Personal experience has shown me that, although many ‘officials’; the top people who work in regional authorities, regardless of their position and title; do not really have much a clue when it comes to pigeon management in their area. This includes reproduction, feeding and general issues which affect them and the birds welfare.
Venus travels several miles each day to her local town to give feed to pigeons in need. With so many clampdowns at the moment; her actions are literally a matter of life or death to many of these birds.
Some people call them ‘vermin’ or ‘flying rats’; but at the end of the day, they have a reason to exist as part of ‘the system’; are sentient creatures, and thus should be treated as such.
Feral pigeons are like stray dogs and cats; people in authority often (very wrongly) have the mindset, and undertake the principle that, if you kill of all (or as many as possible) of the birds in ‘your’ town or region, then they have largely resolved your pigeon ‘problem’ and will become a bird free town or region.
WRONG – just like the issue of stray dogs, culling pigeons often only largely eradicates the older and generally sicker, non breeding birds. But, by undertaking a cull, it lets the younger, healthier, and very reproductive birds remain in the area, or move into the area which will be new to them; in their search for more / better food; thus; just like killing stray dogs and cats, the ‘problem’ of bird numbers actually increases populations in an area rather than decreasing it.
I am not a pigeon specialist, but I have worked with, and know a man that is. His name is Guy and he is the founder of PICAS, set up in here in Southern England many years ago. I learned a lot about pigeon management from Guy.
I had the pleasure of getting to know (and respect) Guy when we worked together to fight for the pigeons in my (then) local town. His advice and expertise on the subject has always remained with me; just like the pigeon numbers that have remained or increased in the town as the local authority did not take his / our advice on pigeon management and control techniques; which I outline below.
PICAS stands for the Pigeon Control and Advisory Service, and their web site can be found at:
“Pigeons control their own numbers very effectively according to the volume of food available to them. An adult pair of pigeons will usually breed 4-6 times a year but can breed more frequently in optimum conditions, producing 2 young each time. If, however, the food supply reduces and there is only sufficient food available to support the existing flock, adult birds may only breed once or twice a year or possibly not at all. Pigeons will not breed if there is insufficient food to service the needs of their young.
If the food supply increases for any reason (following a cull for example), pigeons will breed continuously until the flock reaches the point where it is fully exploiting the food available to it. In other words, there is a minor population explosion each time a cull takes place.
The end result is an estimated 15% -30% increment in flock size over and above the pre-cull figure.
Commercial values have now overtaken good working practice in the pest control sector with pest control contractors recommending culling at every opportunity; as a direct result of this stance pigeon numbers throughout the UK continue to rise year on year. This is clearly not in the interest of those experiencing problems with pigeons (and other species of wild bird) and it is yet another example of the pest control industry putting profit before client’s needs”.
After a full visit and review of the local town site, Guy, with my own support, decided to present a non lethal approach to controlling and reducing pigeon numbers in the town.
A series of dovecotes (easily constructed – we supplied lists of materials and construction info) and feeding areas (located directly below them) were suggested as a primary means of control. This feeding area would allow people to continue feeding the birds if they wished, (as many do), but by having the cotes; a facility will be provided which will not only provide pigeons with a daytime perch, but also with an overnight roosting and breeding facility where flock size can be controlled by birth control (important). This is achieved by removing eggs say once every day or other day, as laid, from the dovecote and replacing them with dummy eggs. This simple but very effective method of numbers control will dramatically reduce pigeon flock size and is very cheap and simple to maintain. Although the infrastructure required to implement this type of system is straightforward, the overall programme is complex and should not be considered unless it is being provided in conjunction with advice from PiCAS.
To cut to the chase; in the end, after a detailed presentation to the local council to outline our proposal; which included suggested sites around the town; construction materials lists; and cote construction sizes); allegedly due costs, council officials decided to ignore the control advice given and go instead with simply putting up a few ‘warning’ signs around the town asking people not to feed the birds.
This method of sticking up a few signs around the town is about as useful as a chocolate fireman !
Lots of people love to feed (and watch) birds. A few signs mean nothing. People will always feed regardless of signage.
Nothing in the way of costing for the signage and ‘alternatives’ were given as a comparison against our proposal.
Also, in their letter to myself (see above), the council suggested that they had been in touch with other councils and had no proof that the system proposed actually worked. As part of our presentation; we did supply information on several councils that had adopted the PIUCAS method of bird numbers management. The PICAS site now reflects some more recent issues:
As said, I learned a lot knowing Guy and the relationship with PICAS. This was quite a while ago and I have not returned for years now to see the current situation re bird control in the town.
We tried, we failed; but in the end you have to ask yourself who has been the real loser in this issue. I was glad to be part of it regardless; PICAS continues and the council ?; do they all live in a pigeon free zone now, one has to ask ? – I very much doubt.
WAV Comment – Everyone will have their own opinion whether COP26 was a success or more of a failure. It is not for us to tell others; here below we supply a few links which you can review and then, given the info, decide for yourselves.
There are potentially positives; but have we not heard the issue of funding suffering nations from meetings in the past, and which have never been fulfilled ?
One thing is for sure, the world is in a crisis; and until world governments who really can make a difference for those who only suffer as a result of their actions, or inactions, we will continue to remain in crisis. The clock is ticking, and is very near to midnight.
So, please read the info in the attached links and hopefully at least get a better overall picture of both the pros and the cons.
Richard Ratcliffe’s wife, Nazanin, has been used as a pawn now for over 5 years;detained by the Iranian authorities. Richard is now into his 18th day of a hunger strike to highlight this issue even more.
This is really for UK residents only, but it will provide an insight into the ‘scratch my back, I scratch yours’ lobbying / open doors issues which happen in politics.
As we (UK) are all aware of, and by now, totally bored with; a lot in the media / press recently about Members of Parliament (MP) having ‘other’ paid ‘work’ in addition to that of being an MP, for which they are paid a basic salary of £81,932.
We personally would often call it being a lobbyist for an organisation or company; the very recent Owen Patterson MP case showing that he was paid in excess (in addition to his MP salary) of £110k to be a ‘consultee’ for 2 organisations. Very much case of getting money to open the right doors we would say; something which campaign groups do not have the funds to do, or wish to be involved with.
So here and now, I am supplying UK residents with a few links which will help them determine if ‘their’ MP is being paid for work in addition to than being an MP. Most people outside of parliament would think and say that being an MP is a full time job in its own right; let alone having more time to earn extra money for undertaking extra duties; but the data provided in the following may show differently.
Today, 9/11/21, we now have additional info relating to one as provided here:
Here below is the main (They work for you) link which allows you to find your own MP and any financial interests associated with them. I (Mark) have not obtained this info through the back door, through ‘contacts’, lobbyists, or any other secretive routes. It is information which is available to everyone who has computer access and knows where to look.
I know where to look and so I want to share the link with you, without me asking for any financial backhanders to do so; a case of simply passing over info so that you can look at your own MP in a little more detail; view them a little differently (?); and maybe ask them some questions if you wish.
In addition, here below is a link from the BBC which again details additional ‘work’ payments that are being given to some MP’s in addition to their MP salary of £81,932.
No wonder Boris Johnson (Prime Minister) is trying to keep it all quiet and sweep it under the carpet. Personally, I view it that an MP is an MP, full stop; and should have NO other job or paid work interests. Some people would skin their grandmother for a few extra quid; and to some, making money is the ‘god’ that they worship. Fortunately, lots of us ‘normal people’ are not in the same boat; we get by and fight the fights that we feel need actions; without paying for doors to be opened or other favours to get us up the pyramid.
‘Tiger King’ Joe Exotic says he has ‘aggressive cancer’
OKLAHOMA CITY (AP) — The man known as “Tiger King,” who gained fame in a Netflix documentary following his conviction for trying to hire someone to kill an animal rights activist, says he has cancer.
“It is with a sad face that I have to tell you … that my prostate biopsy’s came back with an aggressive cancer,” Joe Exotic, who is being held at a federal prison in Fort Worth, Texas, wrote on a Twitter post Wednesday.
The blond mullet-wearing former Oklahoma zookeeper, whose real name is Joseph Maldonado-Passage, is known for his expletive-laden rants on YouTube and a failed 2018 Oklahoma gubernatorial campaign.
He was prominently featured in the popular documentary “Tiger King: Murder, Mayhem and Madness.”
A three-judge panel for the U.S. Court of Appeals for the 10th Circuit in Denver in July ordered Maldonado-Passage be resentenced to a shorter term, finding that the trial court wrongly treated the two convictions separately in calculating his prison term.
People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals, which was behind many of the protests, said it is thrilled with the concept of a circus without animal acts.
“The exciting announcement sends a powerful message to the entire industry, something that PETA’s been saying for decades: Cruelty doesn’t belong in the circus or in any other form of entertainment,” the organization told the Herald-Tribune.
PETA and other groups maintained for years that the circus mistreated the animals featured in its shows.
I dont think we have any problem with people enjoying themselves at the circus – as long as there is all the fun but without the animal abuse that has happened in the past, and still continues with some.
The Viva! Vegan Podcast and Vegan News Minisode – available every month!
In addition to the Viva! monthly Podcast, we now have a Vegan News Minisode!
Together, they’ve got you covered with the latest vegan news, the best celebrity and thought-leader interviews, expert vegan advice and more than a few laughs as well…
Co-hosted by Helen Wilson and Viva!’s head of comms Faye Lewis, each month they’ll be serving up some cracking in-depth chats with some of the most interesting figures in the vegan movement.
Each Podcast episode features a different individual – breaking down their vegan journey and recounting their highs and lows – followed by a candid chat between Helen and Faye on everything from mushroom-based leather alternatives to terrible cooking blunders.
In our Vegan News Minisode, we deep-dive into the world of vegan news and politics in a quick five-minute round-up of newsworthy events in veganism.
No matter where you are in your vegan journey, there’ll be something for you in the Viva! Vegan Podcast and the Vegan News Minisode.
Check out and listen to the Podcasts via this link:
I am sitting here in England tonight (5/11) listening to all the fireworks being let off where I live. Tomorrow is the weekend, and many areas will celebrate Guy Fawkes night by having big firework and bonfire displays. It is a special event celebrated by the English only for centuries.
Enjoy the videos explaining why November 5th is a very special night for us.
London, November 5th 1605 – the gunpowder plot.
How very true – judging by the ‘lot’ we have supposedly representing us in Parliament today, Guy Fawkes is often toasted as: