how long do pigeons live
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How Long Do Pigeons Live?

Pigeons are fascinating birds that have been a part of human civilization for thousands of years. Known for their distinctive cooing sound and ability to fly long distances, pigeons have become a common sight in urban areas all around the world. However, have you ever wondered how long these birds actually live? In this article, we will explore the lifespan of pigeons and uncover some interesting facts about their longevity.

Factors Affecting Pigeon Lifespan

Before diving into the specific lifespan of pigeons, it is important to understand the various factors that can affect their longevity. These factors include:

1. Species

There are over 300 species of pigeons worldwide, each with its own unique characteristics and lifespan. Different species may have varying lifespans due to genetic factors and environmental conditions.

2. Habitat

The habitat in which pigeons live plays a crucial role in their lifespan. Pigeons that reside in urban areas may have a shorter lifespan due to exposure to pollution, predators, and lack of natural resources. On the other hand, pigeons living in rural or protected areas tend to have a longer lifespan.

3. Diet

The diet of pigeons greatly impacts their overall health and lifespan. Pigeons that have access to a balanced diet consisting of grains, seeds, fruits, and vegetables are more likely to live longer compared to those that rely on unhealthy food sources.

4. Predators

Pigeons face threats from various predators, including birds of prey, domestic cats, and humans. The presence of predators in their environment can significantly reduce their lifespan.

How Long Do Pigeons Live?

The average lifespan of pigeons varies depending on the species and environmental factors. However, in general, pigeons can live anywhere from 3 to 15 years in the wild. Some well-cared-for pigeons in captivity have been known to live up to 20 years or more.

Here are a few examples of popular pigeon species and their average lifespans:

1. Rock Pigeon

The rock pigeon, also known as the common pigeon or city pigeon, is the most widespread species of pigeon. These birds typically live for about 3 to 5 years in the wild.

2. Homing Pigeon

Homing pigeons, known for their remarkable ability to find their way back home over long distances, have an average lifespan of 5 to 7 years.

3. Racing Pigeon

Racing pigeons, bred specifically for their speed and endurance in racing competitions, can live for 7 to 15 years if well taken care of by their owners.

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)

Q: How can I determine the age of a pigeon?

A: Determining the exact age of a pigeon can be challenging. However, some signs that indicate a pigeon is older include faded feathers, worn beak, and reduced activity levels.

Q: Do pigeons mate for life?

A: Yes, pigeons are known to mate for life. Once they find a compatible partner, they usually stay together until one of them dies.

Q: Can pigeons survive in extreme weather conditions?

A: Pigeons have adapted well to various weather conditions and can survive in extreme heat or cold. However, severe weather events can pose a threat to their survival.


Pigeons may be a common sight in our cities, but they lead fascinating lives with varying lifespans. While factors such as species, habitat, diet, and predators can influence their longevity, pigeons generally live for 3 to 15 years in the wild. By understanding the factors that affect their lifespan and taking steps to provide a suitable environment, we can appreciate and coexist with these remarkable birds for years to come.

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