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Flyaway Flyaway is offline
Posted 11th May 2007, 10:30 AM
Join Date: May 2007
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Help needed with baby rescue pigeon


Hi all

Today my partner found a baby pigeon on a grassy stretch near a main road. There were a couple of dead older/adult pigeons nearby. Anyway he brought the little one home with him.

From photos I've checked out online I'm sguessing this baby is about 3 weeks old (can't be sure though since I'm no expert). He has a few of the little yellow feathers on his head. He can stretch and flap his wings OK but can't fly.

The trouble is we've now had him (I say "him" but I've no idea whether he's male or female) for around 6 hours and we can't get him to eat or drink anything. Is this normal? We've tried moistened EMP bird rearing food, very soft scrambled egg mushed up with digestive biscuit, scrambled egg by itself, water. Nothing. Is this the right food? Should we just leave him and try again in a few hours? Should we be opening his mouth and pushing the food in ?

Other problem is his left eye. It's all covered in what looks like a crust of some sort. The other eye is fine. I've tried bathing it to try to clean it off but the gunk won't come off. You can't see the eye at all. In fact I've no idea if there is one. Doesn't seem to bother him though and he doesn't squeak when I'm bathing it - although he has been squeaking quite a bit on and off but that's usually been when we've left him to sleep by himself.

Finally he's permanently standing up. I thought baby birds nuzzled down into their nest but this one stands up even when he's sleeping.

Anyone point me in the right direction ? Tell me what we should be doing ?

Thanks.
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flitsnowzoom flitsnowzoom is offline
Posted 11th May 2007, 10:56 AM
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Hi and welcome to Pigeon-talk. Thanks so much for rescuing this baby. Please make sure you keep him safe and sound while he finishes growing and gets over whatever ails him. There is lots of advice in this site on what to do's to start on keeping the pidgie safe and comfy. Just use the handy dandy search drop-down to find some of those threads.
Please make sure he has fresh water to drink. He was at the age where he was starting to learn to eat so you may have to do some tutoring.

There will be lots of experts coming on over the next several hours to help you with advice and someone may actually live close enough to take over the bird's care if you need help. So, what they usually want to know is "can you post a picture" of the bird and its eye and "where do you live" (not the details but city and state or if you're in the UK (which sounds like you may be since you referred to a digestive biscuit, not a common term in the US or Canada (I think)), just the city. There are members here from all over the world!
So be prepared for lots of great advice and help! You came to the right place and thanks again for rescuing this baby.
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Feefo Feefo is offline
Posted 11th May 2007, 12:01 PM
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Hello, and welcome. I also got the impression that you were in the UK.

This is a link to information on feeding baby pigeons. They don't gape so you will have to open his mouth and put the food in. There are links on that page to feeding methods.

http://www.pigeon-aid.pigeon.net/feeding.htm
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...while all the time your dear full-throated pigeons will be heard, and the turtledove high in the elm will never bring her cooing to an end. (Virgil)

Last edited by Feefo; 11th May 2007 at 12:03 PM..
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Flyaway Flyaway is offline
Posted 11th May 2007, 02:46 PM
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Posts: 18
Hi Flitsnowzoom and cyro51

Thankyou both for responding.

Here is a pic of the pigeons eye (it was the right one not the left as I originally said:




I'm sorry if the photo's too big for this forum. It's taken me ages to actually upload it and then try and resize it - lol I'm hopeless with cameras and photos at the best of times!

The good news is that I managed to get him to drink something earlier. Still haven't managed to get any food down him but I'll try and get his mouth open and get the food in somehow (thanks for the link). Since he's guzzled his water he's stopped squeaking and is now fast asleep - actually snuggled down as opposed to standing upright with his one good eye closed.

I've decided to take him to the vet next week to take a look at his eye and give him the once over - just to be on the safe side. I know of a vetinary practice that specialises in aquatic, avian and small animals. That eye's really bothering me and I thought the other eye was looking a bit red too just round the lower rim.

You are both correct - I am in the UK. England, Manchester to be precise.
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pdpbison pdpbison is offline
Posted 11th May 2007, 02:51 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Flyaway View Post
Hi all

Today my partner found a baby pigeon on a grassy stretch near a main road. There were a couple of dead older/adult pigeons nearby. Anyway he brought the little one home with him.

From photos I've checked out online I'm sguessing this baby is about 3 weeks old (can't be sure though since I'm no expert). He has a few of the little yellow feathers on his head. He can stretch and flap his wings OK but can't fly.

Hi flyaway,


Yes, depending on species, he will not be flying untill developed enough, and for regular 'Pigeons' this is around four and a half weeks or a little more...but this does not mean they 'then' are flying 'as' adults, but merely that they are flying short forays of some yards merely.



Quote:
The trouble is we've now had him (I say "him" but I've no idea whether he's male or female) for around 6 hours and we can't get him to eat or drink anything. Is this normal?

Yes...he is used to being fed and watered by his parents, in their manner of doing so.

You are not his parents, or, you are not a Pigeon who is offering to fill in and feed and water him in Pigeon-ways of it, and the gestures you may make, and the whole paralinguistic of it all, and the food and water 'as' itself, make no sense to him in the terms he is used to...for him to even recognise your intentions. Likely he has never seen food or water before...since their manner of being fed is to insert their Beak into the throat of the parent.


So, your intenions need to be deferantial, and informed, to be able to meet him half way... always, in cases like this, there will be these disjunctions, otherwise. This is so for everyone, all the time, unless they know the drill.


Quote:
We've tried moistened EMP bird rearing food, very soft scrambled egg mushed up with digestive biscuit, scrambled egg by itself, water. Nothing. Is this the right food?

Wrong foods...Pigeons are Vegan...but the issue is more about respecting the terms he needs for the gestures themselves, for him to respond, and for him to understand your offer to feed and water him, in his terms.

Probably, three or four hours of successful electrlytes would be best to do first...

This can be a Glass of Tepid Water, into which you have dissolved a couple good pinches of Salt, and, of Sugar.

The Water/eletrolytes must be near body temperature when offered.

You can moisten your finger tips in hot water, and gently, from on low, from his Eye level or so, gently massage his Beak toward it's root, with these moist warm finger tips of one hand.

If he "nuzzles" then and Squeaks in response, with your other hand, offer him some of this tepid Water in a very small Glass or Tea Cup..as you have these finger tips on his Beak, simply bring the Tea Cup of Water to his Beak with the other hand, and then gently guide his Beak into it so he may drink...and as you do so, you keep your finger tips on his Beak the whole time.

After a few rounds of this, he will drink when you merely bring the Tea Cup of ( must be 'tepid' ) Water to him and hold it in front of him down low.

Do this first, then, in some few hours, you can try food things...

I will post some links to other threads shortly, for you to read, in which some details of the food things are explained...which may enable you to make these gestures close enough to his terms, for him to respond and eat nicely and with success for you both.


Quote:
Should we just leave him and try again in a few hours? Should we be opening his mouth and pushing the food in ?

I will post some links in a little while...

If you offend him or damage his trust of you by use of force or awkward impositions, it will be hell ever getting him to have anything to do with you, ot to trust you for offering him anything, or to eat or drink in a desired time frame...


Quote:
Other problem is his left eye. It's all covered in what looks like a crust of some sort. The other eye is fine. I've tried bathing it to try to clean it off but the gunk won't come off.

Obtain some Antibiotic Eye Ointment...which can be had of any Pharmacy or Vet or people doctor or most any Farm Store.

In some places this requires a perscription, sometimes not.


But absolutely, do get some, it comes in usually a very tiny tube.

If you can not get any NOW, get some 'Neosporin' and use that, PENDING every effort to obtain the correct one.


Take a Q-Tip, squeeze out a little squiq on to the Q-Tip, then gently 'roll' the Q-Tip over the upper part of the Eye lid area, so you are rotating the Q-Tip at the same rate it is passing the Eye...so the Q-Tip is like a Wheel rolling bye...to transfer the Ointment squig to the afflicted area, or rather, to the upper portion of it. The ointment will melt and distribute itself nicely then.


Quote:
u can't see the eye at all. In fact I've no idea if there is one. Doesn't seem to bother him though and he doesn't squeak when I'm bathing it -

Stop bathing it...and obtain some Anitibiotic Eye Ointment.


Later, if you wish to bathe it, Boil a Quart of Water, into which you have put two or three tablespoons of plain Table Salt, and once cool and kept with a lid on it, use that...but only to pour over the Eye area, and not to rub or blot in any manner.



Quote:
although he has been squeaking quite a bit on and off but that's usually been when we've left him to sleep by himself.


He is hungry, among other things.

Overall, keep your hands and arms low, and close to your body, and see anyone else there does likewise...and be gentle and slow with him in all you do.



Quote:
Finally he's permanently standing up.


This is good, shows he is feeling better than 'weak'...


Quote:
I thought baby birds nuzzled down into their nest but this one stands up even when he's sleeping.

Babys, yes...but this is a juvenile or adolesent...

And, too, he is not in his Nest...is is in some strange place.



Quote:
Anyone point me in the right direction ? Tell me what we should be doing ?

Thanks.

I will go find those links...


Good luck!


Phil
Las Vegas
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Pidgey Pidgey is offline
Posted 11th May 2007, 02:54 PM
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Looks like Pox to me. It'd be best to keep that one dry to keep it from spreading.

Pidgey
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pdpbison pdpbison is offline
Posted 11th May 2007, 02:55 PM
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Hi flyaway,



The eye may be a common and easy incidental infection to ammend, and most such situations are so...but do not wait a week, do your best to get an Antibiotic Eye Ointment "now"...since whatever is afflcting him is of course effecting his Eye itself, and the sooner this is ceased, the better for that Eye to be saved and preserved from harm.


But DO see the Vet if you are amenible, as soon as possible, to obtain his opinion on that matter, and else.


Best wishes!

Phil
Las Vegas
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pdpbison pdpbison is offline
Posted 11th May 2007, 02:56 PM
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Hi flyaway,



http://www.pigeons.biz/forums/showthread.php?t=20450


I had made some mentions in this thread which apply nicely to your situation regarding food and water and working with the young Pigeon.


Good luck!


Phil
Las Vegas
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Feefo Feefo is offline
Posted 11th May 2007, 03:01 PM
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Just a word of warning, if the eye can't be saved please don't be persuaded to PTS. I have three one eyed pigeons and can make room for another if necessary.

In the meantime bathe his eye regularly with warm sterile saline. They sell it at Boots and you can sometimes buy it in the form of pods which are used as eye washes by first aiders. If you can get some Tincture if Euphrasia that is good in an eyebath. The homeopathic remedy euphrasia in the form of pilules is also good for eye infections.

Cynthia
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Flyaway Flyaway is offline
Posted 11th May 2007, 03:12 PM
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Posts: 18
OK. Just been reading some of your posts and doing some searches of my own.

I'll get some antibiotic eye ointment - will have to be tomorrow now because we don't have a late night chemist near us.

And any antibiotic eye cream is fine for the pigeon ?
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Flyaway Flyaway is offline
Posted 11th May 2007, 03:13 PM
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Sorry cyro51, but what does PTS mean ?
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Feefo Feefo is offline
Posted 11th May 2007, 03:18 PM
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Quote:
Sorry cyro51, but what does PTS mean ?
Put to sleep.

This is a link to a video of a young pigeon being tube fed. They like their food at body heat which for pigeons is 39 degrees centigrade.

I don't think that we can get antibiotic eye ointment without a prescription.

Cynthia
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...while all the time your dear full-throated pigeons will be heard, and the turtledove high in the elm will never bring her cooing to an end. (Virgil)
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Flyaway Flyaway is offline
Posted 11th May 2007, 03:18 PM
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Sorry for all these questions!

Cyro51 I actually have some sterile saline solution (I use it for my contact lenses). But pdpbison advises to stop bathing the eye.

Lol. I'm a bit confused now.
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Flyaway Flyaway is offline
Posted 11th May 2007, 03:23 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by cyro51 View Post
Put to sleep.

This is a link to a video of a young pigeon being tube fed. They like their food at body heat which for pigeons is 39 degrees centigrade.

I don't think that we can get antibiotic eye ointment without a prescription.

Cynthia
I did wonder about the anti-biotic eye cream without a prescription but I was just going to pop out tomorrow and see what they said at Boots. Do you think I can use the saline solution I have? It's for contact lenses - is that OK ?

Put to sleep for the sake of having an eye removed?! Oh no. I can't see either me or my partner going for that.
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Feefo Feefo is offline
Posted 11th May 2007, 03:24 PM
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I don't know why Phil told you to stop bathing it because he goes on to say bathe it later with a home made saline solution. Perhaps he meant it wasn't a priority? I will leave it to him to clarify.

I am not sure whether the saline solution for lenses has something else in it...if it is just sterile saline then that should be fine.

Cynthia
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...while all the time your dear full-throated pigeons will be heard, and the turtledove high in the elm will never bring her cooing to an end. (Virgil)

Last edited by Feefo; 11th May 2007 at 03:27 PM..
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