Most lost birds are hungry and thirsty. Water is necessary before all else. Since pigeons drink by suction, any water container should be at least 2.5 cm deep. The container should be heavy enough not to be knocked over. A half preserving jar is most suitable for this purpose although a dish, an old margarine tub, etc. can be used. A bird which has gone without water for a while is sometimes a bit less than itself. It may be so exhausted, it doesn't even realise that water is in front of it, especially if the water container you use is different from what it is familiar with. A trick is to trickle a few drops of water from on high into the container to make a splashing sound. When they hear that, most birds will invariably head to drink.


Pigeons are grain eaters. While park pigeons will eat bread, most domestic birds have been raised on a multi-grain mixture and have never seen a slice of it. In fact, they would likely ignore it as possible food. Instead of bread, you might try feeding them something else from around the house. Popcorn (maize), rice, split peas, barley, cage bird seed, etc., are all good first options to feed a lost bird with. If you have some soup mix available, this is a good substitute as this contains most of the grains that pigeons generally eat. THESE GRAINS SHOULD NOT BE COOKED OR POPPED BUT FED RAW. Water should also be provided since pigeons normally drink immediately after eating.

What should I keep it in?

Any container that a dog or cat can't get into will be fine. An old bird cage will hold the pigeon for a day or so with no problem, as will a cardboard box. A screen on top of such a box is better than simply closing the flaps since there will then be enough light for the bird to see to eat and drink plus provide plenty of ventilation. Once caught, the usually tired and hungry pigeon should be kept in a secure place away from cats etc.

Finding the bird's owner

Please report lost pigeons by sending us the details noted here. When reporting the found pigeon it is important to give all the details from the life ring of the bird. There will be a Club Code, Year, and Number, these are all needed to enable the owner to be traced and contacted. NEVER try to attach a note to the owner by rubber banding it to the bird's leg. This cuts off the leg's blood circulation and often leads to gangrene and amputation of the limb.


REPORT LOST PIGEONS BY SENDING AN EMAIL TO This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.


Please include the following in your email:


  • Your Name
  • Your Phone Number
  • Your Street Address including Town/City
  • Pigeon Ring Details (see above - please advise Club Code, Year and Number on ring)
  • Details of condition of bird


Non-homing pigeons

There are more than 200 breeds of pigeon. Some fly very well, some don't. Those which carry a life ring can usually be tracked to the owner.