Woodpigeon (Columba palumbus) taking a moment on my birdbath, rear garden, Staffordshire, England. September 2017.
I came home from work one afternoon and found this on my driveway. Now, I don’t really know my eggs, except for small, medium and large, so I didn’t know what came out of this one. A quick look online I found a great blog going by the delightful name of the ‘Squirrelbasket’ which gave me the answer. It is a Woodpigeons (Columba palumbus), egg, and previous to this I noticed a pair of Woodpigeons building a nest in a crabapple tree on my front verge. I am a bit worried though, for was it on my driveway because the adult Woodpigeons cleared it out of the nest, or because a crow had got to it? I guess I may never know.
The Woodpigeon is a large bird with grey back plumage, a pinkish breast, and a bold white patch on each side of the neck. Dark band on tail feathers, and white bands on front edge of wings. The juvenile has no white patches on its neck, and is somewhat duller in colour.
It feeds on buds, leaves, berries, and fruit. Comes to bird tables. The nest is made from twigs in a tree or a bush. The female lays 2 eggs in 1 or 2 broods from April to September. It can live for up to 10 years.
Seen all year round. Found in a variety of woodland, also farmland, parks and gardens. The UK’s largest and commonest pigeon, and is widespread throughout.
Photograph of Woodpigeon (Columba palumbus), taken June and July 2015, rear garden, Staffordshire. © Pete Hillman 2015. Camera used Nikon D3200, with Sigma 105mm macro lens.