Posts Tagged ‘Columbidae’

LA Pigeon Show 2015

Wednesday, February 4th, 2015

Last Friday, I got woken up by two separate friends texting me to inform me that there is a large pigeon convention happening on the weekend. So they had heard on the news. Naturally, I moved my dentist appointment and made it happen. I spent three hours looking at hundreds of pigeons and taking pictures. I also learned a few tidbits like the word grizzle, “almond” to describe pigeon color, and how to properly pronounce the word Jacobin (JACK-obin).

A lot of people don’t know that pigeons are bred to compete, much like show dogs (except they just sit there and look pretty). There are so many cool recessive pigeon genes that come out when they’re selectively bred over centuries. The pigeons looked healthy and happy for the most part. There were only a few breeds that I felt bad for; they had some difficulty moving around. These were only a small portion of the birds.

The pictures were hard to narrow down. So many of the pigeons had so much character and posed well for photos. So, I put the rest of the pictures in a Flickr album. Go look!

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If you like these photos, you’ll love the book Extraordinary Pigeons by Stephen-Green Armytage. I like it so much that I have two copies (one I bought myself, one gifted to me by a friend). I keep one at home and one at work!

Happy Pigeon Appreciation Day

Sunday, June 15th, 2014

Pigeon Next to Ashtray

Okay, you got me. Pigeon Appreciation Day was June 13th, two days ago. I celebrated by feeding pigeons at a duck park, the only place where it’s socially acceptable to feed pigeons ’round these parts. My plan was to take beautiful pictures of the pigeons, but the pictures didn’t turn out great. Instead, I’m sharing these (more beautiful) photos I’d taken while I was visiting Istanbul in March.

Expectant Pigeons

My mom and I had come for our usual coffee at the terrace of Bebek Otel, which faces the Bebek Cove within the Bosphorus. It wasn’t too warm outside, so it was just her, me, the pigeons, and a seagull.

Layers of Birds

The pigeons weren’t afraid to come up close and personal. I was delighted when they flew onto our table and shamelessly paced toward our faces as soon as we sat down. So friendly!

Handsome Pigeon Pose

This white splotchy guy was my absolute favorite.
Blobby Pigeon

How did you celebrate Pigeon Appreciation Day? If by some strange reason you missed it, you should add it to your calendar for next year. Shame on you.

This Seemingly Beautiful Photo of a Dove Will Horrify You Once You Notice This Tiny Detail

Tuesday, June 10th, 2014

Look at this photo. Isn’t it pretty? I captured this shot of a dove’s nest on a windowsill just below my grandma’s window when I was in Istanbul. I was pretty proud of myself, as this was the first time I’d visited Turkey since upgrading my camera last year, and I was trying to be artsy. I smugly grinned to myself as I admired the image composition and how sharply I’d captured the dove’s features.

AND THEN… something weird caught my eye.

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10 Pictures of Tuscan Pigeons

Sunday, June 23rd, 2013

Two weeks ago I was in Tuscany. Whereas most people would put up touristy pictures from their travels, I preferred to write a pigeon-centric post instead. Before we proceed, I’d like to point out that I did not intend to have a round number of pictures; I picked the better ones out of a group of thirteen, and the resulting number happened to be ten.


Florence rooftops – can you spot the lovely pigeony couple? Let me help… (close-up below)

Pigeon pair enjoying a sunny day in Florence.

A pair of helpless squabs, tucked away in a nook in a stone wall, fearfully looked at me as I walked past them on my way to the top of a tower in Lucca. They fidgeted nervously as I snapped a few pictures.

Pigeons relaxing at the dome of a very tall tower in San Gimignano…. far away from those pesky humans.

Old Italian buildings were very pigeon-friendly, as they had multitudes of nooks in their stone walls, a byproduct of the scaffolding used during construction. Some of the nooks have since been filled in or netted, but the available ones are prime pigeon property.

Gatekeeper pigeon guarding her eggs and the arched gate into the city.

Pigeons with a prime view of the Tuscan countryside.

Proud parent eyeing the photographer suspiciously (same pigeon in the picture above, resting in the hole in the top left).

Puffed up pigeon resting at the edge of a fountain in Siena town square on a rainy day.

For more Tuscany pictures, visit my Tuscany photo set on Flickr.

January 1st

Wednesday, January 2nd, 2013

Each year on January 1st, I walk over to the bookstore and pick out a daily planner at 50% off. It’s become an unintentional tradition for me. Above is shown this year’s planner, which I will use mainly at work, and other acquisitions. Yes, you betcha I bought those dove cards at half price!

On a slightly related note, I don’t make new years’ resolutions. Whenever I resolve to do something, I just do it. You should, too!

Feedings at great uncle’s balcony

Sunday, October 31st, 2010

Here are some pictures to supplement a previous post where I talk about feeding doves in my great uncle’s balcony. Unfortunately, I’d forgotten to take my camera’s data transfer cable with me on vacation, so I took these pictures with my phone instead.

Pigeon gulps down seeds as its less courageous friends watch enviously.


A mourning dove sheepishly partakes of a seed under the watchful eye of the alpha pigeon.

Spotted Dove Spotted!

Monday, July 5th, 2010

When I go to different cities, one thing that captures my attention is the difference in variety of local urban birds. For instance, the starlings in Arizona were huge compared to the ones I’m used to seeing in Southern California. The mourning doves in Istanbul are more of a reddish color than the ones here, and coo differently. I can’t help but feel like Charles Darwin, observing the difference in beak shapes of the finches in the Galapagos Islands, each type formed through years of evolution in isolation on an island. Usually, it’s the rock pigeons (the run-of-your-mill gray pigeons we see in almost every city) that seem to look the same everywhere.

Hong Kong had a disturbing lack of regular pigeons in the city, but I did notice many doves. They looked like standard mourning doves I’m used to seeing…

…except, these ones had silvery looking heads and dark necks laced with white spots! Yes, I was looking at a spotted dove, or Streptopelia chinensis.

Like all doves I’ve seen, they’re so impatient to walk around in circles frantically, making it difficult for me to photograph them well.

Victoria Crowned Pigeon sighting

Monday, June 28th, 2010

I was in Hong Kong last week. More on that later. Unexpectedly, one of the highlights of my trip was visiting the aviary in Kowloon Park. I finally saw a Victoria Crowned Pigeon in person.

I’d wanted to see a Victoria crowned pigeon ever since I saw a picture of one in an encyclopedia back when I was nine or ten years old. I was doing “research” for a two-page comic about a mourning dove teaching a classroom full of young mourning doves about pigeon and dove ancestry and the many kinds of doves that exist today. You can see that my unusual fascination with doves began at an early age. The comic is more pedagogical than entertaining, but what can I say…. I was a nerd.

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Sadly, I couldn’t get a good picture of the creature in the aviary. The photo above is taken from Extraordinary Pigeons by Stephen Green-Armytage.

Pigeon trinkets

Sunday, May 30th, 2010

I commissioned Laura, one of my friends from MIT, to paint me some pigeons so that I can expand my ever-growing pigeon collection. Yay! Here’s what it looked like before she send it out, and here is what it looks like now:

Speaking of which, here is another recent addition to my collection:

Don’t ask me how my fascination with pigeons started, because it’s been too long for me to remember.

Final Resurrection

Wednesday, September 9th, 2009

Dear readers, I have finally sorted out my internet, hosting, domain name, creative muse, etc. issues and am back. I’m in the process of migrating everything from my old site (formerly known as “Queenoflub”) to this domain. I know I’ve posted a few similar things before, but this time it is for real!

So, I finally have a place where I can put up my drawings again! Below is all the “art” I’ve done so far this year:

Oh, and I’m planning on writing here more often than thrice a year. It is time to pick up where I left off and get back into the groove of things!