Tuesday, December 31, 2019

Rock Pigeon

Here we are at the last day of 2019. At the end of each year, I back up my blog posts with a hard-covered book. This year’s book is fun for me to read, since it covers our move to Washington. As I began the year, I was curious about how many birds I could photograph. Taking pictures of every bird I saw is clearly impossible. My all-time Washington state list is at 219 species. I have images of 145.

In December, eBird challenged birders to submit photographs in at least 20 bird lists. That quest found me stalking feral Rock Pigeons in down-town Olympia. North American birders and ornithologists have mostly ignored Rock Doves. An Old World bird, the species was released in the New World for the first time in 1606 and pigeons quickly escaped into the wild. “Plumage variation is nearly limitless in polymorphic domestic and feral birds” (Lowther and Johnston 2014). Notice that the pigeons in this photo do not appear to be banded.

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