Large Magical Beast
Hit Dice: 3d10+3 HD (19 hp)
Speed: 20 ft. (4 squares), fly 60 ft. (poor)
Armor Class: 14 (+2 dex, +3 natural -1 size), touch 11, flat-footed 12
Base Attack/Grapple: +3/+10
Attack: Bite +5 melee (1d6+2)
Full Attack: Bite +5 melee (1d6+2), 2 claws +0 melee (1d4+1)
Space/Reach: 10 ft./5 ft.
Special Attacks: -
Special Qualities: Ear to the cobblestones, homing, low-light vision, roofwalker, scent
Saves: Fort +4, Ref +5, Will +2
Abilities: Str 16, Dex 15, Con 13, Int 12, Wis 12, Cha 13
Skills: Gather Information +8*, Knowledge (local) +5, Listen +8, Spot +8, Survival +6
Feats: Alertness, Improved Initiative
Organization: Solitary, pair, or flock (3-40)
Challenge Rating: 2
Alignment: Always neutral
Advancement: 4-9 HD (Large)
Level Adjustment: +2 (cohort)
This grey-feathered bird is the size of a riding horse, with an iridescent green and purple sheen. It has a short beak below orange-red eyes that peer forth with sly curiosity.
Giant pigeons are intelligent, gregarious avians found in the largest and most ancient of cities where they first came to sentience. In parks, on rooftops, bridges and towers, all are locales where they tend to congregate. They are quick to gossip and slow to forget about even the most insignificant detail of the lives and stories they hear and witness. Many consider them enormous nuisances, but for every one that is forced away two take its place. Many however are talked into serving as transportation and communication, passing information from city to city. They take a mate for life once they reach maturity and will not willingly part from their company for extended periods, so often they are trained as a team.
Giant pigeons speak whatever languages are prevalent within their city, usually Common, with a gentle, cooing accent.
A giant pigeon while not naturally combative has an irritable streak and if sufficiently provoked will attack, and continues until their enemy is dead or driven far away. If the battle does not go in their favor however they are wont to flee.
Ear to the Cobblestones (Ex):
A giant pigeon may make a special knowledge check that acts as the Bardic Knowledge ability
with a bonus equal to its HD + its Intelligence modifier to see whether it knows some relevant information about local notable people, legendary items, or noteworthy places. (If the giant pigeon has 5 or more ranks in Knowledge (history), it gains a +2 bonus on this check.)
A giant pigeon on it's home planet always knows what direction it faces and the general distance and direction of any location it has visited in relation to it's current point.
A giant pigeon knows how to use the slopes to its advantage. It gains a +1 dodge bonus to AC against any opponent who is at a different elevation from it. They can also walk across a precarious surface more quickly than normal. They can move at their full speed without taking a -5 penalty on their Balance check.
*Giant pigeons gain a +4 bonus to Gather Information and Knowledge (local) checks.
Training A Giant Pigeon
Although intelligent, a giant pigeon requires training before it can bear a rider in combat. To be trained, a giant pigeon must have a friendly attitude toward the trainer (this can be achieved through a successful Diplomacy check). Training a friendly giant pigeon requires four weeks of work and a DC 20 Handle Animal check. Riding a giant pigeon requires an exotic saddle. A giant pigeon can fight while carrying a rider, but the rider cannot also attack unless he or she succeeds on a Ride check.
Giant pigeon eggs are worth 1,000 gp apiece on the open market, while chicks are worth 2,000 gp each. Professional trainers charge 1,000 gp to rear or train a giant pigeon.
A light load for a giant pigeon is up to 152 pounds; a medium load, 153–306 pounds; and a heavy load, 307–460 pounds.