How to Help a Pigeon Trapped in Netting
  • 28
  • May

How to Help a Pigeon Trapped in Netting

Pigeon Trapped in Net PETAThe death toll is rising. All across the country in public spaces – outside shops, at train stations or under bridges – pigeons are dying in pain after becoming trapped in netting designed to deter them.

Often, netting doesn’t effectively keep birds away, but it can cause them to become fatally entangled. As much as they struggle, the pigeons can’t escape in many cases, and, suspended in mid-air, they die a slow, agonising death from starvation or strangulation.

Seeing these animals suffer is extremely distressing – but you can take action to help them. You can do the following if you see a live bird trapped in a net:

  • Check to see whether there is any way that you can safely help the bird escape.
  • Report the trapped animal immediately to the shop, council or organisation responsible for the netting. It has a legal responsibility to release the trapped bird and prevent more birds from getting trapped.
  • Call the RSPCA’s Cruelty Line on 0300 1234 999, Irish SPCA Cruelty Helpline on 1890 515 515, or Scottish SPCA Animal Helpline on 03000 999 999. Give as much information as you can about exactly where the pigeon is and his or her condition. Ask that an inspector visit the location.
  • Take photographs as evidence.

For ongoing problems, such as places where you have seen birds repeatedly becoming entangled, in England and Wales you can also e-mail the RSPCA at, call your local wildlife police on 101 or contact the council.

Groups are campaigning to get these nets banned, but in the meantime, helping trapped pigeons is an example of everyday activism that anyone can do, and it really can save lives.

Another way to help these gentle, loyal birds is to join our campaign to end cross-Channel races, in which each year, thousands of pigeons perish, exhausted, alone and far from home. Send a message to Defra today asking for a ban on this cruel sport.

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  1. Please everyone sign my petition to get these nets banned. Time is running out for this petition.

  2. There is already enough abuse of all of Gods creatures on this Earth who have no ability to defend them selves or speak out so we who care must speak for them. Stop this un holy trapping of innocent creatures please.

  3. that is awful, but until you brought it to light i have never even thought about it. you go about your business & dont bother to look up to see if there are any pidgeons caught in these wires. i certainly will look now.

  4. avatar Marion L B Dill says:

    PETA, thank you for raising awareness of this. This is a cruel way of deterring pigeons to take shelter. During my 27 years in London, I did a lot of pro-pigeon work and got to see what wonderful, intelligent, perceptive birds they are. Like any animal, they don’t deserve the bad press they’re getting and they certainly don’t deserve to be persecuted that way.
    Thank you for your hard work.

  5. avatar suzi says:

    In Scotland you should call the Scottish spca on 03000 999 999. Suzi

  6. avatar elodie says:

    STOP THIS!!!!

    • avatar christine maunder says:

      i am discusted at the treatment of birds and four legged animals they were here before we were so come on you horrible people give them a chance c maunder

  7. avatar Jacqueline Hunter says:

    So sad.

  8. avatar Debbie Trindle says:

    For pity sake save our birds they helped us in the war days. Why do you have to put this netting up? There must be other ways to benefit both the human race and the birds.

  9. avatar Mariette Eriksson says:

    Stop this its cruel

  10. avatar sue wadland says:

    Im absolutely disgusted animals can be treated in this way you ought to be ashamed of yourselves,

  11. avatar sue wadland says:

    Im absolutely disgusted the way you treat animals you ought to be ashamed of yourselves,how would you like to die in agony

  12. avatar kevin says:

    oh man, if only there was millions of these animals in every city, oh wait there is. so how would you suggest we deal with this? maybe by smashing the eggs before they are born? or poison? these animals breed totally unchecked, and overpopulation is inevitable. then what do you do? will you pay for the feeding and care, out of your own pocket? because i dont want MY tax money feeding these flying rats.

  13. avatar Daryl Michael says:

    I think this netting should be banned, Im sick of seeing pigeons hobbling about on stumps because this netting has become wound around their feet causing their toes to drop off through lack of circulation, they must suffer so much poor creatures.

  14. avatar BEVERLEY REES says:

    I am sick and tired of seeing humans thinking we have the divine right to make animals suffer because they do not fit in with some peoples idea of how the world must be. Stop using this netting and trapping these birds till they die a gruesome death.

  15. avatar Nikki Reid says:

    This netting causes unnecessary suffering and should be banned!!!:((

  16. avatar Harry Taylor says:

    At least make sure that appropriate netting is used that stops birds from dying.

  17. avatar linda mcgovern says:

    Ban please

  18. avatar riche says:

    please stop this cruelty its a disgrace .

  19. avatar Becky holland says:

    I agree this should be stopped and I am willing to see the petition

  20. avatar Dot Pleydell says:

    Understand they don’t want pigeons landing but find a more humane way of stopping them

  21. avatar Gejo Canovas says:

    When I was little I used to enjoy going to the park to feed the pigeons, I still do occasionally. I love to see them flying around because they bring certain kind of warmth to the city. I do not understand why some people hate them so much.

  22. avatar sandra paulden says:

    please stop using these the poor birds must suffer so much .

  23. avatar susan anne booth says:

    Pleas stop this cruel barbaric treatment of helpless birds imediatly !

  24. avatar Helen Ibach says:

    Please consider the suffering caused by these nets and find an alternative that causes no harm.

  25. avatar Darren Green says:

    Ban this netting now.

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