Saturday, April 16, 2016

How Do You Like Your Pigeon Eggs?

The window ledge outside my bedroom is in a niche in the building and protected somewhat from rain and wind in the winter and hot sun in the summer. So it's very popular with the pigeons.

Fried or boiled?
This year we had a mild winter and maybe they didn't hibernate or whatever pigeons do in the winter but my ledge has become a favourite roosting spot. It's actually quite annoying as they coo in the early morning and fight over the space late at night. And you can imagine how many bird droppings have been left.

Usually I clean it all up every couple of months but this year I've left it, promising to clean the ledge and never getting round to it. It got so dirty that I decided to buy some of those spikes so that the birds couldn't sit there.

One day I saw that two birds were having a bit of hanky panky on the ledge and had even brought in a pile of twigs as the basis for their starter home. NO WAY JOSE! I banged on the window and they flew off in fright. I disposed of the twigs and vowed to go to Home Centre for spikes that afternoon.

I just want to say here why it is so important not to have birds on the window ledge. 1. I watched Alfred Hitchcock's 'The Birds' when I was a child and I've never quite trusted them since. 2. Once two birds managed to open the mosquito net and flew in. I ran out of the apartment screaming and my neighbour from upstairs had to come and save my life by shooing them out again. 3. I don't have air conditioning so I need to be able to open the window in the summer.

Reader I left it one day too late. Arriving home with my spikes and seeing one of the birds sitting on the ledge, I did my usual response and banged on the window. Off flew the pigeon and, to my horror, I saw that it had been sitting on an egg.

What was I going to do now?

I remembered reading that the eggs we eat aren't fertilized so you're not killing a chick by eating eggs. I googled it. Not so with wild birds. The egg is very much fertilized (remember the hanky panky?) and will eventually hatch. Oooof.

Two eggs and the beginnings of a nest. Expecting babies trumps squating. 
I tossed and turned all night. What to do? What to do? And then today, another egg had been laid. I gave up. Googling: 'How long till a pigeon egg hatches?' told me it's only 18 days. We'll be away for most of that anyway.

Then I thought again and googled: 'How long till baby birds leave the nest?' About 4 weeks after they hatch apparently. Hmmm end of May. May can be a very hot month here. Damn. Seves me right for procrastinating so long about cleaning the ledge.

And then you have act quickly because, if the birds have felt safe in that location they often lay another round of eggs in or near the original nest. I'll have to act fast to clean it all up and put in my spikes as soon as the chicks leave.

I also read that the second round of eggs can be laid before the first lot of chicks have left the nest. I'm ignoring that bit.

I'm also ignoring my bird lodgers until the end of May as every time I move the curtain they fly off scared and I feel bad about that when they are expecting. But I'm not going to feed the chicks either. I have my limits. *sigh*

Temporarily redundant spikes.


  1. oh my life, had to laugh about the Alfred Hitchcock reference. I have never quiet trusted birds either since watching that film when I was a child !

    It would be interesting to see a baby pigeon ! Never, ever seen a small pigeon have you ?

    1. Not yet but I'm about to in approximately 16 days time. :)

  2. I should send my Pretty cat over to solve all your pigeon problems!
    I remember that Hitchcock Movie. Totally freaked me out.
    Happy hatching!! :-D xx

    1. Thanks, at least the birds are outside. A cat you have to have in the house with you. #notananimallover

  3. Ohh what a dilemma, you'll have to show us pretty pigeon chick pictures in the near future! Mich x

    1. Yes I least I might get a goos photo while I'm sweating to death in my bedroom witht he window shut in 30 degree C. heat.

  4. Look on the bright side - picture of pigeon chicks are blogging gold! :)

    1. True except they've gone. Just disappeared. I think I scared the birds away by opening the window to take the last photo and they never came back. I don't now what happened to the eggs though. I can't imagine that birds can move eggs of a ledge three storeys high and the eggs survive.