Providing for pigeons

In London pigeons are regarded as a nuisance, as pests. A previous Lord Mayor of the city once described them as “flying rats”. Now, feeding them is frowned upon. Gone are the days when you could buy corn to feed the pigeons in Trafalgar Square.

During our long journey through Gujarat in western India, we saw many places dedicated to feeding pigeons. In Bhavnagar, for example, I saw a man scattering seeds, which were being avidly consumed by a large crowd of grey pigeons. The grain was strewn over a large area in which there were several large bowls of water to quench the birds’ thirst.

In Ahmedabad, we saw a fenced off area supplied with drinking bowls as already described. This special feeding area was well supplied with grain scattered on the ground. In that same city, we saw a huge pigeon ‘hostel’. This consisted of a matrix of niches or pigeon holes in which the creatures resided. Feeding facilities were adjacent to the niches. This giant pigeon coop was next to a mosque or dargah close to the Nehru Bridge over the River Sabarmati.

In Rajkot, we spotted a cylindrical concrete pigeon coop mounted on a tall concrete pillar. And, in Porbandar a large area close to the beach is used to feed pigeons and other birds at the end of an afternoon.

During our very recent visit to the metropolis of Hyderabad in Telengana State, we have driven past pigeon feeding areas. On one of the bridges crossing the river, one of these feeding places occupied the whole length of one side of the bridge.

When wandering around the many bookshops in the Koti district of Hyderabad, we found a square surrounded by buildings. The centre of the square is a fenced open space where thousands of pigeons collect to feed on the copious amounts of grain on the floor. This area is overlooked by a cylindrical pigeon coop, which is illustrated above. The area is maintained by The Pigeon Welfare Association of Telengana.

The Lalbagh Gardens in Bangalore have at least one fine large cylindrical pigeon coop. I do not know how many other places in India care for pigeons as I the places I have mentioned, but from what I have seen so far, I can say that India is not devoid of popular concern for avian wellbeing.

Some views of Diu

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The island of DIU is on the south coast of the Saurashtra peninsular in the Indian state of Gujarat.

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Diu was a Portuguese colony from the 15th century until 1961, when it was ‘liberated’ by Indian armed forces.

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The island is rich in arrchitecture dating back to the golden age of Portugal

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We could only find one newspaper seller in Diu. He opened for a few hours of the day only. Diu is a sleepy place.

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The extensive fort of Diu was built by the Portuguese. Part of it is now used as a local jail.

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Many fishing vessels moor alongside the city of Diu.

 

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Bird-spotters can enjoy standing by the wateride, looking for various different species.

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A long road bridge connects Diu Island to Ghoghla onĀ  the mainland. Beyong Goghla, there is a frontier post between the Union Territory of Diu and the State of Gujarat. The Gujarati policemen are on the look-out for alcohol being smuggled into thier teetotal state from Diu, where ‘booze’ is permitted.

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You can learn more about DIU in “TRAVELS THROUGH GUJARAT, DAMAN, AND DIU” by Adam Yamey.

It is available from lulu.com, bookdepository.com, amazon, and on Kindle

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