I have a standard grey pigeon that I rescued as a squab off the streets, and now I am starting free-flight training with him. I’m very worried that one day he will fly too far, and get lost. How will I, or anyone, recognize him in Italy, a country with a reputation for having a pigeon-pestilence? I had the idea to dye his tail feathers, but any research I did about bird-friendly dye was a dead end. It was always about un-ethical chick dyeing, or bird friendly dye for toys.

Another problem is the fact that my pigeon has very, very dark feathers, and I don't know if the dye will actually do anything.

Suggestions? (sorry for my English, it's not my mother tongue)

  • Do you want to change the color of the feathers, or would also some additonal color on top would fit as solution? Feb 7, 2022 at 12:51
  • 3
    Why not have a tag on its ankle, maybe with an RFID tag? Dyed pigeon might attract predators (hawks do hunt pigeons, I don't know if you have hawks in Italy). It might also attract hunters. I will never understand the hunter psychology but those people like to bring down "weird" things and uniquely coloured pigeon would make a good trophy for them.
    – ck1987pd
    Feb 7, 2022 at 16:13
  • @C.Koca We do have many species of hawks, falcons and other predators, so i too think it's not a good idea
    – Yeeter
    Feb 11, 2022 at 8:44
  • Second the tag on the ankle. A vet might be able to "ring" the bird for you. Otherwise, letting it eat beetroot might show the effects of a dye.
    – Pam
    Mar 13, 2022 at 18:30


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