Say what you will about pigeons, their determination is admirable. I thought the pigeons and the smaller birds who visit my feeder had reached an agreement. But I was wrong.
For the better part of a year I did not see one single pigeon at my feeder while numerous sparrows, finches and chickadees enjoyed having a snack. Then, out of nowhere, much like having a group home for delinquent teens open next door, the pigeons were everywhere. Not happy to scare off the little guys and eat all the seeds, these troublesome birds set about breaking the feeder. They stood on it and reduced it to splinters.
I did a little research online and purchased a hanging tube feeder that is designed for small birds. After removing the pieces of the original feeder, I installed the new one outside my window. Within minutes the pigeons were back examining the possibilities of getting their beaks on the seeds. Finally one of them walked over and, bold as brass, stretched his oil-slicked neck far enough to reach the lowest seed hole. Bastard. No big deal I thought, I will just put duct tape over that one hole. Well, you would think he read my mind because before I knew it he had hopped up and taken a position on one of the perches. Given his size, he could not get at the seed hole immediately in front of the perch, but once again stretching his neck was able to gobble seeds from a higher opening. Bastard.
Undaunted I did even more research and made my way to the local hardware store to purchase a roll of chicken wire. I concocted a mesh bubble with the wire and placed it over the feeder. It was very windy here last night so this morning I was pleased to see that the feeder was still in place within its protective sheath and not lodged in a windshield below.
During the night the wet surface of my windowsill froze, making it much like a skating rink. Before long the pigeons were back, but at least this time I had a chuckle as they landed on the ice only to slide off again. Once they caught on to the problem of the icy surface, they returned and made their way to the now enclosed feeder. Sure enough one of them strolled over and tried to access the seeds but was met with a beak full of wire. He looked at me through the window and I believe he said ‘bastard’.
But like Navy Seals pouring out of rafts and scaling the side of a ship, the pigeons used the chicken wire to climb up the feeder and fill themselves with seed intended for smaller birds. I have no idea how to handle this. Maybe I need pigeon wire. Bastards.