Wednesday, March 3, 2010


Today I see a dozen or more Pink-necked green pigeons busily gathering fruits from a tree. They always do so whenever there are fruiting trees around town.

They seem not to give any attention to the passing motorists. They just know that humans nowadays have no time to think about how good they are on plates!

They also know most probably very few people even know that they are edible and very delicious.

Kuantan city has lots of Pink-necked green pigeons. You can even see them right in the centre of the city. I remember seeing them on a tamarind tree near the taxi station. I wonder if the tree is still around.

Back home, there are plenty of them in our secondary forest covered piece of land. There too these birds flock in trees bearing fruits.

In Bahasa Melayu, they are called punai buah. There is also another type of pigeon called the Emerald pigeon (punai tanah) that prefer to dash in straight line not very high in the air. Their habit makes them very prone to crashing against glass windows or getting caught in fences.

In the sixties, they were shot at during their return home flight at near dusk. I used to run after the falling birds and get money for every bird that I brought back to the hunter.

When I was in Malacca, the then Governor used to order village folks to bring them to his palace. He liked the birds very much.

These birds are very easy to keep. I remember seeing them nesting in an aviary in KL Hospital's aviary despite of the crowd of visitors there.

Like the squabs (the youngs of the common pigeons), they too will make very good food if you know how to catch them, that is.

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