Well, I haven't been able to locate the group that this pigeon belongs to. I've spent hours tracking down different organizations and heard from three different people - all with different opinions about the bird. I've worried about it's safety, and the other bird's that is still hanging around at Gail's store.
One guy told me the birds were racing birds but couldn't identify the group by the band number. Another told me that it looked like a performing bird, not a distance flier. Another one said releasing him wouldn't do any good; that it would still be lost. great.
My reasoning is that since the second bird (the one I caught) appeared a week after the first bird had been hanging around, they must be racing birds and on the same course. These competitions run through October in a lot of states, so it's possible that's what's happened here. It's getting late in the month and the nights are really getting cold. Not to mention predators. White animals stick out like a sore thumb and are such easy targets.
I've learned a fair amount about pigeons, both performing and racing, since catching this guy. I think I'm not liking the "sport" of racing. Basically, the birds have a homing instinct and are released far off somewhere with the task of getting back to their home loft. Sounds like a game of survival to me. I don't think I like it at all.
Anyway, I took the pigeon back to Gail's store this morning and sat him on the ground in the exact spot where I caught him...after giving him three kisses goodbye and telling him I hope he makes it. He didn't fly away - just went up to the top board on a display for the large pots. His friend was there all day yesterday, I was told, so at least they'll keep each other company.
To end on a more cheerful note, here is a picture of my pretty shelf and a better picture of my ladder that I bought at the Cameron sale a couple of weeks ago. I really like them a lot. The shelf is newly made; the ladder has some age to it.
I hope you're having a good day. The weather is gorgeous here today!!