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I found Elmo on the window sill again today! Yay!

I could hear him cooing through the closed door and when I opened it I saw him bowing up and down on the window sill, cooing to a woodpigeon that was in the garden. Silly boy!

As soon as Elmo saw me though, he flew onto the bed and danced over to me – obviously happy to see me!

Elmo’s flying has been getting better (who’s been giving him lessons?). When we first received Elmo he was understandably unsure about us and his new home, and he would do some nervous backflips when he tried to fly. Over time, as he realised how much we love him and how safe his home is, Elmo’s flying became more controlled and less erratic.

Although Elmo cannot fly properly, he does like to have a good flap every now and then. He’ll stretch his wings and lift off from the sofa and land on the floor – then take off from the floor for a few more short flights up.

Once Elmo actually flew at Richard when Richard was mock-running away from him! He’s never done that before and hasn’t done it since, but it was very impressive.

Here’s some old footage of Elmo home alone (taken from the webcam):

Elmo greeting us through the window:

And when we opened the door:

At a Christmas party with my husband. It’s a sit-down dinner with cheesy disco music blaring in the background. Lots of drinks. Maybe some dancing later.

The subject: pigeons. More specifically: Our pet pigeons!

Five minutes into the conversation I realise how crazy we both sound. Richard is showing the people at the table Elmo fast asleep at home as seen from the webcam via Richard’s phone. … We’re proud as new parents, showing off our “babies”.

Somehow I doubt we’ve come across as sane, reasonable people. “Hippie” and “crazy” come to mind.

Oh well. Return home late to a very happy pigeon dancing around our feet and greeting us with enthusiasm. We were only gone for about 4 hours but Elmo’s acting like he hasn’t seen us all day.

We didn’t disturb Georgie. She was fast asleep in her cage.

* * * * * * *

On another subject, here’s Georgie hard at work:




And now time to rest:


Here’s a webcam of a pigeon nest with parents and babies: http://www.beleefdelente.nl/torenvalk

(Sorry for the short post – we have guests staying with us so I’m a bit busy.)

Today was officially Elmo’s live webcam debut.

In the morning he spent most of his time at his new favourite location: the window ledge! Here he likes to watch the feral pigeons visiting the garden for breakfast, lunch and dinner, and also to catch a glimpse of our lovely neighbour who also feeds the birds in our (shared) garden.

Then, after lunch, Elmo got camera shy and hid for a few hours by the door out of sight of the webcam. I image he just fell asleep. :)

I don’t know how many people logged on to see him live, but I hope you weren’t too disappointed when Elmo went out of view for so long. To be honest, Elmo does spend a lot of his time sleeping so you might not be very entertained when you go to view him on the webcam. But it is nice to check in on him in real time and see what he’s doing.

PigeonCam Snapshot

Elmo on the window ledge

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.


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.

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.



Elmo home alone, cooing at the pigeons outside.

… webcam?

Last week my wife wrote about the wireless IP webcam we bought to keep an eye on Elmo.

Well, the nifty piece of kit arrived on Wednesday last week, and after a little configuring I managed to get it up and running in time for my holiday to Denmark.

I have to say, the novelty of keeping an eye on your most precious beloved pet is fantastic. If he’s in the corner of the room I just pan the camera around, or tilt it down.

Elmo slept for the most part and I could see and hear him cooing away for no apparent reason at times.

All in all, a great purchase!

Next, I need one for Georgie, and I’ll be getting an outdoor wireless IP webcam to keep an eye on our birdfeeder.

Taking bird spotting to the next level!

Richard bought a wireless remote pan/tilt network camera (a.k.a. a webcam) today. We’ve decided to get one to be able to observe Elmo’s behaviour during the day while we are at work. I’m not expecting to see anything spectacular (let me guess? He’ll be sleeping, sleeping, and sleeping some more, then eating, grooming, and maybe a bit of dancing around my woolly socks), but it’ll make interesting viewing since we can never be certain what Elmo’ll be doing on his own. Does he miss us a lot? Is he bored? Or is he enjoying a bit of solitude and reserving his energy for when we get back (when he can perform his mad pigeon welcome dance!).

I could be completely wrong here though. Maybe Elmo gets up to all sorts of adventures while we are away. Are the wild pigeons outside talking to him through the window? Does Elmo have a secret hiding place under the bed?

The best bit about the webcam is that when we’re away on holiday we can make sure Elmo is ok.

Georgie’s webcam will have to wait till after payday though.