Japanese 'Dove-Defector' Flies to Russia

YUZHNO-SAKHALINSK.April 3. KAZINFORM Russian ornithologists are tending to a trained dove that strayed away from a designated route during a competition in Japan and flew to the Russian island of Kunashir in the Kurils chain. Kazinform refers to RIA Novosti.

"A carrier dove marked with colored Japanese ID rings has been found by residents of Yuzno-Kurilsk [on Kunashir]," an official from the Kurilsky wild game park told RIA Novosti on Tuesday.

"Ornithologists inspected the bird and called the owner whose phone number was engraved on the rings," the official said.

The owner told the Russian scientists that the dove was released on March 24 near the city of Mutsu in the Aomori prefecture on the island of Honshu during a competition.

The bird was supposed to fly to a destination in the neighboring Miyagi prefecture, which is located 300 kilometers (186 miles) to the south of the release point. However, the dove made a 180-degree turn after the release and ended up on the Kunashir Island four days later, flying about 480 km (about 300 miles).

"The bird was exhausted upon the arrival and it may take a while until it is ready for a flight back home," the Kurilsky park official said. "The dove has to gain strength and eat a lot of food to endure such a long trip."


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