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There are a few things we simply cannot do in peace because of Georgie and Elmo (our imprinted, disabled, feral pigeons).

We cannot:

  • drink a hot beverage
  • eat crisps, popcorn, toast or anything green
  • read or do anything on the floor

You may be wondering why? Well, for the simple reason that our pigeons will not leave us alone if we do the above mentioned things.

As soon as Georgie hears me stirring any hot beverage (that telltale sound of spoon tinkling against a ceramic mug) she starts dipping her beak down as if she is drinking from the mug. When she realises that the hot drink is nowhere near her, she locates me and tries to get to the drink for a sip, which, of course, is not a good thing for her and which I prevent from happening at all costs. However, it does make for a rather silly dance as I try to sip the drink at an awkward angle with Georgie on my shoulder dipping her beak to do so too. If I push her away she becomes angry and delivers some sharp pecks before she resumes her beak dipping behaviour. She never behaves like this when I’m drinking something cold.

I cannot eat crisps alone because the rustling sound of a crisps packet must mean “Come over and peck at me” in pigeon. Without fail, every time I open a crisps packet at home the sound of that action drives Georgie mad and she jumps over to me to take her share. Now I know that excess salt is bad for any creature so I try my best not to let Georgie eat crisps, however, once again this proves difficult when you have an insistent pigeon on your lap pecking away at the packet and your hands. I often have to put Georgie on the floor while I try to enjoy the crisps in peace, however, more often than not, I have to let my pigeon peck for a while at my salty fingers to get her salt kick (if not, I have one grumpy pigeon on my hands).

Toast is another favourite food item of Georgie’s and it seems she can smell it when it’s on my plate because she’s always there to try to steal a slice, usually with Elmo not far behind.

Elmo has a popcorn addiction. Georgie used to love popcorn too but not anymore (for unknown reasons). My husband and I cannot enjoy a bowl of popcorn in peace when watching a movie because Elmo insists on joining us. We have to break a few pieces up and let Elmo peck at them on the sofa just to keep him busy while we enjoy the bulk of the popcorn. Elmo is also attracted to green food items, spinach and lettuce being his favourite.

Regarding not being able to read or do something on the floor, this is all down to noisy Elmo. Imagine this: you fancy a different scene so you sit on the floor and start playing Solitaire with cards or lay down some magazines to browse through. All of a sudden you hear a thump noise as a pigeon lands on the floor and then makes his way over. You have nothing against a curious pigeon, such behaviour simply shows how wonderful the species is, but you do have something against said pigeon standing smack-bang on top of the cards or magazines. Right in the middle. Looking up at you with, “Whatcha doing?” eyes. He may then start to peck at the items he’s standing on (Photo examples: Elmo boy photos).

Here’s some photos I took this evening:


Our sofa has some storage space under it. Elmo is checking out the new sights from high up.


Elmo boy


Georgie trying her best not to be noticed (since she hates cameras).

It has been a record hot summer in Finland this year – the hottest recorded temperature was 37.2 degrees Celsius (on July 29th). I’m hoping that not too many animals suffered from the excess heat – since they’d normally be used to colder temperatures. (For wintertime, check out: Pigeons in Finland and Finnish pigeons).

Here are some photos of the pigeons we saw this summer:


At the arboretum in Tampere


At the arboretum in Tampere


Chilling out in the sun!


Must be the warmest spot to sunbathe on.


Looking good!


Feral pigeons foraging with the crows and ducks.

We had a coffee in the town centre of Tampere and we were joined by some lovely pigeons, who helped themselves to the left-overs: