Animals, Birds, Pigeons and doves

Scientific name: Columba palumbus

Our largest and most common pigeon, the woodpigeon is a familiar bird of gardens, parks, woodlands and farmlands right across the country. Its husky ‘hoo-hroo’ call is a well-known sound of the country. Woodpigeons feed on seeds, leaves, grains, fruit, peas and root crops and can become a serious agricultural pest in certain areas. Woodpigeons makes flimsy twig nests in trees, in which the female lays two eggs. Both sexes incubate and raise the young, feeding them on ‘pigeon milk’ – a regurgitated, milky substance from a food-storage organ called a ‘crop’.

England, Wales, Scotland and Ireland
Specific name:
Columba palumbus
Length: 40-42cm
Widespread across the UK

How to identify the Woodpigeon?

Our largest pigeon. Easily distinguished from the similar stock dove and feral pigeon by its pink breast, white neck patch and the white patches visible on its wings during flight.

How can I help?

Woodpigeons can be a serious agricultural pest but mostly will live side-by-side with humans without cause for concern.