Paloma mensajera (Columba livia domestica)
The homing pigeon is a variety of domestic pigeon (Columba livia domestica) derived from the rock pigeon, selectively bred for its ability to find its way home over extremely long distances. The wild rock pigeon has an innate homing ability, meaning that it will generally return to its nest, (it is believed) using magnetoreception. This made it relatively easy to breed from the birds that repeatedly found their way home over long distances. Flights as long as 1,800 km (1,100 miles) have been recorded by birds in competitive pigeon racing. Their average flying speed over moderate 640 km (400 miles) distances is around 80 km/h (50 miles per hour) but speeds of up to 140 km/h (90 miles per hour) have been observed in top racers for short distances.
Because of this skill, homing pigeons were used to carry messages as messenger pigeons. They are usually referred to as "pigeon post" or "war pigeon" during wars.
Homing pigeons are often incorrectly categorized as carrier pigeons, a breed of fancy pigeons selectively-bred for its distinctively rounded hard wattle.