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16 October 2014

Arnish Lighthouse

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Pigeons relocated from St Kilda

About 9 pigeons were rescued from St Kilda by the National Trust for Scotland, who own the archipelago, 45 miles west of North Uist. The homing pigeons, some of them from as far away as France, had been blown off course by bad weather over the southern UK. They were rescued and taken to Harris, 45 miles to the northeast. Had they stayed on St Kilda, the birds would have died of starvation. One of them had already been taken by a skua.
Posted on Arnish Lighthouse at 13:03


Good grief! How much did it cost to save nine flying rats! It's a shame the NTS doesn't look after it's rangers on St Kilda so well...

Sunny from Arran

Is there no news on what happened to the poor pigeons once they got to Harris? relocation package? help to settle in? local language classes? culture evening classes? help to get housing, jobs, and of course support for all the emotional distress.... we have a stray homing pigeon which has been shi**in on our window sills for 2 months - COME AND GET IT PLEASE BEFORE I STRANGLE IT AND MAKE PIGEON PIE. where's that skua(bonxie) when you need it?

scallowawife from shetland

Methinks the homing pigeons had to find their own way around; as far as the shi**in pigeon on your window sill is concerned, I'd find someone that keeps homing pigeons in your area and let him/her have a look. He can arrange for the bird to be returned to its owner.

Arnish Lighthouse from Stornoway

Is it true that the Mayor of London is thinking of sending Trafalgar Sq. pigeons to St. Kilda? If not, why not? Scallowawife: I hear magnolia paint repels pigeons, at least in Fetlar/ Muness. Of course, Scallo. could implant a gps gizmo into the (window) pigeon and guide the genetically defective animal home (and you could program home to be anywhere you care to target).

mjc from NM,USA

Scallowawife, I'm sure if you ring social services they will rehouse the shi**in pigeon and send it on a computing course so it can join the blogging.

Sunny from Arran

Hello Arnish and Scallowawife: no homing pigeon fancier worth his salt is going to want one of his birds returned to him/her in a cage unless there are good excuses for its failing to return home. If the pigeon can't find its way home, then it is sayonara, arrivederci, good riddance, not auf wiedersehen ... # How about pigeon pie served on a bed of fresh rhubarb? Of course, there is always that famous native Shetland (Scalloway) dish: Pigeon tikki marsala (perhaps Sue Lawrence has a recipe?).

mjc from NM,USA

Many years ago in bad weather, racing pigeons hitched lifts onboard ships in the Channel and Biscay. The ring numbers were reported via uk telephone number, to the Pigeon Racing Club. I trust that the NTS has been in contact with the PRC and that via the PRC, the owners of the pigeons have been found. Racing pigeons are valued birds and cannot be compared with the feral pigeons that exist precariously in city centres. Post script. On one occasion outward bound, a pigeon stayed with us all the way to the americas, last sighted in Boston, Massachusetts. (N.E. US ofA)

Colin B. M. Scott from Stornoway

Was pigeon tikki a staple of the Kon Tikka Expedition?

Flying Cat from mid Atlantic on a straw raft

Howdy Colin: judging by their numbers, I suspect feral pigeons are not living precariously (unless there are trainers of Pointing Dogs around who are too cheap to buy quail and partridges for their set up). As to the pigeon who sailed with you to Boston, hope the Border Partrol/ Immidgration Services/ Homeland Security caught it before it taxes US veterinary services (a joke, a joke, my pigeon cote for a joke!!). Colin, a homing pigeon which can't find its way home is not worth a gram much less an ounce of corn. # Right, Flying Cat, point taken. My daughter (home for the holidays) corrected me recently when I mentioned tikki marsala as UK national dish: "tikka" I was told. She did not think I was funny when I rejoined that "tikka" marsala was the national dish of Polynesia, not the UK. To think I am bankrupting myself sending her to get an "edoocatiun" at a college in the city of dreaming (dreamy?) spires !! Enough to make one weep over a Scotch Bonnet spiced vindaloo.

mjc from NM,USA

Is Scotch Bonnet the Scottish version of Dutch Cap? I think we should be told............

Flying Cat from a local pharmacy

Capsicum annuum Scotch Bonnet. If you thought Thai Hot and Cayenne have "heat" (are "hot"), try Scotch Bonnet and Habanero. # Tsk, tsk Flying Cat: I did not think that after your operation (snip! snip!!), you would be worrying about Dutch Caps. Oh well, eh, perhaps short term memory loss is being compensated by la recherche du temps perdu.# Seriously, I would not try Habanero or Dutch Bonnet unless you are a born and bred masochist (like some of us). Hungarian Wax is probably more up your alley (or is it "close"), up to the tolerance level of N. Islanders. (yes, yes: capsicum. No double-entendre, here).

mjc from NM

Oh cruel cruel mjc to refer to that which was lost never to return. I have noticed that babybipeds seldom laugh at parental witticisms and often follow same with "Just remember, I will be choosing your Retirement Home." They also suffer from short term memory loss, having been supported at various dreamy redbricks, metropolitan towers etc in the pursuit of learning. And female bipeds. And sushi.

Flying Cat from legs firmly crossed in the Sunroom of Eternity

and hot buns. (Goodness gracious: did I really write that?). # Oh, about the lugubrious repartee: "Just remember, I will be choosing your retirement home!" - the sad part is that often the move is pushed through before Mutter und Vater are really in need of such, but the children can't wait to cash in on the the accrued value of the little house on the prairie. ## Back to our pigeons: why can't Orkney women kick a football as well as the Shetlanders?! Are the bannocks that the Shetlanders eat more nutritious?

mjc from NM,USA

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