Tuesday, 28 January 2014

Phantassie Doocot

Pigeons have been kept in Scotland since the Middle Ages. Pigeon-houses or doocots as they are called in Scotland provided a supply of fresh meat during the winter. Over 500 birds nested in this unusual beehive shaped doocot. The tender young pigeons or squabs were a delicacy at Phantassie House. Their feathers were used in cushions and pillows and their droppings were used as a fertilizer or in the tanning or dying processes.

A string course prevented rats from gaining entry. The pigeons sunned themselves on the south-facing horseshoe-shaped roof of Phantassie Doocot.