White Doves

lexi7November 16, 2008

If releasing white doves in a ceremony seems romantic to you, read on.

A small white pigeon showed up on my front porch the other evening and roosted there on the cold concrete all night. It had a broken wing and looked stressed, so I did not want to stress it further by trying to catch it. I put out some bread for the poor thing, but he did not know to eat it. The next day he walked all around the yard hunting food, but refused anything I tried to give him. He was afraid of me, so I did not try to get too close. I put a paper filled basket near the place where he roosted the previous night, but he refused it. He spent a second night on the front porch concrete in freezing temperatures.

I called the neighbors to see if someone knew of anybody who raised pigeons in hopes they would come get him. Come to find out, "white doves" were released not far from our house in a ceremony. I donÂt know what happened to the other "dove", but the one that found its way here was snatched up by a hawk while trying to feed on the ground with a broken wing. Releasing white doves might seem romantic, but it certainly was not a romantic death for the birds.

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Lexi, that was not at all what I expected when I opened this post. Very tragic!

    Bookmark   November 18, 2008 at 10:23PM
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I know Silversword and I softened it a lot. There is a big marketing program going on right now for using white doves in ceremonies. They are really selling small white pigeons and calling them doves. It sounds romantic and looks beautiful, but I think people need to be aware of what happens after the ceremony to the birds. I wish I could tell the whole world what I saw so they would not be cruel to animals. People can have a nice wedding or funeral without torturing creatures.

    Bookmark   November 19, 2008 at 9:22AM
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They have something similar with butterflies. It's just as awful, but on a smaller scale. I don't see the beauty in raising and caging live animals to be released where they are not accustomed to fend for themselves. I wish there were a better way to get your story out. I'm sorry you had to go through that, it really sounds like an awful experience. I'd feel so hopeless!

    Bookmark   November 19, 2008 at 12:09PM
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Silversword, exactly and thank you for understanding

    Bookmark   November 20, 2008 at 10:05AM
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Poor bird. Part of my family is Irish, I know my Godmother would have a fit if there was a bird anywhere near a wedding ceremony. Bad luck. Especially for the bird, it would seem.

    Bookmark   November 28, 2008 at 9:48PM
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I own a business where we release doves at weddings, funerals and special events.(The doves are actually homing pigeons)

We carefully breed and train our birds to fly home to us after being released. 95% of our birds will return after the event.

What we do is exactly the same as what pigeon racers do, except that we only use white birds and we limit the distance that we will take them away from home.

We treat our birds exactly like any beloved pet. We are protective of them at events, we don't release them in bad weather or if it is too close to dark (because they don't fly in the dark).

Some people decide to take short cuts and try to buy white pigeons or doves from pet stores, but of course, they don't know how to fly home and often the "dove release" does not go as planned because the birds will often not fly at all.

I am working to educate people to only release doves that have been trained by someone from a "dove release business" to fly home after weddings and funerals for the safety of the birds and the enjoyment of those that wish to have a memorable dove release at their event.

    Bookmark   December 10, 2008 at 8:30PM
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