Pink Pigeon Puzzle - can you work it out?

A bright pink pigeon has been spotted in the skies over Darlington. Its lurid colour is proving a pink puzzle for passers-by.

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'Pink pigeon' sightings puzzle in the North East

A pink bird, resembling a pigeon, sits on a rooftop in Darlington
There have been several sightings of the mysterious pink bird in the North East in the past day Credit: North News

Sightings of a mysterious pink bird have puzzled locals in the North East this week.

The bird has been spotted by several passers-by attempting to blend in among pigeons, but its true breed has remained in doubt - spouting much speculation.

However, Nik Shelton of the Royal Society for the Protection of Birds (RSPB), believes the pink plumage can be easily explained.

"The bird has clearly been dyed," he said.

"It is likely to be a captive dove and we have had reports of these being dyed strange colours and released at special events.

"This one has clearly not returned to its owner afterwards," Mr Shelton added.

See more pictures of the 'pink pigeon' on ITV Tyne Tees

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Pink Pigeon or Day-Glo Dove?

Tickled pink on Darlington rooftops Credit: North News

After examining the pictures Nik Shelton of the Royal Society for the Protection of Birds (RSPB) said: "The bird has clearly been dyed. "It is likely to be a captive dove and we have had reports of these being dyed strange colours and released at special events.

"This one has clearly not returned to its owner afterwards."

Pink pigeon spotted on Darlington rooftops

A bright pink pigeon has been spotted on the rooftops and in the skies, over Darlington in County Durham.

In the pink: has this bird been dyed? Credit: North News

As the photograph above shows, its efforts to blend in with its grey cousins has proved futile.

And the sight has shocked and puzzled people who have seen it.

One dog-walker said: "I just couldn't believe my eyes. For a moment I had to look again, and again, just to make sure I wasn't hallucinating."

However, the RSPB believe it may not be a pigeon at all.

It is not a new species, but could in fact be a dove that has been dyed pink and then released during a special event.

But instead of returning to its owner it has broken free and made new friends in the pigeon world.

And for that, it is probably tickled pink.