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Swimming wood pigeons!

We made a wild life pond last November and have been busy planting up, adding logs around it and stones on the beach area going down into the water. Now I don't want to stop birds from drinking from it but to have 8 to 10 wood pigeons using it as their personal spa - and I'm talking communal here, is a bit much. I swear they are even swimming in the deeper sections. 
They are constantly knocking over plants, seem to soak up water like sponges and leave a dirty, greasy film on the surface. I did have a pond skater for a whole day but it left under the onslaught of feathers. I have enough trouble with the rabbits eating the marginal plants but at least they are not using the pond for their ablutions!
I've tried putting more pebbles and some larger ones on the beach area where they seem to congregate, it's helped up to a point. However they have decided that doing a flying landing in the water is just as good. The bird bath they have always used at the side of the house has been forsaken, it's water is crystal clear.
Any ideas would be appreciated!


  • DovefromaboveDovefromabove Central Norfolk UKPosts: 82,102
    The wood pigeons do the same in this garden ... you build a wildlife pond and the flippin wildlife go and use it ... duh   :/;):D

    It's a temporary thing, while they're brooding the eggs ... they need to keep their feathers/broodpatch moist so the eggs don't dry out ...  the film on the surface of the water is 'powder down' explained here 

    Can you provide them with an alternative deeper birdbath for a few weeks? (an upturned dustbin lid or very large plastic plant saucer, and then lay some chicken wire  in a dome over the beach area of your pond, just for a few weeks until the nesting season is over and they revert to their normal birdbath routine.  

    “I am not lost, for I know where I am. But however, where I am may be lost.” Winnie the Pooh

  • GlennithGlennith Posts: 4
    I think I made the mistake of putting up the sign 'Wildlife This Way!'   :#
    Thank you Dovefromabove for your very informative response, it's set my mind at rest that the 'powder' floating is not harmful to pondlife and I will try the chicken wire dome.
    Our wood pigeons seem to nest at least 7 months of the year, not just a few weeks, perhaps I need to put something in the water....... ;)

  • DovefromaboveDovefromabove Central Norfolk UKPosts: 82,102
    “I am not lost, for I know where I am. But however, where I am may be lost.” Winnie the Pooh

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