SOLEDAD, Calif. (KION) SPCA Monterey County said it is caring for nine living fantail pigeons found abandoned along Highway 156 in Soledad, and now officers are looking for information about who abandoned them.
The SPCA said they were found on the highway about three miles off Metz Road on Tuesday. The person who found the pigeons brought them to the Los Coches Animal Hospital before they were transferred to the SPCA Wildlife Center.
Ten of the birds brought in were living, but the agency said they all showed signs of neglect. The SPCA said they were dirty, covered in feces and suffering from feather mites.
One pigeon was hit by a car and injured before it was rescued, and staff members said they needed to humanely euthanize it to end its suffering. Another bird is sick and undergoing treatment. In addition to the living birds, humane officers found a bag full of dead birds, and they said it appears that an unknown number of birds had been hit by cars and killed before they were rescued.
A spokesperson for the agency said fantail pigeons are a popular breed known for their fan-shaped tails, and their lifespan is about 10 to 20 years.
The SPCA is asking anyone with information or anyone who can identify the pigeons to call them at 831-373-2631. The owners could face charges that include permitting animals to go without care; animal cruelty; deprivation of food, water and shelter and abandonment.
The agency is reminding pet owners that if they can no longer care for their pets, they can be surrendered to the SPCA or another local rescue group.