pigeon colour diversity. Please visit his website for further information: The Feral Pigeon Project
A little side note here: many of us watching the programme immediately noticed the feet of the ferals and wanted to help. A common question appeared online as to why the ferals feet were deformed, which Adam quickly replied (on his blog): Deformed feet – what is the cause?
I really hope more positive messages of pigeons get on TV and we can start to dispel the myths spread about pigeons. Maybe Elmo and Georgie should go on “Britain’s Strangest Pets” or something similar? (Although I don’t like the way those types of programmes portray the owners, so maybe something more scientific would be better.)
A zoology student from Cornwall has appeared on BBC Winterwatch to talk about his project to record the national pigeon population.
Adam Rogers, who studies at the University of Exeter’s Tremough Campus in Penryn, appeared on the programme leading a project to investigate plumage trends found in the once-domesticated birds.
When domestic animals return to the wild and breed, future generations usually take on their natural dull colour, yet urban pigeons have retained their brightness and variety of plumage.
The 29-year-old undergraduate wants as many people as possible to spend a few minutes counting the number of pigeons with different plumage patterns in their local high street.
Participants can then report their sightings on the Feral Pigeon Project website, which also contains a handy guide to pigeon colours.
“Pigeons can easily be overlooked as we go about our daily lives,” said Mr Rogers. ”Yet these seemingly familiar birds have many secrets still to reveal. The fact that they have been successful is clear, yet the means behind their success is less understood.
“No other creature causes such contention as the wild pigeon – some people call pigeons ‘rats with wings’, others are simply indifferent, but I call them the Super Dove.
“They may not be as glamorous as many of the exotic animals a person could choose to study but take the time to look beneath the feathers and they’re just as superbly adapted as any of the African big five.”
He added that people don’t need to be pigeon experts to get involved in the project, as the various types are easy to tell apart.
Adam is hoping that his research will reveal how pigeons are adapting to human influences, as well as sparking people’s interest in wildlife and nature. He will examine aspects such as whether breeding habits are changing in towns where feeding bans have been imposed.
The Feral Pigeon Project appeared on BBC Two’s Winterwatch yesterday with a focus on the pigeons’ ability to breed in the middle of winter. Adam described working with the BBC production team as “eye-opening”.
“Filming with Chris Packham was a fantastic experience, he’s clearly a very knowledgeable naturalist and is truly passionate about opening people’s eyes to the wildlife around them,” he said.