a kind of bird – small to medium-sized stout body with thick heavy feathers – different colours in different kinds – white, grey, blue-grey, red, (some solid colour and some speckled, all together 28 different colours), – short neck, small head, small delicate beak (bill), usually orange or red eyes, pointed wings, relatively long tail, red or pink legs with long toes and black claws; size: 8-16 inches in length, and weight: the smallest being only 30 grams and the largest being 2 Kg; feeds on (eats) mainly seeds, fruit, other plant matter, and the edibles found around human settlements; lives for 5 years (some individuals in captivity live for 15 years); many sub-species (kinds/breeds), believed to have originated from China, Asia, but now found all over the world, except the coldest parts
female ~~ hen
baby ~~ squab, squeaker
group ~~ flock, kit, flight, loft, dropping
voice ~~ coo; strut
home ~~ nest (for laying eggs and raising squabs); coop (man-made)
The ‘Pacific imperial pigeon’ is the national bird of Tonga, an island nation in the Pacific Ocean near New Zealand.
The ‘yellow-footed green pigeon’ is the state bird of Maharastra, India.
The rock pigeon is the world’s oldest domesticated bird. Studies have shown that the pigeon was domesticated ten thousand years ago!
The pigeons bred for their meat alone are called “utility pigeons”.
They have been bred for their meat, for sport, using in pigeon races, and for carrying small printed messages – from the Roman emperor Julius Caesar to the World War II.
In the present world, some war and crime reporters in the war front send their reports or still photo films by the ‘homing pigeons’!
For their bravery and service in carrying messages during World War II, some pigeons were given bravery medals!!
Pigeons are also used in some scientific laboratory experiments in making some kinds of medicine!
Pigeons are known have very affectionate relations with their mates!
In the last century, the ‘passenger pigeon’, once probably the most numerous of all birds on the planet (thousands of birds in a single flock), was driven to extinction (= wiped out from the face of the earth – not even one bird is found alive now).
Martha, the last known passenger pigeon, died in the Cincinnati, Ohio, USA, on the 1st of September, 1914.