Why Do Pigeons Live in Cities?

Pigeons are intelligent birds that move to areas providing sufficient food, safe shelter, and a suitable place for mating.

Why Do Pigeons Live in Cities? Pigeons live in cities because humans have provided ample space, food, and nesting spots to live and reproduce. Moreover, these are domestic birds that interact socially, and cities offer protection from bad weather and predators.

Cities provide ample resources for birds, including pigeons, and have good relationships with humans, forcing them to move toward urban areas.

Where do pigeons come from?

Almost 360 to 400 species of pigeons are present globally that have spread in different regions of the world according to habitat type and requirements.

Most of these birds seen in cities have come from seaside cliffs as these stone buildings are ideal places for making nests.

Moreover, these are not native to America, and humans brought them when they were moving from European regions to America.

After that, native people raised them to get food or as pets leading to an uncontrollable population and increasing to a massive number that you see them flying everywhere.

Furthermore, they were used for sending messages due to their extraordinary homing instinct, making them return home even after reaching hundreds of miles away.

Why are there so many pigeons in cities?

You can find many pigeons in urban areas due to many reasons, as these places provide ample resources and ideal habitats for them to live.

Multiple nesting spots 

Cities have large buildings and stony structures that attract pigeons to build nests and live there.

They were found living in the seaside cliffs years ago that provide covered areas to hide from predator attacks and remain safe and secure from bad climatic conditions.

Many hard surfaces or tall buildings made of stony material and concrete provide suitable nesting spots to build their nests.

Moreover, window ledges and sills, AC units, and roofs are built with unique designs providing ample space for these feather friends to accommodate.

Access to a variety of food 

They have to struggle less to get food than wild birds because humans like to feed them with various food types.

Moreover, they have adapted to eat not only seeds and insects but can digest food leftovers, including rice and buns or even snacks like potato chips.

The urban areas are an endless food source where people have placed bird feeders and baths in their gardens for their feathered friends.

Furthermore, these have adapted to thrive on the food thrown by humans or accidentally fall on the ground.

Unlike wild birds, they can fulfill all their nutritional requirements by consuming the abundant food supply provided by humans.

They prefer to mate when they have enough time as they do not have to roam in different places to get food.

Opportunity for social interaction 

They are social creatures and avail themselves an opportunity of interacting with humans when they find them safe and build trust. They will come to you if you offer them food.

Wild birds have lesser opportunities of interacting with humans as rural people are not interested in feeding and petting them.

Many people have grown them as pets and keep them inside cages providing an ideal shelter and better environment to live and reproduce.

In addition, they are good companions to spend time with but are a bit messy and need care and attention to survive for a long time.

Protection from predators and bad weather 

They have less risk of attack from predators as they locate their nests in the trees that are open spaces and are easier to attack.

However, the presence of nests under the bridges and groves of the buildings can help hide them from larger hungry birds. Moreover, some natural predator birds like hawks are also uncommon in cities.

In the same way, the covered nests are at less risk of destruction due to storms or excessive rain.

They do not have to move to a new location occasionally due to disturbances in their homes after bad weather. They also like to sit on the electric wires without being electrocuted.

Better navigation capabilities 

They have extraordinary skills in navigating with their eyes in the surroundings, and their homing instincts help them come back to their homes.

They can return even after going far, almost 800 to 1000 kilometers away from their nests. Moreover, it helps them find food from farther areas because they cannot be lost.

No prominent cases of car crashes are recorded when pigeons have hit vehicles hard due to their acrobatic nature, as they can fly between buildings and busy roads efficiently.

Availability of vets and treatment 

Cities provide an opportunity for vets and multiple options for treatment that can help survive the injured birds.

A few of these birds die when they have gotten no attention from humans, but most of these injured birds come close to humans for proper treatment.

Moreover, no such facilities are available in the rural areas leading to death as those people do not bother an injured bird and do not take the wild bird to a physician.

The death ratio is not higher in urban pigeons as they are lucky to get adequate treatment and care from the people; that’s why pigeons prefer to live in cities.

What type of pigeons lives in cities?

Most commonly, feral pigeons are found roaming in cities and urban areas as they have adapted to the environment that is warm, densely populated, and contains large buildings.

You cannot find feral pigeons in less developed areas, but wild ones prefer to live in open spaces as they are not used to living in confined cages.

In addition, some of these birds prefer less densely populated rural areas as they provide a lot of space to fly. Wild birds build their nests on trees in a forest that are not found in urban areas.

However, the cities mimic their natural habitat as they like to live in large stony buildings providing enough hiding spots and covered areas for building nests.

What city has the most pigeons?

Almost 300 to 400 million pigeons are present globally that have occupied different regions of the world, providing favorable habitats.

Moreover, New York is the only city with a massive number of these birds, reaching almost 1 million. Their population was increasing continuously and was estimated to exceed a million.

You can consider that around one pigeon is present for one person according to their high density.

They have a tied relationship with urbanization as their number is increasing at the rate humanity or buildings are expanding. They are also following man’s progress and multiplying in number.

A prominent reason behind their large population in cities is their lifespan. They can live for almost 12 to 15 years due to high adaptability and lesser risk of attack from city predators.