What Does It Mean When a Pigeon Bows?

Many people have probably seen pigeons bowing in their surroundings, but a few know the exact reason for such behavior and what forces them to behave like this.

What Does It Mean When a Pigeon Bows? When a pigeon bows, it means it is trying to attract a partner for mating and relates to a courtship display. Moreover, lowering the head helps maintain equilibrium, improves vision, and depicts a desire for petting. Furthermore, they can ask for food by moving their heads forward. 

A bowing pigeon communicates with other fellows and their owners to make them understand its needs, like mating and no chance of acceptance of another bird to get entered to their territory.

What makes pigeons bow their heads?

There can be multiple reasons for making a pigeon bow their heads, as it can be a position to mount on the partner or attack the foreign birds trying to enter its territory.

Aggressive attack

This movement involves lowering heads close to the ground and lifting bodies a little higher than average. It can be a gesture of showing aggression, indicating the possibility of a fight.

These peaceful birds do not interfere with other organisms but would not tolerate any disruption in their activities and try to pounce upon the other bird.

Furthermore, this behavior helps prevent other predators and intruders from ensuring survival in unwanted circumstances.

Courtship display

The bowing position is commonly seen in pigeons at the time of mating when these birds are trying to fascinate and impress the female partner to get permission for mating.

The male pigeon begins to chase the female by lowering their heads continuously as they have to follow this practice many times to impress her.

Moreover, you can also consider it a mounting position that helps males get a balanced position while mating.

So, it is a courtship display that helps express the male’s desire to mate by circling around her and changing their head position.

Maintain equilibrium

The body shape of birds is a bit awkward as it makes it challenging to maintain equilibrium on the ground while mating.

Accordingly, the bowing position can be a way to attain equilibrium according to the force of gravity by moving their heads forward and backward consecutively.

Their legs are not present in the center and are located much on the back end of their bodies. So, the back-and-forth movement of the head is essential to gain stability on the ground surface.

Improve vision

They are known for a deep and broader vision of the objects by looking at an angle of 330 to 340 degrees horizontally and 130 to 135 degrees vertically.

It helps them better see the objects in the daytime and even see a little bit at night. The pigeon can bow and move their heads close to the ground to better visualize the objects.

As humans rely on the movement of eyes to see their surroundings, they can use this head movement that helps them stabilize the surrounding view.

It is difficult for these birds to refocus vision with monocular vision having eyes on the head sides. So, they prefer to move their heads slightly forward and lower to the ground to look closely.

Desire for petting

A bowed pigeon can be expected to be petted by their owners after taking them out of the enclosure and moving hands gently on the body.

These are loving birds that can become good companions that cannot live lonely and become friendly after recognizing the face of their close ones.

They are affectionate and even cuddle with other pigeons in addition to humans. A strong bond forms with humans when they are adequately cared for and given appropriate attention.

Seek food

It can ask for food when moving its heads and attaining a bowing position. However, it usually bends down to get food from your hand or to catch small invertebrates from the ground.

It can follow the same practice while seeing you closer to their nest and misunderstand that you will feed them.

Moreover, they can also demand food by showing this type of movement when feeling hungry, which can communicate with their owners as they depend on them for food.

How do pigeons bow down?

Pigeons follow a series of activities while bowing as you can see changes in their neck feather due to puffing of the chest, which is a trick to capture the attention of females before mating.

In addition to lowering their heads down to the ground, they begin to move in the form of circles around the female bird to make her feel their presence.

This act is followed by tail dragging when they drag their tails while chasing her. Finally, the driving stage occurs after dragging, which involves running to get closer and avoid other males.

Moreover, the female allows the male to mate after continuous chasing and bowing, and the males feed her through regurgitation before mating.

Furthermore, it is followed by the mating process when the male gets a chance to copulate and breed. Finally, the male bird claps their wings to show happiness after gaining attention from his partner.

Do pigeons bow and scrape at the same time?

It is common to see bowing movements, particularly in male pigeons, associated with scraping actions when these birds are scrapping the feathers of their tails on the ground.

These two movements are followed one after another when trying to convince a female partner to mate, as this behavior is considered a courtship display.

Moreover, the females avoid such movements, and this activity only relates to males as they have to struggle enough to get permission from her.

However, the females only lower their heads when they want to be loved and stroked gently with hands by humans.

These can also be keenly searching for food from the ground as this position allows them to look at the soil invertebrates and grains efficiently.

Do pigeons bow to humans? 

You can not only see pigeons bowing to their partners, but they can also move forward toward humans and lower their heads after recognizing their faces.

Probably, they have different demands from humans when they lower their heads as they can be giving honor to their owners and showing joy for their presence closer to the cage.

Moreover, they can also show this movement when demanding food and showing a desire to be handheld to show love and affection.

Furthermore, it looks funny and equally amazing to see these birds changing their head position as it is a mating ritual and helps communicate or express their desires.

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