Sunday, September 30, 2007

Once upon a time...

...an advertisement for Hiram Maxim's patent firearms mufflers showed a trio of well-dressed ladies walking a city street with their bonnets and fur hand muffs and their silenced .22 rifles, obviously on their way to do a bit of pigeon-potting at the park. My, how times have changed. An actual city government panicked into stasis because of a PSH-filled letter worrying about the fate of some feathered rats.

12 comments:

Matt G said...

In Texas, pigeons may be shot all year, with no bag limit, without reason, or even meat harvested. In fact, the meat is identical in texture, flavor, and appearance to mourning dove meat, which people pay good money to shoot here every September. The pigeon's common name is the "feral rock dove", and is closely related to its much, much smaller cousin. But people seem to really wrinkle their noses when I'll mention that I'll put a couple of them into the game bag with my dove when I go hunting. What I find in their craws is exactly what I find in the craws of dove: grain. They eat seeds and grains that they find blowing along open ground. Grass seeds, maize, sunflower, dove weed, etc.

Dove come to cities because of several reasons: parks and open green spaces make great foraging. Few natural predators. But most important: we build buildings, bridges, trestles, and stadia that make superb roosting for them. But you go out to the countryside, and the same birds roost in barns and railroad trestles.

Seems like an ETHICAL treatment would be to pop 'em all, and turn 'em into Matt's Dove Skillet, served over fluffy rice. Then feed it to the homeless, or something.

DBA Dude said...

Bring in some trained falcons, that will sort them out in no time.

Worked over here in Trafalgar Square!

Homer said...

Hmmm....I think matt g is on to something. If pigeons were reclassified as "free ranging urban outdoorsman nutritional supplements" the approach could be taken that Peta's PSH were racist and/or sexist, given that a fair number of UOs are not white or male.

Obviously, Peta wants innocent homeless people to starve, thereby depriving society - the "winners of life's lottery" to borrow a phrase from Dick Gephardt - of the opportunity to contribute to the betterment of society by supplying the less fortunate with adequate nutrition. All we need is to work "For The Children (TM)" into the discussion and I think we may have a new sport: Pigeon Potting for the Homeless. And, it might qualify for extra points as Community Service. Win-win!

I'll go warm up my Blue Streak.....

Who is..... Carteach0? said...

Well fed flying rats are good eating. Out here they live on Corn and other grains, growing fat and tasty.

I too recommend the falconers come in for a few days. Shucks, they could certainly sell tickets to that show!

Kinda wish these were Pratchett pigeons... who would make book on the games and strategically poop to alter outcomes...

Anonymous said...

As a Steelers fan, I had to laugh at the "Trap them, send them to Pittsburgh" choice in the poll.

Rob said...

Having hawks flying around on game day should help quite a bit. But really, why did they even ask? Don't they know the 3S's - Shoot, shovel, shut-up.

Christina said...

I hate pigeons.

I won't say that I'll aim for them when they block my way here in my apartment complex parking area, but I won't go out of my way to avoid them, either.

Feathered rats, indeed.

stingray said...

I've got two rules of thumb for dealing with anything PETA-related
1) If they're fer it, I'm a'gin it, and vice versa.
2) Any members of PETA would do well to stay clear of the arc described by the tip of my boot.

The whole lot of them are cud-chewing domestic terrorists that commit more cruelty to animals out of hand than I can even stomach to think of, and I don't have much use for their diseased silicon-filled saddlebag-lookin' spokestwit either. Shooting the birds seems a fine option from here, but after life in a stadium, I might be a bit leary of eating them.

Anonymous said...

I suppose a BB gun would be more appropriate these days for urban and suburban pigeon removal.

I thought some species of pigeons were brought to the U.S. by a Frenchman who intended that the poor shoot and eat them.

Tam said...

"I thought some species of pigeons were brought to the U.S. by a Frenchman who intended that the poor shoot and eat them."

The poor need to get to work then.

Shooting pigeons, I mean...

Jeff said...

I'm all for the Birds of Prey. Not only would it be a good show but it'd be fun to see how PETA reacts to nature taking its course.

I used to work in the athletics dept at a big football University (0-5 this year! ;-) and the fake owl and wounded bird cries don't do squat. I always wanted to bring in a suppressed .22 and go to town.

comatus said...

Raptors certainly will not satisfy PETA (types). There is an awful row in the North of England and Scotland about various upsets to the eternal natural balance caused by the suppression of some raptors, and the introduction of others. Some folk just understand the true balance of nature (and the correct temperature and CO2 percentage) better than the rest of us.