I stand by the open French windows while Darby sits on the fence viewing me quizzically with one eye. Suddenly with a whirr of wings, he lands in front of my feet and advances until he is six inches from my toes. Trying not to startle him, I grab a crust from the kitchen and return to the door. The pigeon has flown back up to his perch on the post. As I crumble and toss a few specks of bread on the patio, he cranes his head around to watch.
I go out and sit on the bench and wait. Not for long. He soon swoops down to join me and nonchalantly he picks up the crumbs. With baited breath I hold my hand low to the ground, offering him more. He carries on finding invisible food but keeps looking back and forward at my hand. I talk to him and make clicking noises with my tongue and all the time he is zig-zagging ever closer until, finally, he aims a peck at the food that I hold. He doesn’t grab it properly and I drop it in surprise. Quickly he picks it up and moves away. I offer another piece, he comes back and this time manages to aim a gentle but swift beak towards the bread. Connection!


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