Rock-dwelling doves that have adapted to an urban environment. Either the pride of a city or its flying rats. Make nice noises, have a funny walk, and shit everywhere. Raise young in secret hidden nests. Can be trained to carry messages in small holders on their legs.

A very tasty bird. Pigeon is served throughout Southern China as a tasty main dish, usually during dinner. Its texture is comparable to chicken, but sweeter, and crunchier. Goes very well with red tea, however, it does not accompany rice well. Rice is best served with a dish with more sauce. Hence, serve it right after the appetizers.

Pigeon is usually grilled or roasted to perfection in an open fire, and served with no sauce or flavoring. It has only the seasoning to add to its flavor, which I am unfortunately not very familiar with. However, I suspect honey is used somewhere, because the skin is very crunchy. Perhaps Jinmyo or sensei may be able to help me out here.

The pigeon, after it is roasted, is cut up and served, sometimes with prawn chips, as it contrasts very nicely with the grilled flavor of the pigeon. The substantial amount of meat on the wings is nice when eaten with the crunchy wing bones of the bird. I like to eat the brain afterwards. It has a pasty flavor, and tastes like caviar. One pigeon usually serves one person, however, when I get hungry I can eat two or three.

In response to DMan's request, I am not familiar with Shanghai street food but this glaze is commonly used for squab and pigeon. It can also work with grilled seitan or tofu. All Hail Lord Seitan! Cough. Ahem. Excuse me. As I was saying:

What You Will Need
1/2 cup of honey
1 tablespoon of dark soy sauce
1 tablespoon of mushroom soy sauce
1 teaspoon of salt
1 teaspoon of white pepper

What Now?
Heat the honey gently, add the other ingredients and whisk together. Remove from the heat. Smear the pigeon thoroughly with the glaze. (If you can, peel the skin back slightly and rub a bit underneath.) The squab or pigeon should not take long to grill, perhaps thirty to forty minutes. Baste it with the glaze once or twice.

For seitan or tofu, marinate in the glaze for twenty minutes, grill briefly, serve atop rice or noodles with some stir-fried or steamed watercress, garnish with gomasio.

Note: Dark soy sauce has been aged for several years and is much more potent and saltier than regular shoyu. Mushroom soy sauce is dark soy sauce with mushroom extract.

A bird with an incredible navigation ability. It is able to return to its loft after being shipped away 1000 km to a destination it has never been. Its navigation system includes both low-frequency hearing (down to 1 Hz, as low-freq sound travels the furthest) and sensitivity to the earth's magnetic field.

Otherwise known as the rock dove, scientific name Columba livia, this bird has now nearly world-wide distribution, thanks to its association with human beings.

Originally native from Europe to North Africa and India, it was domesticated long ago and raised for food, trained for homing, racing and carrying messages, and has been used extensively in research. It now lives in cities all over the world. In places it has reverted to the wild, and nests on cliffs far from human habitation.

The rock dove was originally a seed-eater, and away from cities also eats waste grain, berries and acorns. It has been known to eat a few earthworms and some insects as well. In cities it may subsist primarily on popcorn, bread and other junk food provided by humans.

In the wild, the rock dove nests on sheltered cliff ledges. In cities, window ledges, rain gutters and similar sites provide an analog to the natural situation. The nest is built by the female with material provided by the male, of twigs, grass and similar materials. These birds probably mate for life. Each brood will be one or two eggs, but a pair may raise up to five broods per year.

The young will be fed "pigeon milk," a substance secreted by the crop, an enlarged pocket of the upper esophagus. During the nesting season the walls of the crop secrete a milky fluid that is rich in fat and protein. The young are fed pure pigeon milk for the first few days after hatching; then they begin to receive a mixture of the milk and some partially digested seeds or fruit. To be fed, the young bird will insert its bill into the corner of the parent's mouth, and the adult will regurgitate the milk or the mixture.

The birds do not migrate, and if they are displaced from a nesting area, they have a good homing ability to find it again. This ability was used in the past to make them carriers of messages.

The rock dove has few enemies in our cities. In some cities, peregrine falcons have begun to nest on high skyscraper ledges, and the falcons have found an abundant food source in the urban rock dove.

Having so few natural enemies, this flexible and adaptable bird very often makes a nuisance of itself in our cities, but it is impossible not to admire its persistence, and its success. While we have exterminated so many species of birds and animals, and we are rightly anxious about the extinction of so many life forms, this one makes its home in its numbers right under our noses, and thrives in the bargain.

Pi"geon (?), n. [F., fr. L. pipio a young pipping or chirping bird, fr. pipire to peep, chirp. Cf. Peep to chirp.]

1. Zool.

Any bird of the order Columbae, of which numerous species occur in nearly all parts of the world.

⇒ The common domestic pigeon, or dove, was derived from the Old World rock pigeon (Columba livia). It has given rise to numerous very remarkable varieties, such as the carrier, fantail, nun, pouter, tumbler, etc. The common wild pigeons of the Eastern United States are the passenger pigeon, and the Carolina dove. See under Passenger, and Dove. See, also, Fruit pigeon, Ground pigeon, Queen pigeon, Stock pigeon, under Fruit, Ground, etc.


An unsuspected victim of sharpers; a gull.


Blue pigeon Zool., an Australian passerine bird (Graucalus melanops); -- called also black-faced crow. -- Green pigeon Zool., any one of numerous species of Old World pigeons belonging to the family Treronidae. -- Imperial pigeon Zool., any one of the large Asiatic fruit pigeons of the genus Carpophada. -- Pigeon berry Bot., the purplish black fruit of the pokeweed; also, the plant itself. See Pokeweed. -- Pigeon English [perhaps a corruption of business English], an extraordinary and grotesque dialect, employed in the commercial cities of China, as the medium of communication between foreign merchants and the Chinese. Its base is English, with a mixture of Portuguese and Hindoostanee. Johnson's Cyc.<-- pidgin English??? --> -- Pigeon grass Bot., a kind of foxtail grass (Setaria glauca), of some value as fodder. The seeds are eagerly eaten by pigeons and other birds. -- Pigeon hawk. Zool. (a) A small American falcon (Falco columbarius). The adult male is dark slate-blue above, streaked with black on the back; beneath, whitish or buff, streaked with brown. The tail is banded. (b) The American sharp-shinned hawk (Accipiter velox, ∨ fuscus). -- Pigeon hole. (a) A hole for pigeons to enter a pigeon house. (b) See Pigeonhole. (c) pl. An old English game, in which balls were rolled through little arches. Halliwell. -- Pigeon house, a dovecote. -- Pigeon pea Bot., the seed of Cajanus Indicus; a kind of pulse used for food in the East and West Indies; also, the plant itself. -- Pigeon plum Bot., the edible drupes of two West African species of Chrysobalanus (C. ellipticus and C. luteus). -- Pigeon tremex. Zool. See under Tremex. -- Pigeon wood Bot., a name in the West Indies for the wood of several very different kinds of trees, species of Dipholis, Diospyros, and Coccoloba. -- Pigeon woodpecker Zool., the flicker. -- Prairie pigeon. Zool. (a) The upland plover. (b) The golden plover. [Local, U.S.]


© Webster 1913.

Pi"geon (?), v. t.

To pluck; to fleece; to swindle by tricks in gambling.



He's pigeoned and undone. Observer.


© Webster 1913.

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