Ectopistes migratorius 

The Passenger Pigeon









          The passenger pigeon (Ectopistes migratorius) got its nutrients from a variety of sources.  They were for the most part foragers, which means they picked items from the nearby substrate or vegetation.  Their diets consisted mainly of beechnuts, acorns, chestnuts, grain, and grass seed.  Later in the summer they would feed on berries and fleshy fruits.  They also consumed insects, earthworms, and other invertebrates.  The passenger pigeon always chose areas to nest based on the available food supply.  Flocks would occasionally descend on newly seeded crop fields and eat all of the seeds.  This type of event was the reason for the invention of the seed drill.  Farmers would use the seed drill to plant the seeds below the surface so the pigeons couldnít find and eat them.  Salt was an important mineral in the passenger pigeonís diet because it aided in the production of a quality egg.  Getting the appropriate nutrition was very important for the passenger pigeon to sustain their energy during long flights.  







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