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Rock Pigeon Pest Profile

rock_pigeon_01 rock_pigeon_02Common Name:
Feral Pigeon

Scientific Name:
Columba livia

Order and Family:
Columbidae, Pigeons and Doves

Description:
13 1/2″ (34 cm). The common pigeon of towns and cities. Chunky, with short rounded tail. Typically bluish-gray with 2 narrow black wing bands and broad black terminal tail band; white rump. There are many color variants, ranging from all white through rusty to all black.

 

Food:
Seeds and grain make up most of the Rock Pigeons’ diet on farms, but in cities, popcorn, bread, and other human food is usually part of their diet.

Nesting:
2 white eggs in a crude nest lined with sticks and debris, placed on a window ledge, building, bridge, or cliff.

Habitat:
City parks, suburban homes & gardens, and farmlands.

Range:
Native to Old World. Introduced and established in most of North America from central Canada southward.

Discussion:
Everyone knows Rock Pigeons, or domestic pigeons, as city birds that subsist on handouts or country birds that nest in pigeon cotes on farms. Few have seen them nesting in their ancestral home-cliff ledges or high among rocks. Over the centuries, many strains and color varieties have been developed in captivity through selective breeding. Since pigeons have been accused of carrying human diseases, there have been several attempts to eradicate them from our cities, but they are so prolific that little progress has been made in this endeavor.

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