What to Do With a Dead Pigeon? Complete Guide in 2024

Finding a dead pigeon in the backyard is unpleasant for any pet owner. You may encounter such an unpleasant thing because pigeons often die by hitting on windows, being attacked by predators, or from some diseases.

For the safety of you and your other birds, you need to dispose of the dead bird properly using proper protective measures.

This article will discuss what to do with a dead pigeon when you do not know how it has died.

What to Do With a Dead Pigeon

What to Do With a Dead Pigeon

If you find a dead pigeon, first try to find out what may have happened to it. If the bird lies near your window, it may have hit the window or building and died. You can look for any visible injury from a predator on the bird’s body. Pigeons can also die from some illnesses without keeping any visible trace on its body.

However, it is better to dispose of the pigeon instantly to avoid any kind of contagious disease. Although there is a meager chance of transmitting infectious diseases from pigeons to humans, you would better handle the dead bird cautiously.

How to Dispose of a Dead Pigeon?

Dead pigeon

To dispose of a dead pigeon, follow the following procedures.

Check if the pigeon is dead

If you need to dispose of a dead pigeon yourself, Ensure the bird is dead. Make a sound, or throw gravel or a small object near the bird to check if it moves. You can also examine if it is dead by poking it with a long twig or stick.

Wear hand gloves and put the dead bird in a plastic bag

wear hand gloves

If the pigeon does not move or breathe, you can pick up the dead bird wearing a pair of thick hand gloves. You can also handle the bird with a layer of thick and leakproof plastic bags if any glove is unavailable.

If you hesitate to pick up the dead bird by hand, you can use a shovel to pick it up and then dispose of it in a plastic bag. Do not touch a dead pigeon or any dead bird with bare hands.

Seal the plastic bag tightly

trash bag

Carefully handle the bird so that your skin does not get scratched by its sharp beak or nails. Once you pick up the dead pigeon in the plastic bag, seal it tightly or make a twist tie.

Wrap the bag with another plastic bag, seal that tightly and dispose of the dead bird with your household trash. You can throw the gloves in that plastic bag.

Clean your hands and the area where the dead bird lay

wash your hand

Now wash your hands with soap and lukewarm water before touching anything. And finally, sterilize the used equipment keeping them for at least 20 minutes in a solution of one part of bleach and nine part of water.

If the place has become messy with the dead bird’s body fluid, blood, or flesh, sterilize it with the same bleach solution.

Proper Way of Burial Dead Pigeon

For the proper burial of a dead pigeon, follow the following steps:

Find a safe place for burial

Find a safe place to bury the dead bird so that your pet cats, dogs (if you have any), or any other scavenger cannot find and dig out the dead body. You can choose a bushy area in your backyard to bury the dead pigeon.

Dig a deep hole

dig a hole

Put the dead bird in a cardboard box. Dig a hole at least 2 feet deep and wide enough for the box.

Fill the hole with soil

Fill the hole with soil and dirt and cover that place with stones, gravel, blocks, or tiles so that any scavenger cannot dig out the deceased bird.

Should I Report a Dead Bird?

Suppose you suspect a dead bird carrying infectious diseases, something unusual, or large-scale dead birds. In that case, you should report it to the Department for the U.K.’s environment, food, and rural affairs (DEFRA). Their helpline is 03459 33 55 77 (Monday to Friday, from 8.30 am-5 pm) to get the necessary instructions for disposing of them safely.

In the USA, contact State wildlife agencies or State health department if you find a dead pigeon in your garden. If you find large-scale dead pigeons or something suspicious, call the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA). Their helpline: 1-866-487-3297

Frequently Asked Question

How do you save a bird that is nearly dying?

Take the bird to a local veterinarian if possible. For severely injured or sick birds in the U.K., you can contact the RSPCA on their helpline: 0300 1234 999. If they cannot attend your place in person, they will suggest what to do with a nearly dying bird.

Contact your State’s wildlife service or State health department in the USA.

Read: What to Do With an Injured Pigeon? A Complete Guide in 2022

Can you get sick from picking up a dead pigeon?

Usually, it is infrequent to get sick from a dead pigeon or any other bird. If a bird dies from bird flu, there is minimal risk of a human getting affected while handling it.

However, dead birds can carry harmful bacteria, fungi, viruses, mites, and insects which may cause some diseases to human beings if they are touched and handled barehanded.


Handling a dead pigeon is not that risky job. You just have to take protective measures while disposing of the dead bird or burying it under the ground.

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