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I simply LOVE this photo of Mandee, a pet homing pigeon, by the sea:

Mandee by the seaside

It portrays a lovely seaside break – sea, sand and sunshine!! I love the parasol and little picnic basket!! :D (The pigeon nappy is very cute!)

Mandee has been adopted by Cheryl Dickinson, a volunteer of MickaCoo (a pigeon rescue in San Francisco). Here’s her website with stories about her adopted king pigeons: www.cheryldickinson.com/kings.htm

MickaCoo, a division of Mickaboo Companion Bird Rescue, is dedicated to the rescue of doves and pigeons. They are in desperate need of more pigeon adopters – so please consider helping them by either adopting a few of the many pigeons and doves that need a forever home, or by helping them financially in their search for adopters! Thank you!

I would love to see some of your holiday photos with your pigeons, so please feel free to leave a comment so I can email you back (I don’t like leaving my email address in case of spam).

Thank you! :)

Here’s Elmo on holiday at a caravan park in Cornwall in 2009:

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Elmo drying off in the sun after a bath


We are planning to visit the Seychelles some year soon and one of the things on my to-do list is to observe the bird life there. (I’m afraid I’m one of those people who enjoys doing things on a holiday – lying on the beach doing nothing isn’t something I like to experience more than once on a holiday. Since I will never get that sun-kissed look I don’t see the point in trying. Seeing the sights and doing some activities is more my thing.)

Richard is half Seychellois so he’s quite eager to take me out to see his old haunts. Although I’m not the most comfortable in humid, hot climates (I am half Finnish after all!) the Seychelles islands look like amazingly beautiful places to visit and I’m quite eager to do so.

There are apparantly 6 species of pigeons/doves that can be found in the Seychelles (out of 308 species in the world), which are:

  1. Seychelles Blue-Pigeon Alectroenas pulcherrima (an endemic species)
  2. Comoro Blue-Pigeon Alectroenas sganzini
  3. Madagascar Turtle-Dove Streptopelia picturata
  4. Eurasian Turtle-Dove Streptopelia turtur (species rarely or accidentally occurs there)
  5. Zebra Dove Geopelia striata (an introduced species)
  6. Rock Pigeon Columba livia (an introduced species)

Click on the names above for information on the pigeons.

There are a couple of books I will most likely need for the trip to help me with bird identification over there (I better start saving!):

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by Adrian Skerrett (Paperback)
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by Mike Hill (Paperback)
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The blue pigeons of Seychelles look really funky – love their red faces! :) When we finally go there I hope to sight many of them and will report back on my findings.

Seychelles Blue Pigeon

Comoro Blue Pigeon

Madagascar Turtle-dove


We returned late last night from our holiday and we couldn’t wait to see our darling pigeons! Elmo was fast asleep when we arrived, however, as soon as he saw us he rushed around in greeting – he was so happy to see us!!

Georgie on the other hand was a bit stand-offish. I think she was annoyed with me for having gone away. She was also tired and so after a quick cuddle and kiss I put her back to her cage to sleep. The next morning Georgie started to warm to me once she realised that I was back for real. Looking a bit scruffy because she’s moulting, Georgie is otherwise loving me in her usual wonderful way. I have to say that we missed our darling pigeons and are happy to be back with them.

I took the day off to spend time with the pigeons, as well as to unpack and do the laundry and Elmo was delighted. He kept following me around, cooing and beckoning me to him. After I had breakfast he spent an hour on my lap, snuggled up to me. … Now as we all know, Elmo doesn’t usually like me – he’s Richard’s bird – however, because Elmo hadn’t seen me for a while he didn’t mind my company at all! Once Richard got back from work though, Elmo was back to his normal attacking and telling off! Cheeky lad!

Here’s a video of Elmo loving my company and attention this morning:

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Georgie helping me with the laundry!

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Georgie is moulting and looking a bit scruffy.

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Elmo is very happy to see us!

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Elmo on my lap!


Welcome to PigeonCam!

We bought an IP camera in order to keep an eye on our precious pets while we are away on holiday. It’s a great bit of hardware and I’d recommend it to anyone. To access our PigeonCam click on the “PigeonCam” icon on the right of our website. It is early days yet with this so please bear with us. Changes may later occur. At the moment you will only be able to view Elmo (who has the run of the bedroom while we are at work).

Pigeon Hiding Places

Elmo can normally be found:

  • On the foot of the bed, near the window
  • On the chest of drawers directly beneath PigeonCam
  • On the covered bedside table
  • By the door (to the right of PigeonCam)

Operating Hours

PigeonCam is normally online between 8:30am and 4:30pm Mon – Fri.

Instructions

The image updates every 1.5s. You can control the camera using the arrows which overlay the stream or the arrow keys on your keyboard.

NB: Please be patient when controlling PigeonCam. The image only refreshes every 1.5s so your control will NOT be immediately evident.


Last year Richard and I went on holiday to Cornwall (with Elmo, read more: “Oh we do like to be beside the seaside”) and we visited a wildlife park called Porfell Wildlife Park & Sanctuary in Trecangate. While we were walking about looking at the different animals they had there (a variety of wildlife, farm and domestic animals) we were stopped by a very familiar sound – a pigeon cooing.

We were at an enclosure that had different types of birds in it (mainly ground dwelling birds such as pheasants) and we searched for the pigeon that we could hear calling us but couldn’t see. Then suddenly a beautiful white and grey fancy pigeon hopped down from its hiding place and started cooing and dancing for us. We caught it on video (we had to take out the sound because we sounded like idiots as we fawned over the pigeon!).

What a beauty! And such a lovely character – very human-oriented. This year when we go to Cornwall we’ll go see if the pigeon is still there. I hope so!

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-12°C means little to this little guy :)

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=e0mvHXKg2bI

Richard and I went away to Finland to see my family for 6 days but we had to leave Elmo and Georgie home. The cheap airline we used doesn’t take animals, and even if they did, I wouldn’t subject our pigeons to a flight unless they were in a seat next to us. (The thought of Elmo and Georgie alone in a noisy, cold cargo hold, scared and confused, makes me shudder. Couldn’t do that to them!)

Anyway, so we were away visiting family and skiing, skating and sledding in lovely snow-covered Finland, whilst Elmo and Georgie stayed at home with a team of pet sitters popping over to care for them. We really went all out to ensure that they had regular visits during the day and had the interaction they need.

Georgie was sitting on eggs when we left so her care was pretty straight-forward: simply clean out her cage, give her fresh seed and water, and let her out for a few minutes to flap about. She doesn’t like to be away from her eggs for long so I left a note explaining this all (a long note. … Actually it came to three A4 sheets of instructions and info. :) One cannot be too careful when it comes to our animals).

Elmo was the same: clean, feed and exercise, with the addition of play and chill-out time for a few hours. Elmo sleeps free in the bedroom and is allowed to roam about the flat when someone is there. He loves and needs human company, something we made sure he had whilst we were away.

So, with three people roped in to help (mum, my co-worker and a professional pet sitter) we had the 6 days covered. We also had the webcam in the bedroom so we could check in on Elmo. It made our time away much better when we could have a moment to see what Elmo was doing. I advise any pet owner to set up a webcam. Gives you peace of mind! The downfall is that you miss your animals more because you can see them but cannot be with them.

We checked on Elmo one day when we knew my co-worker was coming to spend time with him and Georgie. When Elmo saw her he went bananas! He ran about and did his mad pigeon dance, cooing and bowing away, and when she knelt down by the bed he rushed at her and bumped into her face! He was so happy! It made us very happy to see him greet his pet sitter like that. And we knew he and George were in good hands.

Georgie stayed on her eggs for the first two days we were away, then she decided she’d had enough and spent her time sitting on or near her pet sitters. I was worried that she might act up and they’d not know what to do since Georgie’s behaviour can be hard to read when she’s incubating, however, all went smoothly. Georgie was a very good girl and didn’t give anyone any trouble.

We got home late in the night and Elmo was very happy to see us. Georgie wasn’t impressed with being woken up in the night (she gave me some pecks and cooed angrily), and Elmo was tired, so we quickly gave them cuddles and kisses and went to bed. The next morning Elmo woke us up with cooing which he hasn’t done in a long time. He was obviously eager to wake us up so he could be with us. :D Sweetheart!

Ps. We saw some pigeons in the town of Tampere (see ‘Finnish pigeons’ post dated Feb 12th 2010) which was nice, however, it was very cold and I felt very bad for them. … But they were born in Finland and live there so I’m sure they get by during the winter.

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A feral pigeon is supposed to weigh anything from 230g to 400g, a racing pigeon 400-600g and a woodpigeon 284-615g (figures received from a wildlife rescue centre). In my eyes Georgie is small for a feral pigeon. When we first got her I was worried that she was too thin and small so I gave her fatty foods such as peanuts to help her gain weight. Georgie has now filled out a bit but I believe she’ll always be dainty and petite.

I started recording her weight just to monitor any ups and downs:

  • 295g – 7.4.09
  • 273g – 18.4.09 (She lost weight because when we went on holiday we left her with a friend and I think Georgie got a bit stressed that we weren’t there.)
  • 294g – 14.5.09
  • 318g – 13.6.09
  • 323g – 23.8.09
  • 317g – 27.9.09
  • 344g – 17.11.09 (Georgie was with egg.)
  • 322g – 21.1.10
  • 325g – 10.2.10 (Before we went on holiday. Georgie stayed at home with pet sitters visiting frequently.)
  • 322g – 16.2.10 (When we returned from holiday. Georgie didn’t loose much weight this time, which is good.)

Elmo is a bigger boy and here’s his weight chart:

  • 360g – 7.4.09
  • 352g – 18.4.09
  • 343g – 14.5.09 (Elmo was moulting.)
  • 350g – 13.6.09
  • 357g – 23.8.09
  • 348g – 27.9.09
  • 354g – 17.11.09
  • 358g – 21.1.10
  • 342g – 10.2.10 (Before we went on holiday. Elmo stayed at home with pet sitters visiting frequently.)
  • 350g – 16.2.10 (When we returned from holiday. Elmo gained a lot of weight! He obviously wasn’t stressed that we were gone. He loved the pet sitters [more on this later] but was very glad to have us back.)

Here are a few Finnish pigeons we found in Tampere, Finland. It was -10 degrees Celcius and there was/is lots of snow and ice about. We felt like gathering all the pigeons up and taking them inside for bed and breakfast. Maybe we should start a winter pigeon hotel?

:D

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Richard has been away on holiday for 4 days, I was away for a day and a half. During the time we were both away my mum-in-law and a woman pet sitter were drafted in to check on our pigeons.

I returned home this morning to find Elmo almost tripping over himself in excitement and happiness in seeing me. Georgie had laid an egg and was a bit more subdued as she was still egg-heavy with the second egg.

Elmo did his mad pigeon dance and would not leave me alone as I wandered about the flat sorting out things. If this is how he greets me, his least favourite human, then how is he going to react when Richard, his favourite person, gets home tonight?!