Tuesday, October 15, 2013

Does a wood pigeon's breeding season ever end?

This mother and child combo turned up outside our living room window this morning. Wood pigeons have been breeding in the garden for several years, but I think this is the latest-ever squab. It must have left the nest during the gales and driving rain over the last couple of days, but seems to be in good fettle, pestering the life out of its mother.

More scenes from wood pigeon family life here.























The relentless rise of the wood pigeon as a garden bird has been a notable ornithological trend over the last decade. It's now the fifth most frequent bird species in gardens. In many ways wood pigeons are charming, especially during their courtship, but they are the bird equivalent of a Hoover on a bird table, gobbling up the food at a phenomenal rate. 


6 comments:

  1. I think breeding rate is only surpassed by Collared Dove's.
    I had 20 birds in the garden today.

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    1. We get quite a few collared doves but not as many as we used to. I noticed the other day that there's speculation that collared doves light be decreasing in gardens because of competition from wood pigeons
      http://www.britishbirds.co.uk/news-and-comment/collared-doves-disappearing-from-gardens-is-the-woodpigeon-to-blame

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  2. The Woodpigeons are costing me a small fortune in food too Phil. Just this week I've got youngsters coming too. I believe that most of the dove/pigeon family will breed throughout the year. We get roughly the same number of Collared Doves as Woodpigeons. I keep a daily record of numbers and it's surprising how often they match each other one-for-one. Usually get about six at a time of each.

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    1. We seem to get fewer collared doves than we used to Richard, but they are still regular nesters in the garden. I'm going to have to think of ways to protect some of the food from wood pigeons, though...

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  3. I've seen Woodpigeons incubating eggs in late December, and with newly-fledged young in January, February and March. It's true, their breeding season never ends.

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    1. I read somewhere that autumn sown crops are leading to a wood pigeon population explosion, providing them with food through the winter...

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