[CT Birds] How Pigeons Navigate

Carrier Graphics carriergraphics at sbcglobal.net
Thu Apr 26 19:49:08 EDT 2012

In response to this article..........
NYTimes Sci: How Pigeons Navigate by Magnetic - 

The homing ability of Pigeons has been studied extensively, and those
who fly "Homing" pigeons also have their thoughts on this.
The one thing that separates the Pigeons homing instinct from other
birds, including wild Migrants, is this. Through training, Pigeons become
home oriented to their loft through being released at increasing miles each 

Eventually, they become imprinted to the exact direction/ location of their home 
loft. BUT...

What separates them from most other birds, is their homing instinct being 
correct no mater what direction they are released from. Be it NSEW or anything 
in between.
How they accomplish this feat is still a mystery. Many Homing Pigeon races are 
done from distances of 100 to 600 or more miles, and most birds make that 
distance back to the home loft within a day! This multi directional homing, 
especially from any random direction, is to me and many others, a mystery that 
we may never know
the answer to. And i for one am happy to know, this natural ability may forever 
stay a secret. 

Also - in recent years, Homing Pigeon breeder/racers are encountering strange 
happenings with their racing birds. More birds are being lost (not arriving home 
to their lofts) than ever before. Many speculate it might be caused by the 
recent increase of communication air waves, such as the ones sent out by cell 
phones, radio/TV stations, Radar and others. Can the increase in these airwaves 
possibly have an influence in their homing abilities? 

Paul Carrier - Harwinton   

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