Japanese Racing Pigeon Ends Up on Vancouver Island

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A Japanese racing pigeon had some internal navigation system glitches and ended up landing on Vancouver Island. Nearly 5 thousand miles from home, the disoriented bird was also underweight and parasite ridden.

A Japanese racing pigeon had some internal navigation system glitches and ended up landing on Vancouver Island.

Nearly 5 thousand miles from home, the disoriented bird was also underweight and parasite ridden. It was nursed back to health at a local avian rescue facility.

The pigeon was wearing two tags, one including an electronic tracker and the other with the owner’s phone number.

When contacted, the owner decided the transit fees to get the bird back to Japan were too steep.

After getting government clearance, the pigeon was passed along to an area collector who took it in with open arms. He said that it’s part of the honor code among keepers.

It’s rare for racing pigeons to lose their way, and there’s a theory that those who accidentally ended up far off course may have traveled there on a transit vessel of some kind.

Under typical conditions, the birds respond to the Earth’s magnetic field in a way that mimics using a compass.

Studies have shown the incoming data is compared to a map they have assembled and stored in the brain.

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