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    Shot this bird tonight whilst roosting, can't have been off the nest more than a month or so surely?

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    I’ve had one or two like it over the last month, just shows the resourcefulness of our quarry, hope you bagged a few in these high winds!

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     Had loads like that since Christmas. About 20% of what I've shot.  But thy do eat nice!

    Edited by dead eye alan

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    3 minutes ago, dead eye alan said:

     Had loads like that since Christmas. About 20% of what I've shot.  But thy do eat nice!

    They do indeed ‘eat nice’. I never give away or sell many very young birds preferring instead to pluck and gut and roast them.

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    Yes I totally agree, fine food roasted whole. This bird was very small, the bulging crop of rape leaves was bigger than the actual breasts!

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    On 09/02/2019 at 19:38, aga man said:

    Shot this bird tonight whilst roosting, can't have been off the nest more than a month or so surely?

    20190209_161649.jpg

    I got one yesterday identical to your one in the photo , to tell you the truth I didn't think it was that young as the beak looked the same as an old one .

    We used to get a lot of these small dark ones around Christmas time and we put them down as foreigners , maybe they were foreign to us even if they had came from up North and were late Summer / Autumn fledglings :lol: 

     

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    I wonder if they are very late fledglings who struggle to find food through the winter and end up stunted like piglets who cant get on a teet, I had one last week, good feathering, solid little body and like you say Marsh man a strong fully formed beak but very little in white plumage ,and only about two thirds grown, when I dropped it I thought I had hit a dove but once I picked it I was relieved to see it was definitely a woody.

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    Wood pigeons often manage 5 broods throughout the year. we have shot these youngsters in January.

    They are an opportunist species and will make the best of whatever food they can find.

    The last knock back they had were the really dab winters of days gone by!

    Edited by TIGHTCHOKE
    Syntax

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    Here you go aga man , look like my one came off the same nest:lol:

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    On 10/02/2019 at 08:43, aga man said:

    Yes I totally agree, fine food roasted whole. This bird was very small, the bulging crop of rape leaves was bigger than the actual breasts!

     

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    Wow yes almost identical marsh man. You have got me thinking about migrant birds too now, the plumage certainly seems to have a different shade to it. Clear to see those feathers around the head /neck are a young bird though.

    9 hours ago, TIGHTCHOKE said:

    Wood pigeons often manage 5 broods throughout the year. we have shot these youngsters in January.

    They are an opportunist species and will make the best of whatever food they can find.

    The last knock back they had were the really dab winters of days gone by!

    Yes totally agree TIGHTCHOKE, although these numerous broods per year seem to have only come about in recent years, certainly round this part of Yorkshire. I can't really recall shooting youngster in the roost woods during February 20 years ago.

    It can only result in bigger pigeon numbers, which is great for the pigeon shooter!

    Edited by aga man

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    What is also strange is some of the pigeons you shoot roost shooting don't contain a great deal of food in the crops at that late in the day.

    When we had a lot of those dark small ones came down here in the mid Winter there crops would nearly bust open when roost shooting with mainly Kale that they grew for cattle grub , now they can eat everything under the sun with all the different game and cover crops grown , late berries and of course rape if they really need to.

    You could also tell what they had been eating by smelling the bird and the Green tinge on the breast feathers , if there was snow on the ground you could more or less guarantee they had been eating Sprouts or Kale in the pre rape days .

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    To find the approximate age of a pigeon count the ring scales on its left middle toe, then divide by 4, this should give you its age in years.

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