fbpx
Wednesday, July 17, 2024

Kiwi homing pigeon returns – 24 years later

A pigeon in New Zealand has returned home – 24 years after it flew off from its nature park home.

The native pigeon named ‘Pidge’ had been hand-reared at a wildlife park in Rotorua since 1991, but was released into the wild in 1996, with staff expecting the friendly pigeon to return home a short time later.

Pidge, who was wearing an identification band on his leg, was not seen again until he arrived back at the park in August this year – some 24 years later.

With life expectancy of the native birds estimated to be less than 25 years, Pidge’s return and mere fact that he’s still alive has made his arrival home a very special occasion for everyone at the Rainbow Springs park.

“To have Pidge up there almost 30, older than some of the keeping staff, was really exciting,” the park’s kiwi hatchery manager, Emma Bean told the NZ Herald.

A pigeon in New Zealand has returned home – 24 years are if flew off from its nature park home.

The native pigeon named ‘Pidge’ was hand-reared at a wildlife park in Rotorua but disappeared in 1996.

Pidge, who was wearing an identification band on his leg, was not seen again until he arrived back at the park in August – some 24 years later.

With life expectancy of the native birds estimated to be less than 25 years, Pidge’s arrival home and mere fact that he’s still alive makes it a very special occasion for everyone at the Rainbow Springs park.

“To have Pidge up there almost 30, older than some of the keeping staff, was really exciting,” the park’s kiwi hatchery manager, Emma Bean told reporters.

“We’re really pleased to be able to provide the extra care and support he needs in his senior years.

“Most ornithological references suggest kererū live for 20 to 25 years, so Pidge is doing really well. He is quite possibly the oldest known kererū alive today – which is something we’re investigating.”

The breed is known for its gluttonous nature, often gorging on berries and known for its rotund shape.

Pidge reportedly was in poor condition when he was found in the grounds of the park in August, with staff lovingly feeding him back to good health in recent weeks.

“He’s starting to show signs that he wants to fly, so we’ll be moving him into the aviary this week,” Ms Bean said.

The breed is known for its gluttonous nature, often gorging on berries, leading to its trademark rotund shape.

Pidge reportedly was in poor condition when he was found in the grounds of the park in August, with staff lovingly feeding him back to good health in recent weeks.

“He’s starting to show signs that he wants to fly, so we’ll be moving him into the aviary this week,” Ms Bean said.

Latest Articles