Australia to kill pigeon that crossed Pacific from Oregon

Australia to kill pigeon that crossed Pacific from Oregon
In this image made from video, a racing pigeon sits on a rooftop Wednesday, Jan. 13, 2021, in Melbourne, Australia, The racing pigeon, first spotted in late Dec. 2020, appears to have made an extraordinary 13,000-kilometer (8,000-mile) Pacific Ocean crossing from the United States to Australia. Experts suspect the pigeon named Joe, after the U.S. president-elect, hitched a ride on a cargo ship to cross the Pacific. (Channel 9 via AP) (Source: AP)

CANBERRA, Australia (AP) - A racing pigeon has survived an extraordinary 8,000-mile Pacific Ocean crossing from the United States to find a new home in Australia. Now authorities consider the bird a quarantine risk and plan to kill it.

Kevin Celli-Bird says he discovered the exhausted bird that arrived in his Melbourne backyard in December had disappeared from a race in Oregon two months earlier. Experts suspect the pigeon, named Joe after the president-elect, hitched a ride on a cargo ship.

Joe’s feat has attracted the attention of Australian media but also of the notoriously strict quarantine authorities.

Celli-Bird says they asked him to catch the bird because they considered it a disease risk. He says the American Racing Pigeon Union confirmed it was registered to an owner in Montgomery, Alabama.

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