Wood pigeon (Columba polumbus)
Before we delve into any level of detail regarding Britain’s most preeminent pigeon, let us begin by asking a contentious question: should “wood” and “pigeon” be separate, as two words, or together, as one?
Let’s approach this with reason, and look for authority as guidance; and what better example should we discover than that of both RSPB and BTO. Yes, a quick search in Google yields the following answer, which, interestingly, is taken from Wikipedia, whose usage separates the two words.
But take a look at RSPB and BTO, both of which organisations use “Woodpigeon” as the standard term. This is very interesting, because in fact there’s a clear trend towards the use of “Wood pigeon” (separate), rather than “Woodpigeon” (together), which is in decline. Could this be the mighty power of Google influencing our language? Quite possibly, and I shall let you decide whether or not that is the case. But for now, we shall go with the general trend, and stick with “Wood pigeon”, separated. Preemptive apologies for this!
Increased trend in the use of “Wood pigeon” since 2008
As to your thoughts on this, we would love to know…