Albany Times Union

50 YEARS AGO

Game for pigeons on the menu?

- C.J. Lais Jr. and Azra Haqqie.

The question of what to do with the great number of pigeons that had overrun the city of Albany recalled the calamitous situation from a century ago when the English sparrow had been introduced to America believing the birds would put an end to caterpilla­rs which were destroying shade trees. They proved to be quarrelsom­e and intolerant of other winged creatures. The English sparrows were often shot at by young boys with their BB guns. The English sparrow had supplied Albany families with many a game dinner, prepared in the kitchen or over a fire in a nearby vacant lot. An article in the Times Union suggested using the pigeons on the menus of restaurant­s as squabs and in backyard barbecues in place of steak, saying a few weeks of this might help in reducing the pigeon population and saving a lot on cleaning bills.

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