St. Paul’s Skyway Pigeon Rookery

Each year my wife and I attend the American Craft Council show at St. Paul RiverCentre, this year on April 8. The level of artistry and skill is breathtaking. I highly recommend it, but that’s not the reason for this post. Each year we park in the Kellogg Blvd. ramp and walk across the skyway, which is constructed of vertical and diagonal steel beams that meet at floor level in a series of 45 degree angles. There are at least a dozen of these angles on each side, and in almost every one was a pigeon sitting on a nest. That was last year.

A nesting pigeon on the snowy side of the skyway.

A nesting pigeon on the snowy side of the skyway.

The show is held about the same week every year, and sure enough, the pigeons were again on the nest from one end of the bridge to the other. I pulled out the cel phone and took these photos. There was a snow squall blowing through, and the birds were hunkered down and looking rather miserable. One nest had an egg and no bird. In another, the hatched chick was huddled against its mother.

Not sure if this nest was abandoned or mom just left for awhile.

Not sure if this nest was abandoned or mom just left for awhile.

Look closely and you can see the hatched chick at left.

Look closely and you can see the hatched chick at left.

I know pigeons get no respect. The nests were spare and dirty. No one would think to place a DNR bird cam here, but it’s still interesting to see how nature has found a way in the middle of the city.

 

Aaron Isaacs

About Aaron Isaacs

Aaron retired in 2006 after 33 years as a planner and manager for Metro Transit, where he worked in route and schedule planning, operations, maintenance, transit facilities, light rail and traffic advantages for buses. He created the bus-only shoulder and developed 270 miles of them, a national model. He worked on the Met Council's first TOD handbook. He's an historian of transit, as a 40+ year volunteer with the Minnesota Streetcar Museum. He's co-author of Twin Cities by Trolley, The Streetcar Era in Minneapolis and St. Paul, and author of Twin Ports by Trolley on Duluth-Superior.

6 thoughts on “St. Paul’s Skyway Pigeon Rookery

  1. James WardenJames Warden

    I love this post. What a neat glimpse into a tucked away little part of our urban environment.

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