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animal lover animal lover is offline
Posted 3rd January 2005, 09:43 AM
Join Date: Mar 2002
Location: NJ
Posts: 65

Food stuck in beak/please help


Please help, I have a pigeon that has been coming into my yard for the past three days, that appears to have food still remaining in his beak, as if it is stuck there. He goes for water frequently (I'm assuming to try and dislodge the food) and he attempts to eat, but I'm not sure if he is getting anything to go down. He still fly\ies very well and unfortunately will not allow me to get close enough to try and catch him to help. Any advice would be greatly appreciated. Thank you.
Animal Lover


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AZWhitefeather AZWhitefeather is offline
Posted 3rd January 2005, 09:56 AM
Join Date: Oct 2002
Location: Mesa, AZ USA
Posts: 7,329
If you are successful in catching him, please follow these initial steps.

* * *
It is vital to stabilize an ill or injured pigeon or dove as soon as possible after rescue. Specific steps should be taken.

HEAT
A bird must gradually be warmed to normal body temperature and be responsive (able to swallow). It is not unusual for a baby bird presented for rehabilitation to be very cold.
Unless there is a critical situation (severe bleeding) all birds should be covered and placed on a heat source* (see below) for at least 20-30 minutes to bring the body temperature back to normal. Allow the bird to stabilize in a quite, dark, warm area.

Give the bird a quick cursory examination. While the bird is warming, take the opportunity to warm the ringers solution** (see below) and prepare any other items you may need to care for the bird.

A COLD BIRD SHOULD NEVER BE GIVEN FLUID OR FOOD, PERIOD!!

HYDRATION
Fluids should be given after, and ONLY AFTER, the bird has been warmed, examined for any injuries & a determination is made as to the severity of his dehydration.

Description and degree, of hydrated and dehydrated birds
A well hydrated bird will be very alert, have elastic skin, bright eyes, moise, plump membrane inside the mouth and well formed moist droppings.

A moderately dehydrated bird will be less than fully alert, have dry, flaky skin, dull eyes, non-formed droppings and have a sticky membrane in the mouth.

A severely dehydrated bird will be lethargic or unconscious, the skin will 'tent' when slightly pinched, have sunken eyes, dry or absent droppings and have dry membrane in the mouth.

Depending on the cause and degree of dehydration, reversing this condition can take up to 24 hours. If the bird is alert, he may be rehydrated by mouth by using an eye dropper and putting drops along his beak every few minutes.
(This would be the safest and easiest method for beginners).

If the bird is not swallowing on his own or fully alert, he must be given fluids under the skin (sub-Q method.)
WARNING!! Be certain you learn how to do this before you try for the first time as all birds have extensive air sacs throughout their body that should not be punctured. A needle introduced in the wrong place may paralyze the legs.

*Heat source suggestions:
Heating pad, set on low
Hot water bottle
Low wattage lamp, directing the light into the cage.

Emergency heat source substitute:
Fill an old sock about 2/3 full of rice. Microwave the sock for a few seconds. Making sure it isn't too hot, place it around the bird.

**Ringers solution substitute:
Small amount: Add to a cup of water a pinch of salt & sugar, mix well. Use this solution to rehydrate by mouth.

I'm hoping this invaluable information will help you help our fine feathered friends in need.

Cindy

* * * *

Please keep us posted.

Cindy
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A Pigeon's Dream

http://www.pigeonangels.com

As we fly,
Let us be safe from the predators that share the sky.

If we become ill or injured in any way,
Let us find safety where we are welcome to stay.

Cynthia Boyce

Last edited by AZWhitefeather; 3rd January 2005 at 10:06 AM.
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animal lover animal lover is offline
Posted 3rd January 2005, 10:07 AM
Join Date: Mar 2002
Location: NJ
Posts: 65
Thanks AZ,
I'm going to try my best to help this little guy. I was just outside, and from what I can see of his beak, it definitely appears that food will go not down. I'll keep you posted.
Animal Lover
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TAWhatley TAWhatley is offline
Posted 3rd January 2005, 10:17 AM
Join Date: Mar 2001
Location: Lake Forest, CA, USA
Age: 66
Posts: 21,012
Good luck on catching the bird. It may be canker growths that you are seeing. If that is the case, the bird definitely needs to be caught and started on canker medication right away. Please keep us posted

Terry
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Feefo Feefo is offline
Posted 3rd January 2005, 10:23 AM
Join Date: Feb 2002
Country: United Kingdom
Location: UK
Posts: 11,321
Hi Animal Lover,

When a pigeon looks as if its beak is jammed open by uneaten food, or when it manages to get food in its beak and can't swallow it then the most likely cause is that it is suffering from canker. Unless the canker is treated then it will eventually obstruct the throat or trachea, so the pigeon needs to be caught.

I have always found pigeons with canker very difficult to catch by hand. Mary's trap might help you. This link shows her photo album with basket trap:http://community.webshots.com/album/131657719SpwMfd . I hope it works.

If you catch the pigeon check the throat. Canker will show up as caseous yellow or brown lesions in the throat and mouth area. There may also be thick saliva. The lesions must not be removed because that could cause a haemmorhage. The pigeon will have to be hand fed or gavage fed with liquid nutrition for 4 or 5 days, and treated with 10 mg Carnidazole (Spartrix) a day for three days. Some of us treat with Metronidazole (Flagyl) at the same time. After treatment the lesions usually become detached on their own and are swallowed by the bird.

Please keep us updated and good luck with catching the pigeon.

Cynthia

Last edited by Feefo; 3rd January 2005 at 10:25 AM.
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TerriB TerriB is offline
Posted 3rd January 2005, 10:39 AM
Join Date: Nov 2003
Location: Kent, WA, USA
Posts: 4,724
Since the bird is too fast to catch by hand but comfortable with your yard as a feeding area, you might try a box trap: http://www.racingbirds.com/ptrap.html

Good luck!
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animal lover animal lover is offline
Posted 3rd January 2005, 10:57 AM
Join Date: Mar 2002
Location: NJ
Posts: 65
Thanks everyone! I keep going outside to check on him/her? and he leaves with the other birds everytime they take off. I'm going to the links that you provided me with, and hopefully I will be able to catch him. I swear this bird knows what I'm up to! I've also printed out the instructions for medication, etc. that you had posted. I really appreciate the help. I'll keep you posted. Thanks again.
Animal Lover
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AZWhitefeather AZWhitefeather is offline
Posted 3rd January 2005, 12:38 PM
Join Date: Oct 2002
Location: Mesa, AZ USA
Posts: 7,329
When one of my backyard buddies (feral flock) becomes grounded due to illness or injury, they usually appear at my back door so I can spot them easily. However, sometimes they will find refuge under our patio furniture, in a corner, a bush, anywhere they feel safe.
I would suggest checking all the nooks & crannies when you are searching for the little guy.

Dusk is also good time to check the area. All the pijjies should be nestled in for the night, high above the ground. Their vision is next to nil at that time so if they are grounded, most likely that is where they will stay.

I hope you are able to rescue the little sweetie.

Cindy
__________________
A Pigeon's Dream

http://www.pigeonangels.com

As we fly,
Let us be safe from the predators that share the sky.

If we become ill or injured in any way,
Let us find safety where we are welcome to stay.

Cynthia Boyce
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animal lover animal lover is offline
Posted 4th January 2005, 06:23 AM
Join Date: Mar 2002
Location: NJ
Posts: 65
Hi everyone,
So far this morning, I still haven't seen him. I tried up until dusk last night to catch him, but am sorry to say that I was unsuccessful. I even had several of my neighbors who are also bird lovers trying to help, but it's like he knew what we were trying to do. I intend to keep looking and will let you all know if I find him again. I did try your suggestions AZ, which were very good ones, but he doesn't stay on the ground for long. He attempts to eat and then flies away. Let's hope for the best. thank you all once again for your help and your concern. I appreciate it.
Animal Lover
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AZWhitefeather AZWhitefeather is offline
Posted 4th January 2005, 06:44 AM
Join Date: Oct 2002
Location: Mesa, AZ USA
Posts: 7,329

We appreciate the update, thanks


Unfortunately, when a pij becomes ill it seems their flying ability is the last to be impaired.

In addition to your outstanding efforts, I would like to send a "Thank You" to your neighbors who have been so kind as to help in the rescue of this little one.

Keep us posted.

Cindy
__________________
A Pigeon's Dream

http://www.pigeonangels.com

As we fly,
Let us be safe from the predators that share the sky.

If we become ill or injured in any way,
Let us find safety where we are welcome to stay.

Cynthia Boyce
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Reti Reti is offline
Posted 4th January 2005, 07:00 AM
Join Date: Jul 2003
Country: United States
Location: Miami,Fl
Age: 51
Posts: 9,867
Hope you are more successful today.
Thank you and your neighbors for trying.

Reti
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animal lover animal lover is offline
Posted 5th January 2005, 10:15 AM
Join Date: Mar 2002
Location: NJ
Posts: 65
Hi everyone,
Well I can't say for sure, but a pigeon came here this morning that had identical markings to the one with the food stuck in his beak. The original bird even had some weird looking feathers on the left side of the beak (from what appeared to be dried food) and the bird that was here earlier had it as well! I don't quite know what to make of this, but it sure looks like the same bird. I'm keeping my fingers crossed. Well now that my neighborhood has gotten involved, they seem to have decided that I'm the person to bring injured birds to So you may see me on here alot more! Thanks again. You're all a really great group of people. If only their were alot more of you in this world. Take care.
Animal Lover
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AZWhitefeather AZWhitefeather is offline
Posted 5th January 2005, 10:24 AM
Join Date: Oct 2002
Location: Mesa, AZ USA
Posts: 7,329
That little guy will most likely stay close to your place.
Even though they really don't want to be rescued, they seem to have a 'sense' about who will be kind to them when they decide help is needed.

By all means, post away if you have any questions or concerns. We will assist you as best we can.

Your continued updates are most welcome.

Cindy
__________________
A Pigeon's Dream

http://www.pigeonangels.com

As we fly,
Let us be safe from the predators that share the sky.

If we become ill or injured in any way,
Let us find safety where we are welcome to stay.

Cynthia Boyce
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baby bird, feral flock, heating pad, injured bird, injured birds, injured pigeon

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