Mysterious orange pigeon finally captured and rescued in Toronto
The flying Cheeto bird that has been mystifying Toronto residents with its sunset-coloured plumes for months has finally been rescued.
A pigeon that was presumably dyed orange by its former owners has been turning heads in the city since at least January, hanging out with other normal-hued pigeons and prompting multiple bird sightings.
The creamsicle-coloured avian also brought in a flurry of speculation and questions about if the bird was a pet, if its plumage was natural, and if it really was just a boring ole pigeon with hair dye.
If the mysterious bird is in fact domesticated, it likely wouldn’t have been able to survive with its wild counterparts and needed to be rescued.
Thankfully, the bird has entered a new chapter of its life at the Toronto Wildlife Centre.
The animal rescue centre posted on April Fools’ Day that the Cheeto bird was recently brought into their care, joking about the rare “creamsicle bird.”
🚨This is the rarest animal ever to be admitted to TWC!🚨
Commonly known as creamsicle birds, Columba aurantiacus are closely related to rock pigeons. Their bright colour is a clear indication to predators that this bird is poisonous. pic.twitter.com/EtM0mUow0m
— Toronto Wildlife Centre (@TWC_Wildlife) April 1, 2023
But it’s no joke that the pretty bird is now at the TWC, which confirms a good Samaritan brought the bird in for some love and care.
“The poor bird (who is a regular pigeon) was dyed orange. Although we don’t know why or who dyed him, the bright-coloured animal has made quite the scene with many Torontonians sharing sightings of him on social media,” read the centre’s post.
While the centre still doesn’t know if the bird was a pet, they confirmed that the paprika pigeon was not injured.
“We are trying to find the answers ourselves about the best course of action for the bird and if there is a reliable way to determine if the pigeon is domestic, wild or feral,” the director of the centre, Nathalie Karvonen, tells blogTO.
Here’s hoping this marigold feathered friend ends up with owners that know how to take care of it — and won’t dye it again!