Young pigeon hitches lift on Navy ship

A Royal Navy ship was joined by an unexpected visitor on board last week - a young pigeon.

Steve, as he was named by crew members, was found in a hangar at the top of HMS Ocean.

There were no parents to be seen so the crew took on the pigeon’s care -including feeding him by hand - until the ship docked a few days later in Southampton.

HMS Ocean found an unexpected stowaway of Steve the pigeon Credit: RSPCA

When the ship returned to Southampton on the 19th July, one of the crew handed Steve the pigeon over to the RSPCA and the bird is now being after in Fareham.

He will continue his rehabilitation at the charity’s dedicated West Hatch wildlife centre in Taunton, from where he will be released back to the wild once he is ready.

This was certainly one of the most unusual places we’ve collected a bird from.

“The crew, especially Sam, the crew member who looked after Steve, and the captain, went above and beyond to care for this young bird who wouldn’t have survived without their help. We can’t thank them enough for their efforts.

“The future looks good for Steve - he just needs to build his strength to get ready for the wild and he can do that in our specialist aviaries now that he’s eating for himself.”

– Inspector Ward

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