What Is a Pigeon in Golf? (You Don't Want to Be One)

You might guess that a pigeon is the name of a golf score, since there is an avian theme to the names of golf scores (birdie, eagle). But no, pigeon is something very different. Pigeon is something no golfer wants to be called.

In golf, a pigeon is a golfer that other golfers expect to beat.

It's a derogatory term, in other words, which is why you never want to be the pigeon. "Who are we playing with today?" "Bob." "Is Bob any good?" "No, he's a pigeon."

The Golf Gambling Use of Pigeon

Aside from the general meaning of pigeon as a golfer others expect to beat, there's a meaning specific to gambling.

In the golf gambling world, a pigeon is a high-roller who thinks he's a lot better golfer than he actually is: An overconfident golfer with money just waiting to be taken.

Pigeons are the favorite prey of golf hustlers. A golf gambler who seeks out pigeons and is very good at spotting them is a "pigeon hunter."

And some pro golfers have started their careers as pigeon hunters on public golf course or at clubs, including Sam Snead and Al Besselink. Find yourself a pigeon, and there's money to be won.

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