Street pigeons, also known as feral pigeons, are a common sight in many urban areas. While some people view them as pests, others enjoy feeding them and observing their behavior. If you want to feed street pigeons, it’s important to know what foods are safe and nutritious for them, as well as what to avoid.
Safe and Nutritious Foods for Street Pigeons
Some safe and nutritious foods for street pigeons include:
- Pigeon feed: This is a specially-formulated food that provides the essential nutrients pigeons need to stay healthy. You can find it at pet stores or online.
- Seeds: Pigeons enjoy a variety of seeds, including sunflower seeds, safflower seeds, and millet. You can buy these at pet stores or bird supply stores.
- Grains: Pigeons also like grains such as corn, wheat, and barley. You can buy these at feed stores or in the bulk section of grocery stores.
- Fruits and vegetables: Pigeons can eat a variety of fruits and vegetables, such as grapes, apples, carrots, and lettuce. Make sure to chop them up into small pieces so the pigeons can easily eat them.
Note: Apple seeds are toxic for birds. See “Toxic Foods for Birds” for more information on unsafe foods.
Foods to Avoid Feeding Street Pigeons
Some foods can be harmful to street pigeons and should be avoided. These include:
- Bread: While many people think of bread as a common food to feed pigeons, it can actually be harmful to them. Bread lacks the essential nutrients that pigeons need and can cause health problems if they eat too much of it.
- Junk food: Pigeons should not eat junk food such as chips, candy, or fast food. These foods are not nutritious and can cause health problems for pigeons.
- Moldy or spoiled food: Make sure to only feed pigeons fresh, clean food. Moldy or spoiled food can be harmful to their health.
How to Feed Street Pigeons Safely and Responsibly
If you decide to feed street pigeons, it’s important to do so safely and responsibly. Here are some tips:
- Don’t feed them too much: Feeding pigeons too much can cause them to become dependent on human food and can lead to health problems.
- Don’t feed them in busy areas: Feeding pigeons in busy areas such as sidewalks or roads can be dangerous for both the pigeons and people.
- Clean up after feeding: Make sure to clean up any food scraps or bird droppings after feeding pigeons. This helps keep the area clean and reduces the risk of disease transmission.
- Be respectful of others: Some people may not appreciate pigeons or may not want them near their homes or businesses. Be respectful of others and their property when feeding pigeons.
Feeding street pigeons can be a fun and rewarding experience, but it’s important to do so safely and responsibly. By providing safe and nutritious food, avoiding harmful foods, and being respectful of others, you can help keep both the pigeons and the community healthy and happy.