Why Do Pigeons Abandon Their Eggs?

It is not uncommon to find pigeon eggs in an abandoned nest or watch your pet pigeon not even look at the eggs.

You may think, “Does this pigeon not love its little ones at all?” But birds and animals are much more intelligent than you give them credit for.

While you may think that they are abandoning their eggs, the reason may be a very reasonable one, something unperceivable for humans.   

So, in this post, you will learn why pigeons leave their eggs. And, yes, sometimes, the pigeons are just careless parents.

Pigeons Leave Their Eggs for Several Reasons

It is often hard to tell why pigeons leave their eggs and their nests behind, but the answer isn’t quite as simple as we might have hoped.

Whether predators, dead eggs, or a disturbed nest, many things can happen to the eggs, the parents, or both. 

Unfertilized eggs

The female can lay eggs without a male as well. These eggs are not fertilized. The female pigeon knows it and thus, does not incubate those eggs. If you have a single female pigeon, how can she lay fertile eggs without a male?

Rotten Eggs

Pigeons are intelligent, and they can sense life in their eggs. If they don’t hear a sound, it means there are no babies inside. You can check them if you think the eggs are abandoned.

Healthy eggs have a smooth and shiny surface. If you feel that the egg is rough, the pigeon’s suspicions are right. You can check it in the dark by shining a torch on it. A healthy egg has visible veins.  

Pigeons Are Spooked

If you have ever seen a pigeon’s egg, you must have sensed that either male or female is present full-time with eggs.

In case you approach the nest, the parent flies away and sits at a distance, watching you carefully. In case this happens repeatedly, parent pigeons leave their nests for good and the babies along with it.

If they don’t incubate, there will be no baby to protect and humans couldn’t harm the babies.

So, if you ever see a parent pigeon incubating eggs, make it safe for them, place some seeds, but stay away, or you will spook them.

Related Read: Can pigeons see at night? | Do pigeons have night vision?

Pigeon Got Sick Or Injured

The living being is far more important than the unborn one; this is what birds think. If either parent gets sick or injured, and their present home is not suitable for recovery, they need a safe place.

Also, if a pigeon is about to die, it wants a peaceful home to hide. In this case, it is not possible for a single bird to incubate.

Bad Weather

The only safe haven available to birds is their nest. But it can only protect them up to an extent from bad weather. In case of too cold weather, incubation is not possible sometimes.

Rain or storms are the worst. It can cause damage to eggs, and fully fertilized eggs may die. The parents sense it and leave their eggs.

In the case of pet pigeons, you must cover their nest. Their little family needs some privacy and safety.

Waiting For The Second Egg

You will always find a pair of two eggs in the pigeon’s nest. If you see a single egg in the nest and the pigeon is not incubating, do not worry. The pair is just waiting for the second egg.

They normally lay two eggs at a time. When the second one has arrived, then they start incubating them.

Related Read: How Long To Keep Pigeons In Cage | For New Pet Pigeon Owners

Is Abandoning Eggs A Problem?

At first, no, it is not. But if you find abandoned eggs regularly in your backyard nest where a wild pigeon pair has made their abode, look into the reason.

First, check the health of the eggs. If eggs seem fine, look for safety issues. If your house is situated where there is a lot of traffic, it may be a reason. If the eggs are rotten, you can’t do a thing.

Next, check if your furry pet scares the birds off. The little reasons can cause the pigeons to leave their unborn behind.

For pet pigeons, safety is not an issue. If you have a single pigeon, and it lays eggs, there is nothing to worry about. For the pair, increase safety for their nest.

You can also try changing the pigeon’s partners if they keep doing this even when they are perfectly safe. In the end, it may be that they are careless parents and don’t want babies at all.

This is all you can do. No one can read the mind of a pigeon, sadly. 

Related Read: How To Cope With The Loss Of My Pet Bird

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