Pigeon Appreciation Day

Pigeon Appreciation Day

Pigeon Appreciation Day

Pigeon Appreciation Day is observed and celebrated annually in the United States on June 13th to honor pigeons and their service to this country. It is also sometimes referred to as National Pigeon Day. Pigeons are often underappreciated and considered a nuisance. They are also often seen as dirty and useless. However, you would be surprised to know that there is so much more to these birds than most people realize. They have played a significant role in our history, especially in World War I and II. Cher Ami was a pigeon owned and flown by the U.S. Army Signal Corps in France during World War I. Cher Ami delivered twelve important messages within the American sector at Verdun. Pigeon and war hero, Cher Ami died on June 13, 1919, due to war wounds.

In celebration of Pigeon Appreciation Day, I thought it would be fun to learn more about pigeons. So, here are some interesting and fun facts:

1. They were used to carry messages in World War I and II;

2. They saved thousands of human lives during World War I and II;

3. They have amazing navigational skills and can find their way back to their nest from as much as 1300 miles away (they are even able to do so without knowing where they were transported to or what direction they were moved in);

4. They are highly sociable and will often be found in flocks of 20-30 birds;

5. They mate for life;

6. Baby pigeons can spend as much as 4-5 weeks in the nest and do not leave until they are almost adult-sized;

7. They can fly at altitudes of 6,000 feet or more;

8. They can fly at average speeds of up to 77 mph and have been recorded flying at speeds around 90 mph;

9. They are omnivores and will eat almost anything;

10. They have exceptional hearing and can detect sounds at lower frequencies than humans; and

11. They are often thought of as dirty animals that carry diseases, when they are actually very clean and are not significant transmitters of disease.

Who knows, next time you see a pigeon, maybe you will see them in a little different light and perhaps even have a little bit more tolerance for them.

Happy Pigeon Appreciation Day!