Species group: Domestic Fancy Pigeons
Other common names: N/A
Scientific name: Columba livia domestica
The Texan Pioneer Pigeon is a utility breed developed in the mid-twentieth century from the King and the French Mondaine Pigeons. They were designed to produce efficient squabs, so the breeders placed a premium on birds with large meaty breasts that matured quickly. As an added bonus, these pigeons can be sexed on sight, since the males come in lighter colors then the females. Because of their interesting shape and calm nature, these birds were soon recognized for their show quality.
The Texan Pioneer Pigeon has a large, plump breast which stands out by contrast with the small head, wings, tail, and feet. This breed was developed as a pigeon that could be easily sexed at a glance from the day of hatching. Females tend to be darker, coming in faded shades of blue, black, or an red. Males tend to be white with some flecking. A Recessive Red variety has appeared, with red females and pale yellow males.
800 - 965 grams (28 - 34 oz.)
29 - 30 centimeters (11.5 in.)
7 - 10 years
Like their ancestor the King Pigeons, the calm Texan Pioneer seems born to be a show bird.
Healthy pigeons acclimate easily to most any weather conditions. Most pigeon fanciers keep their pigeons in a large outdoor aviary called a loft although King Pigeons also enjoy living as a household pet. There should be a minimum of 4 square feet of floor space for every 2 birds. An aviary 4 feet in width and 6 feet in length can house a maximum of 12 birds. Overcrowding can result in disease outbreaks and fighting. Ease of cleaning, providing enough space, protection from predators, and giving the choice to be protected from the elements are key elements to designing a healthy outdoor habitat. If you are not planning on breeding or are not prepared for the added responsibility of more birds then separate the sexes otherwise they will breed. Aviaries and cages must be cleaned daily to maintain a healthy environment for both the birds and owners. In addition all hard surfaces and housing should be disinfected monthly using proper disinfection procedures. This is done by first by scrubbing with a soap and water, then rinse thoroughly, and lastly applying a disinfectant such as bleach per the label instructions.
Pet pigeons need a balanced diet that includes a variety of nutritious seeds, produce, and some pellets. Providing healthy foods for your pigeon helps to maintain their feather condition and helps to ensure a long and healthy life. A bird on an all seed diet with limited choices will become fat and more easily susceptible to disease. To start, the majority of their diet should be seeds such as grains, hemp, flax, grass, oat, and thistle. Beans are an excellent source of plant proteins. Greens such as kale and dandelion should be offered daily. Formulated pellets help to supplement any nutrients missing in their diet. Wild pigeons regularly eat ants, slugs, and snails and pet pigeons will readily eat these as well. Wild bird seed mixes should never be fed as these are low in nutrients. Fresh, clean water and food should be available at all times.