Bird of the Week: the Wonga Pigeon

Australia has quite a number of native pigeons, but none of them quite match the Wonga Pigeon, Leucosarcia melanoleuca.

The photo doesn’t really do it justice: the Wonga is a seriously large amount of pigeon.

Source: Glen Fergus, O’Reillys Guest House, Queensland

While quite shy, the Wonga pigeon is a ground-forager. Around Bunjaree Cottages, early risers can get lucky and surprise a Wonga Pigeon around their cottages.

If the pigeon sees or hears someone, it will leave as quickly as possible, and here you will get your second treat: its takeoff is noisy and rather ungainly because they’re so heavy by pigeon standards. The wing-clapping noise is quite impressive.