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PIGEON TOWERS

 PIGEON TOWERS

          One of the most amazing monuments which are scattered on the suburbs of Isfahan are pigeon towers. There were more than 14000 pigeon towers on the plain of Isfahan, especially on the east and west of the city. Unfortunately a large number of these towers were destroyed, and vanished.

Birds tower2.JPG

 Isfahan’s expansion, conversion of different villages to a part and section of the new city negligence of people and related authorities have been some of the main reasons. Each pigeon tower is about 10 to 14 meters high. Although outer parts of pigeon towers have similar shapes, but each pigeon tower shows its own characteristics.

Bird tower-Atashgah.jpg

One of the famous travelers who visited Isfahan in 14th century has written about these towers which were visited in villages, agricultural plains and orchards. There are hundreds of nesting boxes inside the tower, artistically constructed by mud bricks. Hundreds of wild pigeon prepared their nests in these nesting boxes. Inner part of the tower takes necessary day light or sunlight, and pigeons could fly comfortably inside the tower, their guano was collected in the tower. Entrance doors of towers were closed by mud and seeds. Every year the entrance door of each tower was opened and all gathered pigeon’s guano which were collected like a small hill in the inner environ of the tower were removed to the farms. Guano was mixed with soft and rich argil soil and changed to a very strong and rich fertilizer. Isfahan melons and water melons are very popular all over Iran. The mentioned fertilizer was used for growing delicious melons. In 17th century, foreign travelers who visited Isfahan have mentioned impotence of pigeon towers and melon farms.

Birds tower1.JPG

All nesting boxes, which were made of sun dried mud bricks, were structured in such a way that prevented snakes from getting in nests, in order to eat pigeon eggs and small birds.

Outer shapes of towers were beautifully vaulted and domed. At the present time Isfahan Municipality has restored some of these pigeon towers which are located within urban limits. We would like to recommend visitors to visit few of these interesting monuments.      

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