Pigeon kings of Brooklyn

8 minutes

A tour of the Brooklyn rooftops where man’s best friend has a beak and wings

From above an abandoned tenement building in the Bushwick neighbourhood of Brooklyn, 2 Tone tries to lure in the idealised ‘true pigeon, that’ll never break your heart’. On the other side of town, Goodwin and Super 13 tend to their own diverse 300-bird collection. Each pigeon-keeper possesses an intimate knowledge of their flock, and shares the same goal of coaxing other keepers’ birds away. It’s a niche hobby in New York City, but it’s born of a human-animal bond that dates back thousands of years to when pigeons were first domesticated for their meat, before being bred as pets and message-carriers. A refreshingly unique rooftop-level take on an endlessly scrutinised city, Pigeon Kings of Brooklyn delivers an intimate look at the birds who make cities their home, and the people who continue to value this interspecies relationship.

Producer: Ram Devineni, Ashok Sinha, Martina Sönksen

Website: Narratively

Get Aeon straight
to your inbox
Join our newsletter Sign up
Follow us on

‘Every morning I look forward to seeing what’s in your email and there isn’t a day that goes by without reading or watching something you guys have published.

It’s like an oasis of sanity in a world gone mad.’

Jack D, USA, Friend of Aeon

‘Aeon is one of the liveliest, most wide-ranging and imaginative sources of good content on the web.

A fabulous resource for the intelligent and curious.’

Professor Barry C. Smith, University of London

‘Aeon is always providing great, thought-provoking content, and it would be a crime for me to not donate to a service that I use daily.’

Jarry A, Canada, Friend of Aeon

‘Aeon is hands down my favourite publication to write for. Deadlines long enough to do the work justice, the best editorial input I’ve encountered and compensation which is respectful of writers’ time.’

Antonia Malchik, essayist and editor

‘Aeon is my favourite online magazine.

I have found no other place that so regularly provides interesting, clear and informative articles across academic disciplines on topics that matter.’

Dr Robert J. Hartman, University of Gothenburg

Aeon is a registered charity committed to the spread of knowledge. Our mission is to create a sanctuary online for serious thinking.
But we can’t do it without you.

Aeon is a registered charity committed to the spread of knowledge and a cosmopolitan worldview.
But we can’t do it without you.

Cultures & Languages
Black Achilles

The Greeks didn’t have modern ideas of race. Did they see themselves as white, black – or as something else altogether?

Tim Whitmarsh

Stories & Literature
Communist robot dreams

Tech flourished in communist Bulgaria and so did a body of science fiction asking vital philosophical questions

Victor Petrov