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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).

Last night I watched a movie and made some popcorn. I decided not to give any to Elmo and Georgie and thought I could keep them away while I enjoyed the popcorn.

That’s not quite what happened. I sat down on the sofa and immediately Georgie was up from her nest and walking towards me. I gently pushed her back to her nest, she cooed angrily and started walking back to me. I did it again but she again cooed angrily and walked towards me. We must have done this for about 5 mintues. Georgie was not going to give up!!

While this was happening Elmo was on the other side of me on the sofa arm-rest and had his neck extended as he stared intently at the bowl of popcorn. He was still for a while then jumped into the bowl. Great! I quickly put him back on the arm-rest and he continued to stare at the popcorn, willing it to leap into his beak. He looked like he wanted to jump back into the bowl so I gave him a firm ‘No Elmo’ and held the bowl away (as if that was going to stop him!). Meanwhile Georgie was still advancing with shear determination. She was single-minded in her goal.

I did manage to eat most of the popcorn before it got too ridiculous. Then I caved in and gave them a few pieces. They went mad for it!! Biting my fingers in their eagerness to break the popcorn into pieces. When I stopped holding it up to them Georgie started waggling her shoulders and twitching her wings. She looked like a little squeaker again! It was so adorable. It was as if she was saying at the same time, “Please mummy, can I have some more,” and “That was delicious mummy, thank you so much.”

Next time I will be forced to put them away in the bedroom when I want to have a quiet evening eating popcorn and watching a movie. Silly pigeons!

My wife and I like to snuggle up with the pigeons and watch a good movie, and there’s nothing better than a nice bowl of popcorn to tuck into while we watch.

Our pigeons however go absolutely nutty for popcorn! At the smell of the stuff Georgie starts running around franticly pecking the air, and Elmo charges the bowl! To wash it all down Georgie loves nothing more than a nice cup of hot chocolate :)

P.S. As pointed out by commenter Charis, chocolate is indeed toxic to all animals due to the compound ‘Theobromine’. Humans are able to metabolise this compound whereas birds, dogs, cats, etc. can’t. Birds are more susceptible due to their smaller size and faster metabolism.

Georgie is the only one of our birds who likes hot chocolate, as it’s primarily milk and a small amount of cocoa we felt this would be ok in very small doses (a couple of sips once every 2 or so months). Really not such a good idea though.

P.P.S. We are happy to announce that Georgie is no longer having any hot chocolate as we don’t want to take any risks concerning her health.