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Coo blimey! Racing pigeon dropped by bird of prey - lands in zoo

A racing pigeon that went missing five weeks ago plummeted from the sky straight into a zoo.

This 'very lucky' racing pigeon escaped the clutches of a buzzard by landing in a zoo Credit: Dartmoor Zoo

Known as 'The Pit Man', the pigeon was due to return to his owner in Abertillery weeks ago following a race 500 miles away in the South of France.

Meerkats at Dartmoor Zoo in Devon signalled the presence of a bird of prey in the sky. "Suddenly there was a commotion overhead," said zoo worker Justin Aird. "Moments later, the pigeon dropped out of the sky and landed nearby."

Zoo owner Colin Northcott with the lucky pigeon Credit: Dartmoor Zoo

Obviously the bird was very shaken and had sustained some minor injuries but he was very lucky to have fallen where he did. If it had been anywhere else, even in a more remote part of the zoo, the buzzard would surely have finished him off.

– Colin Northcott, Dartmoor Zoo

The injured bird was taken in by the zoo and they contacted his owner Craig Dewar. "His perch in our loft has been empty for five weeks now. I was thrilled to hear that he’d been recovered," Mr Dewar said.

The bird has been assessed fit to travel soon - but won't have to fly the remaining 140 miles home. He's being sent by special courier.