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Wood Pigeon Columba palumbus

Pigeons in winter on the feeding table are big eaters. The birds are very cautious indeed and they have every reason to be, because humans love to eat them, Goshawks love them, foxes are fond of them and so are many other animals. So when you sit in your room in winter and one or more are in your garden then please don't move, because they are very easily scared. In summer they are very fond of your pond, where they will drink regularly. And pigeons can really drink! They don't have to (like most other birds) fill their beak with water and then throw their heads backwards in order to take in the water. Their 'singing' is extremely tiresome. Even though they have lots of natural enemies they are very succesful in breeding in Holland. It's the third bird on the list of most common ones in Holland (the Blackbird and the House Sparrow are the numbers one and two). It is estimated that in 1997 there were some 1.5 million of them in Holland.

This bird belongs to the family of Pigeons (Columbidae). It is very common in our garden and can be seen in Holland all year round. The bird is 16" and weighs 500 grams. It lives in woodlands, parks, gardens, cities and villages mostly. It eats seeds and berries. Compared to the male, the female has a smaller white collar in the neck. The Woodpigeon makes two or even three nests a year in trees. Only two eggs are produced. It takes the eggs only 16 days to hatch. The young remain in the nest for a long time though: it takes them a month to become big enough to fly on their own.

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