Pigeon mail yesterday and today

The carrier pigeon has been working for 15-20 years. A well-trained bird can fly up to 1000 km. The letter is usually placed in a plastic capsule and attached to the pigeon’s leg. It is customary to send two birds at the same time with the same messages, due to the danger of attacks from birds of prey, especially hawks.

Legends say that with the help of carrier pigeons, lovers exchanged notes. The first recorded case of a dove delivering a letter was in 1146 AD. Caliph of Baghdad (in Iraq) Sultan Nuruddin used pigeon mail to deliver messages in his kingdom.

During World War I, pigeons belonging to the American Army saved a battalion from being captured by the Germans. In India, the emperors Chandragupta Maurya (321-297 BC) and Ashoka used pigeon mail.

But, in the end, the post office, telegraph and the Internet appeared in the world. Despite the fact that the planet is surrounded by satellites, pigeon mail has not sunk into the past. The Orissa state police in India still use smart birds for their own purposes. They have 40 pigeons that have completed three training courses: static, mobile and boomerang.

Static category birds are instructed to fly to remote areas to communicate with headquarters. Pigeons of the mobile category perform tasks of varying complexity. The boomerang is the duty of the dove to deliver the letter and return with an answer.

Carrier pigeons are a very expensive service. They require expensive good nutrition, they require shark liver oil mixed with potash dissolved in water. In addition, they are demanding on the size of their cage.

Pigeons have repeatedly saved people during emergencies and natural disasters. During the celebration of the centenary of the Indian postal service in 1954, the Orissa police demonstrated the ability of their pets. The pigeons carried the message of the inauguration from the President of India to the Prime Minister. 

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