Frillback Pigeon – One Of The Easiest Pigeons To Raise

With the beautiful curly feathers it has on its back, the Frillback Pigeon is one of the more unique looking domesticated pigeons. Let’s take a little look at this beautiful pigeon in a bit more depth, shall we?

Frillback Pigeon
Frillback Pigeon (Photo by danielsorensen)

Where Do Frillback Pigeon Come From?

To be honest with you, nobody actually knows where the Frillback Pigeon comes from. Chances are that it didn’t really originate from anywhere.

Like most pigeon breeds, it is likely that there were hundreds of different breeders contributing to the creation of the Frillback Pigeon, and this is likely to have taken place over hundreds of years.

The best guess for where the Frillback Pigeon originates from is ‘somewhere in Asia’, which isn’t all that specific, is it?

To give you an idea of how old this breed is (plus how famous it is), this was one of the pigeons that Charles Darwin kept as a pet.

He talked about it in the Origin of Species which, of course, is where the theory of evolution is discussed. His pigeon came from India, but there is no evidence that he bred it himself.

The Unique Look of This Pigeon

The Frillback Pigeon is known for being a little bit larger than other breeds of pigeon. However, of course, the main highlight of the bird is the stunning feathers that they boast.

Frillback Pigeon
Brown Frillback Pigeon (Photo by Jennifer Graevell)

They have curly feathers on their back. The rest of the bird will be normal feathering, but the back will be covered in curls. It almost looks like somebody with curly hair.

The Frillback Pigeon is available in several different colors, and all of these color variations can be taken to pigeon shows around the world.

Frillback Pigeons as Show Birds

This is a pigeon that has pretty much been designed for use at pigeon shows. If you live in a fairly populated area, then we can virtually guarantee that there will be a pigeon show or two closeby that allows the showing of the Frillback Pigeon. Is the quintessential show bird.

Frillback Pigeon (Photo by Haseeb ANSAR)

Of course, as with most popular show birds, the competition is going to be exceedingly tough. If this is your first time raising this bird, then you probably will not have a show quality specimen.

Well, not unless you paid through the nose for it. Luckily for you, the fairly unique look of the Frillback Pigeon means that it is going to be fairly decent for those that are planning on raising a bird for ornamental purposes.

If you have this bird on show, people will love it. It is a talking point.

The Frillback Pigeon as a Pet

The unique look of the Frillback Pigeon means that it is often purchased as a pet. Luckily, this is one of the easiest of pigeon breeds to raise.

It doesn’t really have any unique care requirements, and it is an overall friendly bird. If you interact with the pigeon daily, then it is really going to enjoy it.

Honestly, this bird can be a pretty decent companion. However, do bear in mind that nearly every pigeon breed is a social bird. As a result, you will probably need to have 3 or 4 of them.

Breeding Frillback Pigeons

This bird is very difficult to breed. Some people will find that any birds they breed may produce offspring with very few curls, or perhaps no curls at all.

There is very little that you can do about this, sadly. Breeding of the Frillback Pigeon is really only reserved for those that are planning to take it to shows and the like. It is not ideal for the average pigeon owner.

That being said, the Frillback Pigeon is a fairly broody bird, which means you can use it to hatch the eggs of other pigeons if you want! It does seem to do a decent job at that.

Are They Used for Meat and Eggs?

Since this pigeon is larger than most other breeds of pigeon, there are some people out there that will raise it for meat. You may find that the ‘less than perfect’ offspring produced will be slaughtered for meat. However, it never has been the main purpose for this breed.

While it is not that common for people to consume pigeon eggs nowadays, there are some people that will consume the Frillback Pigeon eggs.

However, to be honest with you, this is again not the main purpose of the breed. Think of the eggs as a side benefit of owning this bird. If you enjoy pigeon eggs, then there are plenty of other birds out there for you.

Related article: Lahore Pigeon.

Can Frillback Pigeons Fly?

A lot of people seem to pick up this pigeon breed because they are of the belief that it cannot fly. We suppose that assumption would make sense.

You would normally think that a pigeon with curly feathers couldn’t fly. Most birds with oddly shaped feathers do struggle to fly straight. However, they can.

Yes, the Frillback pigeon can fly. This means that it is going to need to be kept in an enclosed area to ensure that it cannot escape.

You will not be able to clip the wings, because then it would no longer be a show quality pigeon, would it?

That being said, it is rare that you will see this pigeon even attempt it. Most of them seem to enjoy walking everywhere. We still wouldn’t really recommend that you try and give it the ability to free roam.

It will probably fly away. However, the fact that it spends most of the time milling around on the ground means that it may need a lot less vertical space than other pigeon breeds.

Care Tips

There isn’t really anything special that you need to know if you want to raise the Frillback Pigeon. They are a dreadfully simple bird to raise.

You may need to maintain their feathers a little bit due to the curly nature allowing them to pick up dust and other filth a little bit easier but, even then, it is probably not going to be vital. Your only real difficulty will be actually breeding the bird.

As for the diet, the pigeons are primarily seed eater. Provide them a balanced diet and they will be fine. The ideal feed for will contain a mix of yellow/green peas, pellets for poultry, wheat, corn and safflower.

Because they are seed eaters, make sure that you always have some grit available for them (oyster shells are great for example). You can purchase any chicken grit or you can make your own.

Let’s meet these awesome pigeon breeds:
Lahore pigeon
Jacobin pigeon
Archangel pigeon

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