Tuesday, September 1, 2009

Pigeons -- the most intelligent of the bird species

Birds of a feather drink together: The three clever pigeons who help each other sup from a water fountain

They obviously have a better class of pigeon Down Under.

Instead of pecking around on the filthy pavements among cigarette butts and chewing gum, they prefer to sip filtered water and go to great lengths for a bath.

The trio pictured in the article, in Brisbane, Queensland, appear to have worked out a clever system of adapting the water fountain built by humans for their own pigeon purposes.

Coo-l: drink: As one pigeon sucks up water (left), another stands on the lever (right) and the third keeps watch

After waiting for the fountain to be free, one bird jumped on the lever and pushed it down to fill up the bowl, while another kept watch and the third splashed in.

When it had drunk its fill and cleaned its feathers, the third pigeon hopped up to the handle and let his friends have a go.

The three birds continued their bathing ritual for ten minutes, entertaining passers-by in Post Office Square, in Brisbane's bustling business district.

Unlike other birds, who take a sip of water and throw back their heads to swallow, pigeons suck up water using their beaks like straws.

Though they aren't very popular in this part of the world and are referred to as rats of the sky, pigeons - even the English ones - are considered among the most intelligent of all the bird species.

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