Two posts in one day is a bit much, but once my mind starts pondering, it’s best to get it written down!

I hail from Trowbridge, a leafy(ish) town in sunny Wiltshire, where a pigeon scandal is rife. A few years ago, ASBOs were handed out to pensioners for ‘excessively feeding pigeons’ and supposedly causing a massive over population. Granted, there are many pigeons in Trowbridge, possibly in excess of 1000 (I cannot find exact surveyed figures anywhere so this is an estimate).

Going by figures stated by Johnson and Janiga (1995), each pigeon must consume 35g of food on average per feed with generally two feeds per day. Therefore, 1000 pigeons, needing 70g of food per day, totals 70kg of food. If an average loaf of bread weighs 750g, then 93.3 loaves of bread would need to be fed to the pigeons daily. No mean feat for a pensioner!

Clearly, it’s inconceivable that such a large amount of food could be provided, even by ‘excessive feeders’, not to mention the costs spiralling (around £326 per week if feeding bread, far more than any pension would provide).

Studies have shown that feral pigeons consume far more ‘natural’ food than one would imagine, as clearly such large flocks could not live on bread alone.

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