18 May 2014

Spring Shooting of Wild Pigeons Should Stop

Since the advent of comparatively warm weather, nearly every one who likes to shoot has been watching anxiously and with hope to see wild pigeons flying in this vicinity in such numbers as would invite sportsmen to sally forth in their pursuit. But though there have been many reports that the big flocks were heading this way, the expectations built on those statements have thus far proved delusive and the guns remained unused. Pigeons were seen in fair numbers a few days ago at Buffalo and towards Corning, but have now disappeared from those districts, leaving those who hoped for sport to mourn. If there are any so desirous of a day's shooting at pigeons as to visit Tideout, Pa., for the purpose, there is positive assurance that some may be had. George T. Stillson to-day received a communication from a friend at that town, saying that the boys were shooting great numbers and netters were catching the birds by the hundred dozen. They are resting near Tideouts, and must remain there until the young are able to fly. While announcing where the birds may be found, we would not be understood as approving of the custom by which the pigeons are harassed in their nesting ground or during the season of incubation. The system is inhumane, unsportsmanlike, and must if continued assist materially in exterminating the pigeon race. — The necessary destruction of forests in these Eastern States is of itself sufficient to go far in driving the pigeons from the country, and when to this is added the wanton destruction of the birds at all seasons, it is plain that they must soon become about as rare as the dodo. this is a consummation devoutly to be regretted, and sportsmen's clubs should take some effectual action o stop the killing of the birds in this wholesale manner. In this State the law forbids the shooting of the birds within half a mile of the nestling ground, but that provision is useless even if enforced, for the mature birds must fly far from the nests to get food, and can then be slaughtered at will. Killing them at all during the breeding season should cease.

March 28, 1878. The latest from the wild pigeons - spring shooting should stop. Rochester Union and Advertiser 53(74): 2.