Bird Thugs Attack Pope's 'Peace Doves'

Seagull, crow apparently didn't get the peace memo

By Polly Davis Doig,  Newser Staff

Posted Jan 26, 2014 10:59 AM CST

(Newser) – It was supposed to be a nice moment: Pope Francis, in the course of calling for calm in the Ukraine today, had a couple of little kids release two doves over St. Peter's Square in a gesture of peace. But apparently in the animal world, as in the human world, we can't have nice moments: As tens of thousands of the faithful watched the birds take flight, a black crow and a seagull attacked the purportedly peaceful pair, with one losing some feathers and the other getting pecked repeatedly. As the AP notes, "It was not clear what happened to the doves as they flew off."

A dove which was freed by children flanked by Pope Francis during the Angelus prayer, is attacked by a black crow in St. Peter's Square, at the Vatican, Sunday, Jan. 26, 2014.
A dove which was freed by children flanked by Pope Francis during the Angelus prayer, is attacked by a black crow in St. Peter's Square, at the Vatican, Sunday, Jan. 26, 2014.   (AP Photo/Gregorio Borgia)
A dove which was freed by children flanked by Pope Francis during the Angelus prayer, is attacked by a seagull in St. Peter's Square, at the Vatican, Sunday, Jan. 26, 2014.
A dove which was freed by children flanked by Pope Francis during the Angelus prayer, is attacked by a seagull in St. Peter's Square, at the Vatican, Sunday, Jan. 26, 2014.   (AP Photo/Gregorio Borgia)
A dove which was freed by children flanked by Pope Francis during the Angelus prayer, is attacked by a seagull in St. Peter's Square, at the Vatican, Sunday, Jan. 26, 2014.
A dove which was freed by children flanked by Pope Francis during the Angelus prayer, is attacked by a seagull in St. Peter's Square, at the Vatican, Sunday, Jan. 26, 2014.   (AP Photo/Gregorio Borgia)
A dove which was freed by children flanked by Pope Francis during the Angelus prayer, is chased by a black crow in St. Peter's Square, at the Vatican, Sunday, Jan. 26, 2014.
A dove which was freed by children flanked by Pope Francis during the Angelus prayer, is chased by a black crow in St. Peter's Square, at the Vatican, Sunday, Jan. 26, 2014.   (AP Photo/Gregorio Borgia)
A dove which was freed by children flanked by Pope Francis during the Angelus prayer, is chased by a black crow in St. Peter's Square, at the Vatican, Sunday, Jan. 26, 2014.
A dove which was freed by children flanked by Pope Francis during the Angelus prayer, is chased by a black crow in St. Peter's Square, at the Vatican, Sunday, Jan. 26, 2014.   (AP Photo/Gregorio Borgia)
Pope Francis delivers his message during the Angelus prayer he celebrated from the window of his studio overlooking St. Peter's Square, at the Vatican, Sunday, Jan. 26, 2014.
Pope Francis delivers his message during the Angelus prayer he celebrated from the window of his studio overlooking St. Peter's Square, at the Vatican, Sunday, Jan. 26, 2014.   (AP Photo/Gregorio Borgia)
Pope Francis, flanked by two children, waves from the window of his studio overlooking St. Peter's Square at the Vatican, to the crowd, Sunday, Jan. 26, 2014.
Pope Francis, flanked by two children, waves from the window of his studio overlooking St. Peter's Square at the Vatican, to the crowd, Sunday, Jan. 26, 2014.   (AP Photo/L'Osservatore Romano, ho)
Pope Francis looks at two children as they free doves during the Angelus prayer he celebrated from the window of his studio overlooking St. Peter's Square, at the Vatican, Sunday, Jan. 26, 2014.
Pope Francis looks at two children as they free doves during the Angelus prayer he celebrated from the window of his studio overlooking St. Peter's Square, at the Vatican, Sunday, Jan. 26, 2014.   (AP Photo/Gregorio Borgia)
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