Monday, April 10, 2017

Do pigeons get a bum rap?

Birds at Wilderness Park

I thought that yesterday's birds just flew away after being chased by the sisters, but a chance glance upwards revealed dozens of them perched in the tree over my head.

Birds at Wilderness ParkAre these pigeons or doves? It turns out that the two are very similar, almost interchangeable. In fact, what we typically call a pigeon is most likely actually a rock dove.

But while there's very little difference between the two, there is a lot of difference in the names. For the dove, we read things like, "The Dove, on silver pinions, winged her peaceful way." (James Montgomery). But for the pigeon, we hear, "From the sanitary viewpoint, a pigeon is a rat with feathers."

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