(pigeon house)

in Tamariz

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To speak of Tierra de Campos is as much as to speak of pigeon houses, and Tamariz, halfway between Rioseco and Villalón, bordered in addition by the Sequillo river, is in the heart of Campos.

The pigeon house is the more representative popular building of this region. It would be necessary to add, of earth, because the authentic pigeon house must be made of earth; and it is a pity that their renters, the doves, cannot pronounce in this respect.

There are not left too many pigeon houses in Tamariz, but there are some interesting ones. This which we choose is located in the place of the Mouths (judging by the number of the rabbits abound much) or of the Serna, that is to say, in the right border of the Sequillo, between the river and the highway that takes to Rioseco, at the south of the town. It is not the most spectacular, nor the greatest, but perhaps it is one of the best conserved of the province. It is round, with inner patio, and has dimensions of 12.50 m. of outer diameter, and 4.25  the interior patio. Its outer height is 6.50 m.


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This image corresponds to another pigeon house, already disappeared, that was very next to the one that occupies to us.
At the bottom is seen the tower of the church of San Juan.


It is made up of three concentric circular rings, made with earth solely tamped, that is to say, "tapial", with a thickness of about 60 cm., in which the nidales were opened after their erection, opening them in quarter of sphere.

Externally it is, unlike the squares with staggered covers, perhaps the most sober type. Only the cylindrical drum, a closing of packsaddle with roofing tile and under him a plaster band, to avoid the entering of rodents.

Some figures, made with mud and brick, are distributed on the small horse of the packsaddle, perhaps to avoid that the doves confused and went to stop to another pigeon house.

The door, 1.73 m. of height, has a curious security lock.

The other two rings, has, as it is usual, the doors faced the outside, but without leaves; only the rectangular hollow, with wood loading bases.

The ground of the patio is paved with mud floor tiles of 26 x 13 cm., with inclination towards the water-drainage, that leaves towards the outside by means of a conduit with two registries.

The cover is composed by two staggered trunkated cone covers. Most outer, and   therefore highest, it does not begin with the coronation of the last ring, but more down, since the closing with packsaddle of this one serves as "guardaviento" or protection to the assembly.

The inner cover finishes in eaves formed by a horizontal table on square "canecillos". The structure of both is with "parecillos" of 10 x   9 cm. of section, separated in its zone mediates about 50 cm. Over them, table, in which leans the curved roofing tile.

There are two types of entrances of doves. Three hollows opened in the patio, like a cover in arc of average point, with borders of plaster. The others are located on the upper deck and comes to be like little houses or small windows to two waters, with the lateral wood closings, in which it opens the entrance hollows, instead of in the front, to avoid the direct wind.

We have already indicated that the "nidales" are of the type of quarter of sphere, excavated in the tapial. In the outer ring are located nine lines of these, eight in both faces of the medium wall and six in the interior one. Altogether they add 1440 nidales, average amount of a not too numerous pigeon house.

Author of the text: Carlos Carricajo Carbajo