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How on earth do pigeon nests work?

What we can learn about being grateful and making do with what we have from the simple life of pigeons

SHARE How on earth do pigeon nests work?
Pigeon walks on beach

A pigeon struts across South Beach in Miami, Florida.

Sarah Gambles

Could there be a living being that couldn’t care less better than pigeons? You can find them in almost any country in the world, and unlike most wildlife –– they enjoy concrete.

“They actually really like concrete, marble and stone, so they prefer to live and build nests not in the trees and shrubs and grass, but alongside buildings,” Colin Jerolmack, a scientist at New York University, told The Washington Post.

Pigeons and doves are classified as doves, so they are essentially the same thing, according to Jerolmack, who wrote a book about pigeons called “The Global Pigeon.”

How on earth do pigeon nests work?

While most birds take great care to build fortified nests for their young, pigeons prefer more shack-like living for their families, with little grass and a lot of concrete.

Pigeons are brilliant trash collectors who make do with what they have, and we should all respect that.

Why are there pigeons everywhere?

The thing is, pigeons aren’t stupid. They have highly developed navigating instincts, that people discovered, would be helpful to carry written messages over long distances, hence the term “carrier pigeons,” per The Washington Post.

“You can take a street pigeon in D.C. and drive it down to North Carolina and release it, and, more often than not, it’ll find its way home,” Jerolmack told The Washington Post.

The birds are native to North Africa, the Middle East and Europe, but the birds can be found in most American cities and many cities around the world.

Biologist Elizabeth Carlen told Business Insider that pigeons can survive on human food and scraps and find contentment living in almost any space, making it easy for them to live anywhere.

“As a result, pigeons spend a lot less time searching for food and a lot more time breeding, which they can actually do without trees,” Carlen said.

Maybe instead of decrying pigeons for being what many call “bird rats,” we could all learn a lesson about gratitude, resourcefulness and contentment from the simple and intuitive birds we call pigeons.

I would also recommend checking out Bad Pigeon Nests on Twitter if you want to see some wild pigeon nests.