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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I found 2 sibling pigeons on the floor at a large subway station tonight, on the upper/street level. The ceilings are very high and if these guys fell they fell a long way. One has an injured wing and maybe other injuries, the other seems OK.

They were cuddled up together and one was grooming the other when I saw them. I was on my way out to dinner so I got a box from a florist at the station and put them in it -- shallow box with an open top, so Mom/Dad could come down if need be. Had to chase one a bit but the injured one let me pick it up easily. The other also was very easy to catch.

I came back through the station a couple of hours later and they were still there, huddled in the box together. No parents in sight. So I put the lid on and took them home. This is a VERY busy station and it's very unlikely they would make it through tomorrow without someone doing something nasty to them.

Now they are in a cat carrier in the living room with a heating pad leaned up against the carrier. I tried to give them some water but they wouldn't drink. Looking at the racing pigeon photos, they appear to be 21-22 days old. They still have a tiny bit of that thin yellow down on their heads but looks like most of the adult feathers are in? They can't fly though.

I like them but I really can't keep them - for one thing I'm about to leave town for a week. We also have 3 cats. I will call the wildlife rescue people tomorrow but in the meantime what should I do? And is there anyone on this list in Boston who wants them??
 

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Discussion Starter · #4 ·
I am making phone calls now -- hoping to find somewhere to go with them before the hurricane hits! Will let this list know if I find someone. In the meantime they haven't eaten or had anything to drink since at least yesterday so I may soon go get some baby dove food at the pet store and see what I can do.

Are they old enough to eat on their own, or do I need to make one of those things they can stick their heads in to eat?
 

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You are going to have to start to provide them with some support, here is a link below that instructs on a number of ways to feed them. They have never eaten of consumed water on their own, so you will have to be careful and patient with them. They may be old enough to get some water into them on their own, there is a link inside the link below, near the bottom that describes how to guide their beak into a dish of tepid water (water must be slightly warm or they will reject it). Any questions, just ask. You will have to pick up some Kaytee hand feeding formula, but in a pinch, some baby cereal can be made up into something that can work, until the Kaytee is picked up.

http://www.pigeons.biz/forums/f6/rescued-feral-help-please-48513.html#post522672

Karyn
 

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Discussion Starter · #6 ·
A friend of mine is a vet tech who has hand-raised a blue jay and other birds and she came over, got them cleaned up, and made some gruel out of parrot food which she fed with a syringe. One ate fairly well, the other didn't. Will try again in an hour or two. It looks like we may have to keep them through the storm...My friend said it looks like the noninjured one may be able to fly in a few days. Hope so.
 

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That was kind of your friend to help you and these little guys. Is your friend going to come and attend to their feeding duties or is she going to teach you how? A couple of things, squabs (baby pigeons) this age consume a lot more food that people would generally imagine. If it's formula, then they should, over the course of a day, be getting 75-100mL of formula, it has to be not too thick at all, but able to flow, as they get their water needs as well from the formula. You have to be careful as well with the feeding technique as they can aspirate the formula with poor technique, which will not be good, and formula needs to be fed at about 102-104 degrees. How much formula did each get, what consistency was it, are they producing droppings, can you post a photos of the injuries on the one bird and photos of any droppings they are making?

Karyn
 

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This is such an easy way to feed the babies...here are the pre-written instructions...
By the way...which station did you find them?
Good luck with the approaching hurricane.

If you are seeing bright green poop, it could be the bird isn't eating enough on his own and may need to be hand fed. It also could be ill. Often the young birds will try to eat the seed and so folks assume they are eating when they really aren't.
It would be great if you could post a picture of the poop so we can give you a better opinion.
You can hand feed defrosted peas. Run some hot water over them until they are defrosted and slightly warmed. Put the bird on your lap and hold it next to your body. If it helps because you are having a hard time handling the pigeon, you can wrap a towel around it or put it in the sleeve of a tee shirt, with the head out the wrist. This method confines the pigeon without hurting him and makes it easier to handle. Gently open the beak and pop a pea at the back of the mouth and over the throat. It gets easier and faster, with practice, for both you and the bird.
You will need to feed 30-50 per feeding [depending on the size of the pigeon] and every time the crop empties until you know the baby is eating on his own. After a couple of feedings, most squeakers get the hang of it, pick up the peas on their own and naturally transition into a seed diet.
This is a wonderful method for teaching babies to eat because they feel the whole food in their mouth and it’s soft and easy to pick up and hang on to.
The crop is located right below the throat and with food it fills up like a little balloon. The peas make the crop feel lumpy and squishy.
 

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Discussion Starter · #9 ·
Thank you everyone. Hmm, I'd better try to feed them a lot more than I have been -- they haven't been taking much. Will also try the peas. I got some of the baby bird formula today so will be using that.
 

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If you do with feeding the Kaytee formula, it should not be too thick, it still should be able to flow, make it, cover and let it sit 15 minutes, adjust consistency with a bit more water, make sure it's the right temp (102-104 degrees) and feed, allow them to come up for some air from time to time while feeding. You will be looking to get 15-25 mL a feeding into them 3-4 times a day, allow the crop to empty before feeding again. Watch the clips a few times in the link I provided earlier if you are using a cut off large syringe, and pay special attention to the link/thread by Msfreebird for the bottle method, that seems to go over very well.

Please post a photo of their droppings.

Karyn
 

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Discussion Starter · #11 ·
Good news -- I found a woman who used to raise doves who is going to take them tomorrow. Their droppings do indeed look pretty dark green/brownish (see photo). I have been feeding them every couple of hours -- however I can't get either one to take more than about 2-3 ml at a time. They are still grooming themselves though and seem OK.

I hope their new caretaker will do a better job than me -- I think she will, she seems pretty experienced. Said she knew how to squirt the food directly into their mouths. I have been hesitant to do that since I don't want to get it in the wrong place!
 

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Glad you found someone who is willing to take them on who has a degree of past experience with birds. Their droppings do show they were getting some food into them and you did a good job doing what needed to be done, to keep them going. It might be a good idea to direct the woman who is taking them over to this site, as perhaps she was being inexact in her wording, but squirting food directly into their mouth is not something we recommend doing, perhaps she meant she knew how to crop feed. In any event, we would be happy to help her, if we can, and there are a lot of good resources here to draw on.

Thanks for caring and you did good,

Karyn
 

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Discussion Starter · #13 ·
Thanks. The injured one actually seems to be doing better -- he/she has eaten much better than the other one from the start and was even pecking a little today and trying to perch. The other is still pretty scared of me and hasn't eaten well but I'm trying.

This board has been very very helpful so thank you all!
 

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u dont have to go buy baby food.. they dont thrive on that food..
get cherious.. soak it in water for a bit. and feed them either peace by peace or buy a suringe in the pet store.
also corn fresh one will do amazing tricks.
and in 90% of babies that fall out of the nest some bruising occurs.. nothing to worry about.. let them rest.. lay down all they want.. and in few days they will be like new..
they look old enough to eat on their own.. offer them seed and dish of water and you'll see
 

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Discussion Starter · #15 ·
By the way, the "squirting directly into their mouths" is my phrase, not hers -- I am probably reporting it incorrectly, it's just my interpretation. Both birds groomed themselves for a while tonight and settled down comfortably so I feel reassured that they are doing OK. Tomorrow if all goes well they will have a new home.
 
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