Cat Sounding Like A Bird? All You Need to Know

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Most individuals will observe doves and pigeons on a daily basis, regardless of whether they live in the city or in the countryside. Have you ever wondered what their lifespan is?

With proper care, a feral pigeon may live more than twenty years in captivity; the oldest birds have lived for nearly thirty years. On the other hand, wild birds only live an average of two to three years, and a maximum of roughly six years.

The longevity of a Pigeon is ultimately influenced by a variety of circumstances, including as illnesses, predators, and the availability of food, water, and shelter.

The longevity of pigeons is still mostly unknown. Join us as we explore the factors that influence their longevity and the steps that may be taken to give captive birds the greatest opportunity at a long and healthy life.

Most people encounter doves and pigeons every day, whether they live in the city or in the country.

Factors Affecting the Longevity of Pigeons

Many things contribute to a long lifetime, one of which is plain old good fortune. Learn more about the main variables affecting pigeon lifespan by reading on.

Biological Hunters

The range of possible predators for pigeons varies according on the species and area. Although feral pigeons in urban areas must be cautious around possible predators such as Peregrine Falcons and domestic cats, wild pigeons likely confront a wider variety of threats.

Predators of pigeons often include:

Mammals that are carnivores, such as mustelids, foxes, and cats
predatory birds, including goshawks, falcons, and other accipiters
reptiles such as alligators and pythons
Fish, including the colossal Wels Catfish, have been seen to pursue and consume Pigeons.

Pigeons are consumed by predators at every stage of their life cycle, including as eggs, young, and adults. Fast predators may capture even the healthiest adult Pigeons, but the birds that are most vulnerable are those that are elderly, wounded, or ill.

Human-Human Communication

The majority of pigeon species choose untainted wild environments that have not been altered by human activity; some have even become extinct as a result of habitat loss, the introduction of predators, and excessive human hunting.

Nonetheless, it is evident that the Rock Dove (Columba livia) has profited from urbanisation and has successfully colonised metropolitan areas all over the globe. Not only have we brought them to the main cities of every continent, but our skyscraper structures mimic their actual habitat for roosting and breeding.

By profiting from plentiful food supplies like grain and animal feed, farming helps a variety of adaptive pigeon and dove species. Urban pigeons benefit greatly from our uneaten food leftovers as well.

You would expect that an ordinary Pigeon would live to be a great old age given the abundance of food sources and nesting places accessible to them. But the birds compete fiercely with one another, and threats such as pest control, trains, vehicles, and pollution all have an impact.

Urban growth has undoubtedly helped The Rock Dove, which has successfully settled in cities all over the globe.

Illnesses and Medical Concerns

The lifespan of pigeons may be shortened by a variety of illnesses and parasites. Both domestic and feral pigeons often report the following conditions:

Invasion of mites

Pigeons and their offspring are impacted by many parasitic mites, including the poultry red mite (Dermanyssus gallinae), also known as the red mite.


Paramyxovirus, or PMV for short, is a common viral illness in pigeons that may spread quickly across loft spaces. This infection may result in death in a matter of days and causes neck twisting.


This common infection, also referred to as salmonella, is brought on by the Salmonella enterica bacteria. Although immunisation in pigeon lofts is often used to reduce this virus, it may still be fatal. Pigeon paratyphoid fever may still exist, however vaccinations can lessen the severity of the illness’s symptoms.


A very common disease called pigeon canker is brought on by tiny Trichomonas protozoan parasites. This infection results in lesions that spread to the pharynx, oesophagus, mouth, and crop, eventually leading to asphyxia or starvation.


A bad diet can shorten a pigeon’s life, especially if the bird is kept in captivity and is unable to control their own nutrition and find different foods. A poor diet can deprive the bird of vital nutrients, making it more susceptible to infections. Either way, eating too much or too little food results in obesity or starvation.

A bird cannot live a long, healthy life unless it meets every need listed below for its diet:

Fats & Carbohydrates
Minerals and vitamins

Pigeons can have shortened lifespans due to a variety of illnesses and parasites.

Comparing the Lifespans of Other Birds and Pigeons

Even though it varies widely among species, birds can live surprisingly long lives. While some small songbirds have maximum recorded lifespans of only three years, large seabirds such as albatrosses and large psittacines (Parrot family) can reach extraordinary ages of up to 80 years.

The lifespan of pigeons is comparable to that of most small and medium-sized birds. While they do not live nearly as long as the average Gull, they do tend to live longer than comparable sized gamebirds such as Quails and Bobwhites.

Lifespan of Wild and Pet Pigeons

While captive pigeons can live ten to fifteen years with proper care, their average lifespan in the wild is only two to three years. Because they have easy access to food, healthcare, and protection from predators, captive birds typically have much longer lifespans than their wild counterparts.

If injured or sick wild birds are unable to feed themselves, they will soon perish. Even though a variety of illnesses can affect captive birds, these conditions are frequently treatable, and the birds have a good chance of recovering if they have easy access to food.

While captive pigeons can live ten to fifteen years with proper care, their average lifespan in the wild is only two to three years.

How to Make Sure Domesticated Pigeons Live a Longer Life

The caretaker is responsible for providing sufficient shelter, a nutritious diet, and hygienic living conditions for the captive pigeons. Although keeping pigeons in captivity is often done for the purpose of pigeon racing, keepers must acknowledge that their birds are susceptible to attacks by common predators such as falcons and hawks.

Let’s look at some easy ways to maintain the health and longevity of your birds.


Make lots of room. Your pigeon’s lifespan will be shortened if it is kept in a small cage. An aviary that is several feet high and wide will give your bird plenty of space to exercise.

Avoid keeping your pigeon in an area that is excessively windy, wet, hot, or cold.

At least once a week, give your pigeon’s enclosure a thorough cleaning in addition to a daily spot clean.


Give your pigeon premium commercial pigeon food, occasionally topped with treats of bird-safe veggies like spinach. For a lot more information on the diet of pigeons, read this comprehensive guide.
To stop rodents and other pests from contaminating their food, keep it sealed, cold, and dry.
Fresh water is always necessary for pigeons to drink and bathe. In order to keep bacteria and fungi under control, change their water twice a day and clean the containers frequently.


You should think about immunising your pigeons against common diseases such as typhoid (Salmonella) and paramyxovirus (PMV).
If there are any signs of illness in your bird, get advice from a veterinarian.
The Oldest Pigeon Ever Found

Although many pigeon keepers report their birds living longer than 15 years, Peace, an English bird, holds the record. In 2013, this amazing 24-year-old racing Pigeon retired, demonstrating the potential age these birds can reach with proper care and a nutritious diet.

Conservation’s Function in Pigeon Lifespan

While protecting natural habitats can help wild pigeon populations and individuals, it has minimal effect on lowering the likelihood of predation and other natural mortality events.

Because feral pigeons are non-native in North America and the majority of their current range, not much is done to conserve them. Pigeons and other wildlife that coexist in our urban settings, however, can undoubtedly benefit from better air quality and a decrease in litter, toxins, and pollutants.


How can I determine a pigeon’s age?

Regretfully, merely glancing at or inspecting an adult Pigeon won’t usually reveal its age. Banding your birds and maintaining meticulous records of each one is the most effective way to determine the age of your captive birds.

Can twenty years pass before a pigeon dies?

In captivity, some pigeons can live for twenty years. But to live this long, they need good nutrition, housing, medical attention, and cleanliness. Such remarkable ages are seldom (if ever) attained by wild pigeons.

Do pigeons in the countryside and those in cities have different lifespans?

Pigeons face similar risks whether they live in a bustling city centre or in the country. Disease, a lack of food, harsh weather, and predators in both environments could end their lives.

I'm Nauman Afridi, the bird enthusiast behind My lifelong passion for birds has led me to create a space where fellow bird lovers can find valuable insights and tips on caring for our feathered friends.Professionally, I'm a brand strategist and digital marketing consultant, bringing a unique perspective to the world of bird care. Whether you're a novice or an experienced bird owner, is designed to be a welcoming community for all.Feel free to explore, and reach out if you have any questions or just want to chat about birds.
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