Forgot your password?

Choose a newsletter

Premium access provided by ENSTA

Your premium access provided by ENSTA

Enter your email to begin

Premium access granted to you by Expatica

You've been given FREE premium access to Worldcrunch

Enter your email to begin


In Paris, A New Breed Of Urban Outlaw: Pigeon Feeders

Feeding pigeons is forbidden by the French law, and can lead to fines of up to 450 euros. But that doesn’t stop the army of feeders in Paris from risking it all with their bags of illicit bread crumbs. Now the mess has arrived on the Internet.

Article illustrative image Partner logo Some 80,000 pigeons are said to plague the French capital


PARIS - It’s late at night, in a deserted Parisian neighborhood. A few furtive silhouettes can be seen in the distance, making strange movements, working hastily. They know what they are doing is forbidden by the law. They know they could get caught. But they are on a mission: the benevolent, yet criminal mission of feeding pigeons.

This new class of urban delinquents, called nourrisseurs (feeders), is starting to seriously annoy a majority of Parisians, who can’t help but see the gray city doves as mere flying rats. "They think they’re doing a good deed, but feeders are increasing pigeon overcrowding […] which leads to large concentrated quantities of feces and can damage public and private goods," says a Paris City Hall spokesperson.

The sometimes costly and time-consuming activity is also reprehensible: feeding pigeons is forbidden by the French law and can lead to fines for bird-lovers of up to 450 euros. But that doesn’t stop the flying rodent rescuers –mostly women over 60, although they are a very mixed bunch —from saving up their bread crumbs.

The issue is now being addressed in public hearings, and has led to innumerable studies, and the battle has recently reached a new level, as Internet users joined the fight: groups supporting – or in favor of eradicating — the members of the Columbidae family flourish all over Facebook. And we all know that's a public square where you can be hit by other kinds of droppings.

Read the full story in French by Caroline Sallé

Photo – AnnieGreenSprings

*Newsbites are digest items, not direct translations


Sign up for our weekly Global Life newsletter now

Worldcrunch brings top stories from the world's best news sources into English for the first time.

- Find out how we work
- Stay connected with our newsletter
- Try premium access for just $0.99

Want to get in touch or report a bug? Find us at

Load More Stories

Unlimited access to exclusive journalism, the best world news source across all your devices

Subscribe Now Photo of Worldcrunch on different devices

Your premium access to Worldcrunch is provided by

University of Central Lancashire

Please register to begin

By registering you agree to our terms of service and privacy policy.