I have always known pigeons to be pigeons ever since I was in primary school.
They were practically everywhere. There would be flocks and scores of them on the school ground; always pecking away. Feeding... just feeding! How could I forget the coo-ing sounds they make? And, of course, the poo too!
Every once in a while, one of us kids would run into the flock of them just to watch them take off in a cloud and land again shortly after that.
It was only in recent years that I found out that its proper name should be Rock Pigeon. And because they are so common everywhere, you take them for granted to be just another pigeon and seldom take a good look at them.
Anyway, I was watching this flock of about twenty or so Rock Pigeons feeding on the lawn this morning when I noticed for the first time that they have reddish feet. Quite a nice colour, actually.
And I was somewhat fascinated by that.
I have since learnt that pure stock Rock Pigeons are predominantly grey with noticeably darker hood and breast, blackish tail tip and paler wing-coverts with two broad blackish bars. Neck glossed green and purple. This is according to the "New Holland Field Guide to Birds of South-East Asia" by Craig Robson.
Adult feral variants can be with patches of white and brown in plumage; some are all blackish. The next photo shows one of the feral variants.
So there I was sitting on the balcony, taking a break from work and watching the hypnotic movements of these tiny red feet while the pigeons move about in no particular order or direction as they happily peck away on the ground. Feeding as always...
And that was when I noticed this dark-coloured pigeon that seems to walk rather awkwardly. It did not have reddish pink feet like the others. And it seems to lift its feet higher when it walked.
Am I imagining it?
My eyes are now glued to its feet.
This next photo have been trimmed to get the enlarged image... mutant feet?
Its feet seems to be slightly larger in size. Could it be because of the feathers? Or not?
Or mutant pigeon?
It's the only one in this flock that has feathers covering its feet!