Tuesday, October 9, 2007


Have you ever wanted to get REALLY close to a lot of pigeons? In the Piazza San Marco in Venice you can buy a bag of pigeon feed, pour some in your hand, and the pigeons will immediately flock to you. If you do not put the feed on the ground they will fly up and perch themselves on any part of your body that they can hang on to and wait for you to feed them. Though this is a lot of fun for kids and adults, the massive number of pigeons in such a confined area poses a problem for the surrounding architecture. The birds build nests in chimneys, attics, and any other kind of cool, dark hiding spot. This can be a major headache for homeowners. The excrement they leave behind can also be a problem. Its acidic nature reacts with the calcium in Carrara and Travertine marbles, used in much of the sculptures and carvings, slowly dissolving the stone. Be sure to bring some wet wipes.

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