Historic Fulfillment Services: Carrier Pigeons

Carrier Pigeons, also known as “Homing Pigeons,” have been bred selectively to become nature’s postal service in times of need. This domesticated pigeon is able to find its way home over long distances. In fact, the birds have been known to fly distances as long as 1,800Km at a rate of up to 140Km/hr. That is pretty incredible, and it is enough to earn these intrepid flappers a spot in our series on the world’s most awesome fulfillment services. If you missed the first part of our series, covering the Pony Express, you can find it here.

The use of homing pigeons dates back as far as 3000 years, when they were used to announce the winners of the ancient Olympic games. The use of pigeons as messenger service has been document in ancient Baghdad as well as by Gengis Khan. In the 1100s, a regular pigeon service existed between Baghdad and Syria. In the 1800s, the Reuters Press Agency used a fleet of pigeons to deliver news and stock prices. The birds have played a well-documented role as wartime messengers as well.

How do they do it? Check out this video from National Geographic to learn more:


Pretty impressive, right? In an evolutionary sense, yes. But, we would put our fulfillment service to the test against pigeons any day of the week. And, we have only been at it for a century – pigeons took millions of years to get as good as they are. If you’re looking for an outsourced fulfillment service that won’t foul things up, give us a call today!