Feral pigeons must be familiar to almost everyone. Typically they are similar to wild rock pigeons in general shape but often have proportionally narrower bodies, longer tails, broader bills and larger ceres. They differ in colour from the blue rock pigeons. Chequer is still the commonest colour in feral pigeons, though the original blue is probably second common.

  • Blue is the natural colour of the rock dove.
  • General plumage is blue-grey, usually pale blue-grey on wings.
  • Two conspicuous black bars across the wing, and a broad black bar at the end of the tail.
  • Rump usually white ore pale grey, but often same grey as rest of plumage.
  • Neck and upper breast iridescent green and purple.
  • Blue chequer is as in blue, but the wing bars are wider and the rest of the wing feathers with black markings, giving a spotted effect.
  • Much variation from lightly spotted birds to dark blue chequers in which the closed wing appears black and the rest of the plumage is also darker. But even in the darkest chequer the tail colour is always blue with the black bar visible at the end. This distinguishes dark chequers from real black (spread) pigeons in which the rump and tail is also solid black.

Other colours like red, black, grizzle, pied and white also often occur, but the ratio of colours differs in each population (town).