Are pigeons clever?

Lizzie27Lizzie27 Bath, SomersetPosts: 3,691
My daughter has a bird feeder suspended under an overhanging 1st floor window (it's a very old house in Devon, with no garden and right on the street. She thinks the local pigeons have worked out that if they fly upwards and knock the birdfeeder sideways, this spills the birdseed onto the road where they can hoover it up. Is this likely (she hasn't seen them do it) or are the smaller birds just dropping the sunflower seeds?

Posts

  • wild edgeswild edges The north west of south east WalesPosts: 3,688
    Pigeons are clumsy so it may be a happy accident but small birds do drop seeds too as it gives them more time on the feeder without other birds driving them off to get a go.
  • DyersEndDyersEnd Posts: 730
    The pigeons round where I live are very stupid. One of them spent several days trying to nest in my monkey puzzle tree. It failed  :/ 
  • josusa47josusa47 Posts: 2,401
    Pigeons are good at solving problems.  In an experiment they were put, one by one, into a cage with food hanging out of reach above them, and elsewhere in the cage, a small plastic box.  Most of them, having tried and failed to reach the food, pushed the box under it and stood on it.
  • Bagpuss57Bagpuss57 South West Posts: 254
    Lizzie27 said:
    My daughter has a bird feeder suspended under an overhanging 1st floor window (it's a very old house in Devon, with no garden and right on the street. She thinks the local pigeons have worked out that if they fly upwards and knock the birdfeeder sideways, this spills the birdseed onto the road where they can hoover it up. Is this likely (she hasn't seen them do it) or are the smaller birds just dropping the sunflower seeds?
    Oh my goodness! You need to know that even though everyone thinks pigeons are stupid creatures that are a bit daft and don't care about walking out into the middle of the traffic they are really NOT as stupid as we think! I have watched them fly at the feeders to knock the seeds to the floor, sit in the nearest branch or bar on the bird feeder and jump onto the feeder making it swing so seed falls, if you outsmart them with a pigeon proof bird feeder then they watch the smaller birds and sit in waiting for seed to drop for them to hoover up. I would suggest a squirrel/pigeon proof feeder which might help a bit, but they are always outsmarting me. They caused a heap of mess and problems under my solar panels making nests and even after two attempts of adding bird spikes and the such they managed to work out a way of bending the spikes to get back under. Hence now I have wire mesh around the whole area and they have had to nest elsewhere, but they still keep trying their best! They are smarter than you think!!! 
  • Dirty HarryDirty Harry Posts: 488
    In my experience the wood pigeons that hang around my garden aren't that bright.

    I got a cage to go over my ground table and one of them walked round it in a circle for a solid few minutes gawking at the sunflower hearts.

    Crows however are the opposite. I've had to cable tie my feeders down to their feeding pole as they'd flip them off the hooks to knock them onto the ground.

    They're big hooks that loop right back on themselves as well so it's a fair effort.
  • Lizzie27Lizzie27 Bath, SomersetPosts: 3,691
    Thanks for all the replies - I guess it's the pigeons then so I'm not sure there's a solution to that problem.
  • SonnieBSonnieB ROMFORD, Essex Posts: 68
    The two wood pigeons that hang around my garden get out witted by the squirrel on a daily basis.  The squirrel has managed to clear my bird feeder in 2 days and they are lucky if they get a few seeds that the squirrel drops for them.  
  • philippa smith2philippa smith2 Posts: 7,594
    I know my Wood Pigeons are certainly not stupid - apart from anything else, they manage to breed successfully.  Unlike humans, producing young against the odds takes a bit of nous and ingenuity :D
Sign In or Register to comment.