I was staying on a camp site at Freshwater East, Pembrokeshire, in early June this year.
The Ash trees were just coming into leaf and those around us had most of the new growth eaten off. The damage was caused by wood pigeons, I watched them eating the new shoots.
I have never seen this behaviour before and I've spent a lot of time with Ash trees and pigeons.
Is this behaviour common anywhere else?
Woodpigeons eat a wide variety of plant material not just seeds. Buds, new leaves and shoots are definitely on the menu and they will eat quite a lot. Most of the trees regenerate quickly though so this damage shouldn't be that obvious in a few weeks time.
A friend has a small orchard of some rarer varieties of fruit trees and the weight of Wood Pigeons on the thin branches has broken some off,luckily he is also a keen birder so they are quite safe even if they do some damage.
I believe they are particularly fond of the new growth on Beech trees.