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How many years do pigeons live on average and what affects life expectancy

How many years do pigeons live on average and what affects life expectancy


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Pigeons are birds that inhabit all continents of the earth, except Antarctica. They often settle next to a person and, it seems, are closely familiar to us from childhood. However, if you look closely, very few people can answer simple questions related to these birds. For example, not everyone knows what their chicks look like or how old pigeons live. The life expectancy of birds will be discussed further.

How many years do pigeons live?

The answer to this question depends on many factors. Life expectancy is influenced by:

  • food;
  • bird breed;
  • the conditions of her life.

The life of wild pigeons living far from civilization is shorter than that of their counterparts who have settled next to humans. Birds living in a dovecote or at home usually become long-livers among these birds.

Into the wild

In nature, pigeons settle on rocks, in forests, in the mountains, on the steep banks of rivers. On average, wild pigeons live for about 5-8 years. Long-livers among wild birds can live up to 10 years. Many of them die as a result of attacks by predators, fall ill or suffer from a lack of food and clean water.

These birds are thermophilic species, so the birds that settled in the southern regions of our country live longer than those who settled in the north. The species of pigeons living in Asia and Africa can also count on a long life if they are not caught for delicious meat or beautiful plumage, they will not suffer from the spread of infectious diseases, and they will not die after drinking dirty water.

Street pigeons are habitual human neighbors, they are not wild in the full sense, they are accustomed to easily finding food in squares and squares, next to food processing enterprises, canteens and cafes, at city garbage dumps.

In the city, birds settle under the roofs of buildings, they suffer less from dampness and cold, have access to good quality water (clean city ponds, fountains, outdoor pools), so they live longer than their wild counterparts. Of course, city birds can fall prey to cats or dogs, but this does not happen very often. In the wild, a city pigeon can live for 10-15 years.

At home

Pigeons who are lucky enough to be at home are even more fortunate. Having a varied balanced diet, enough vitamins and minerals, without suffering from cold and dampness in winter, and from heat in summer, they live more than 2 times longer than their wild counterparts.

Clean drinking water, vaccinations, systematic veterinary supervision extend the lifespan of pigeons to 18-20 years. Of course, there are risks here too: a fighting pigeon can crash due to the peculiarities of flight or fall victim to an outbreak of infection, but this is very rare. Birds living in cages in an apartment will suffer, perhaps, from loneliness or overeating. In such comfortable conditions, a pigeon, on average, is able to live 18-25 years. After 10-12 years, pigeons are considered old, they are not capable of reproduction.

What can affect the lifespan?

So, the lifespan of pigeons is influenced by the climate in the habitat, the availability of food and water. With an abundance of natural enemies (predators, a bird hunter), one should not count on the long life of birds.

Expert opinion

Zarechny Maxim Valerievich

Agronomist with 12 years of experience. Our best summer cottage expert.

Wild species suffer from close proximity to humans. They have to migrate away from their homes or change habits, mastering a new environment for themselves.

In areas with an unfavorable epidemiological situation, where there are many landfills, garbage, scattered waste, especially in hot climates, pigeons often become victims of various infections or carriers of diseases. In this case, the birds become dangerous to pets and people.

How to determine the age of a bird?

It is impossible to accurately determine the age of the birds. There are 2 periods in the life of birds when it is easier to do this. It is easy to distinguish from other feathered juveniles and birds of venerable age.

Important: for domestic pigeons, to determine their exact age, after birth, they put a ring on their paws with data on the time and place of birth of the bird, and the migration of birds is monitored along the rings.

Chicks less than one month old are covered, interspersed with feathers, with yellow down. They are smaller in size, emit not cooing, but squeak. The chicks' beak is soft, thin and long, with a small dark wax. The eyelids are thin and almost transparent. At 3-4 months, the beak hardens, expands, the wax on it brightens. The eyes turn yellow or orange. At 5 months, the bird reaches puberty. The birds begin to take an interest in the opposite sex.

At 6-7 months, pigeons molt for the first time. In old pigeons, the legs are less intensely colored; after 5 years of life, the pigment gradually discolors. Adult birds have a dense white eyelid.

Record dates

At home, the pigeon lifespan record is 35 years, however, this is unconfirmed data. A bird over 25 years old now lives in England. Her mistress picked up the chick on the street, the pigeon lived with its mistress all its life. Taking care, good nutrition and taking care of the health of birds will significantly increase their lifespan.

Breeders and pigeon breeders in love with their hobby spend a lot of effort on breeding birds with improved characteristics, disease resistance, and strong immunity. This affects the lifespan of birds, it increases.

During the long period of time that pigeons live next to humans, they have learned to take advantage of such a neighborhood. That is why there are less and less wild pigeons, and more and more feathered inhabitants of cities and towns. The task of people is to preserve species that keep away from humans, because it is especially difficult for them in a rapidly changing world.


Watch the video: Interesting and Amazing Facts About Pigeon I Pigeons Sound Types Lifespan Etc Information Video (October 2022).