Pigeon Sounds And Noises Explained

At first, the pigeon may seem like a quiet bird, however, if you listen closely, you will notice that pigeons make all sorts of sounds or noises. Subtle ones, but noises nonetheless. So, what are these pigeon sounds? What is the meaning behind all the pigeon sounds? Let’s dive in and take a little look what sound does a pigeon make, shall we?

pigeon sounds and noises, coo

What Sounds Does A Pigeon Make?

Before we go any further and really start to talk about pigeon sounds, we do want to point out that this is a bird that is mostly quite quiet.

A pigeon barely makes a sound. In fact, the only time that you really do hear sounds of pigeon is if there is something wrong, or they are trying to mate.

However, generally speaking pigeons make two types of sounds:

  • Cooing
  • Grunting

Pigeon Sounds and Noises – The Meaning

The pigeon is mostly quiet, so, if you have a pet pigeon, there is a strong chance that you will never hear a pigeon sound and, but if you do, it will probably only be their mating calls.

Pigeon Coo or Cooing

When people think of the sounds pigeons make, it is likely that the first one to spring to mind would be cooing. This is a small, subtle ‘coo-coo’ sound.

In almost all cases, the pigeon cooing is going to be a mating call. During the mating season for a pigeon (which is probably going to be spring or fall), they will make this sound quite a lot. You may or may not see it in a captive-bred pigeon.

Of course, they are still going to have their ‘needs’ just like any other bird, but some people do report that they do not make a cooing sound. Well, at least after a short while.

If you have multiple pigeons, then you may also hear this cooing sound. This is because the birds talk to each other like this.

In fact, if you do have multiple pigeons, then we suggest that you listen really, really close to the sounds that they make. You will very quickly notice that while it is mostly ‘cooing’, it will not always sound the same.

The frequencies can change. In some cases, it will almost seem as if their ‘cooing’ is somewhat on the more excited side, and in other cases, it may be more of a warning sound.

This is just the animals talking to one another and letting each other know what is happening.

As we said before; if you do have a pigeon that lives on its own, which is not recommended since these birds are quite social animals, you may not hear any cooing.

This is probably a learned behavior, and thus if they do not have other pigeons to talk to, then it is not going to happen. That being said, some people do report that the pigeons try to catch their attention with a bit of cooing on occasion.

For the most part, cooing is not really something that you need to worry about. If your pigeon is cooing, then they are just talking. They are not in distress or anything like that.

However, as we said before, it is rare that a pigeon makes a sound. Even if you have multiple pigeons, it could be days and days before you notice anything. Often, the cooing is going to be so quiet that it is not noticeable.

Pigeon Coo – Sound of Doves Cooing

Pigeon Singing

Technically, pigeons do not have a ‘song’ like other birds. Pretty much the only sound pigeons will make is the cooing (and one other, which we will talk about shortly).

However, we do want to point out that, on occasion, you may hear a mating song from the pigeon. It is still technically cooing, but it sounds a little bit different.

When the pigeon is looking for a mate, you may notice sounds of pigeon similar to cooing for long periods of time. They will modulate their sound, and it actually sounds quite beautiful.

As they do this, they will be wandering around ‘strutting their stuff’. You may also notice that they do a short display with their feathers. This is when you know that they are trying to mate.

pigeon coo, sounds and noises
Pigeon Sounds and Noises

Wing Beating

This is something which pigeons do sometimes when they are about to fly. This is something that only a few breeds of pigeon will do.

While we can’t know for sure exactly why pigeons beat their wings before taking flight, it is likely that it is a way to signify to other birds in the area that they are about to leave.

Remember; pigeons are social creatures, and this means that they will want to stick together. If one bird leaves, then the rest will leave. You will notice this a lot if you see pigeons ‘in the wild’. As soon as one bird leaves, the others do too.

In rare cases, the wing beating may also be part of their mating dance. However, once again, this is really something limited to certain breeds of pigeon.

This is a behavior innate in a pigeon. Even pigeons that struggle to fly (i.e. those that have had their wings clipped) will likely beat their wings together.


The only other pigeon sound that you may hear a pigeon make is a low grunt. This is going to be quite audible. If you hear a grunt coming from your pigeon, then it does indicate that something is wrong.

Pigeons will almost certainly grunt when they are injured. They may also grunt when there is a predator in the vicinity. If your bird does not trust you, then they will likely grunt when you get close to them.

If your bird is regularly grunting, and you can’t see why they are grunting, then there is likely something seriously wrong with them. Remember; these are prey birds. So, be aware of these pigeon noises.

They tend to not show when they are injured. It would mean their death in the wild. However, regular grunting would indicate problems. Try to get to the bottom of it, or try to take your pigeon to the vet to see whether they are able to spot something is wrong.

Hopefully, grunting is one of the pigeon sounds that you never end up hearing. Thankfully, most pigeon owners are unlikely to ever hear this sound!

Final Thoughts about Pigeon Sounds

When you think about it, pigeons make a lot of noises. Whether they are cooing to other birds in the flock or making their own personal little sounds.

There is plenty going on up in that gray head of theirs! So what do all these pigeon sounds mean?

We can’t answer this question for sure but we’re still happy to share some facts with you about why these animals would be vocalizing at any given time.

Related articles:
– Lahore pigeon
– Frillback pigeon
Roller pigeons and Tumbler pigeons

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