Bird bath or shower…?

When we had rain last week and whilst I was cleaning the family’s muddy footprints off the kitchen floor I happened to glance out of the window.

There, in the middle of a puddle of water, stood a Cape Rock Pigeon. I say stood, but it was actually squatting in the puddle. As I watched it, it suddenly raised one wing and held it aloft for approximately 30 – 60 seconds.

I was dumbfounded – wondering what the pigeon was doing. Had it hurt is wing?

As I continued to gaze at it Lo! and Behold! it raised the other wing.

The pigeon continued to lift alternate wings for about 10 minutes until the it proceeded to finally have a bird bath in the puddle with much splashing and flapping of wings.

Finally finished, it walked out of the puddle and preened itself before flying off to the nearest tree.

The question remains – is this a modern pigeon who prefers to take a shower to a bath – or has the pigeon been watching too many humans taking a shower au naturel?

Dani

http://ecofootprintsa.blogspot.com

5 Responses to Bird bath or shower…?

  1. Peggy October 4, 2010 at 11:19 am #

    They hold their wings up to let the sunshine in, thus killing the noonoos hiding in the dark places among the soft feathers.

  2. Dani October 4, 2010 at 1:06 pm #

    Sorry – I omitted to say that it was still raining when the pigeon was having it’s “shower” – maybe it needed to clean up before applying the next dose of deodorant 🙂

  3. Patrick October 4, 2010 at 2:31 pm #

    hey dani. great story and pictures. whenever it rains (well, the day after), the sparrows splash around in our blocked gutter, with what I can only assume is glee. I guess everyone, including birds, likes a bath!

  4. Niall October 5, 2010 at 9:36 am #

    hey dani. this is interesting behaviour as most birds fluff up their feathers and try to stay dry and warm when it rains!

  5. emme October 5, 2010 at 4:05 pm #

    i’ve often seen doves spreading their wings out like this when we put the sprinkler on the lawn. also, my mother told me they’ll do the same in dry weather while sitting over, or close to, an ant hill. apparently the bites from the ants contain a toxin that causes the nits or lice living on the bird to adandon their home in the feathers. it’s a good story.

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