Whether you’ve noticed or not (and whether you like them or not), there have been several pigeon nests on campus recently, baby pigeons included. Julia Kite gives the scoop on this campus bird trend — and includes cute pictures!
It’s understandable if you’ve never seen a baby pigeon. Formally known as “rock doves,” parents build their nests on small ledges, just as their wild ancestors constructed them in crevices on the cliffs of Europe. In the urban environment, this usually means a window ledge, underneath an air conditioner, or anywhere else they can find a stable platform and shelter from the elements.
When it comes to nest-building, pigeons don’t pay much attention to aesthetics. They typically throw a few dead pine needles and small twigs into a pile and let that suffice. Their own droppings, and later those of the chicks, bind this material together — not a pretty sight, and certainly not something you’d want to touch, so if you see a nest, leave it alone. An interesting fact is that pigeons almost always lay two eggs per clutch — never more. The male and female, who are closely bonded, will take turns sitting on the nest for about eighteen days.