Posted by: Ross Gardner | January 24, 2014

Pigeons in the rain

A decidedly wet Woodpigeon (Columba palumbus).  Ross Gardner 2014

A decidedly wet Woodpigeon (Columba palumbus). Ross Gardner 2014

Have you ever wondered why Woodpigeons more often than not will make no apparent effort to shelter from heavy rain?  This one (above) photographed on our roof is a perfect case in point.  Perhaps you have never filled your head with such trivial ponderings, but I think I might have discovered an answer, even if only in the instance of the one bird that was perched on the garden fence below.

This other pigeon, I am quite sure, was taking a shower.  I first noticed it sat on the fence with its left wing stretched upwards, almost looking like some birds do when they ‘play injured’ to lure predators away from their young.  After a few seconds it began preening.  On repeating this little routine it turned its attentions to the other wing, at which point I had fetched my camera and grabbed a shot through the window.  As before, the process was repeated 2 or 3 times, before the bird seemed satisfied with its ablutions and proceeded to sit, as they always seem to do, quite motionless in the teeming rain.

If it had them, would it have washed behind its ears?  Ross Gardner 2014

If it had them, would it have washed behind its ears? Ross Gardner 2014

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Responses

  1. Must have some very clean pigeon over here in the West Country then, with all the wet stuff we’ve been getting!

    • I bet you have, but do they wash behind their ears like ours do?

  2. I love watching pigeons out of my window, when I lived in wrexham I had a fantastic view of the horizon and would loose myself watching them fly in formation around the Cathedral spire 🙂

  3. Pigeons get a bad rap. As cumbersome as they sometimes look on the ground, they can almost be graceful on the wing. A worthwhile addition to any cathedral spire, I’m sure. Hope the back is feeling better.


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