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Hello everyone!

My current orphaned pigeons are 4 weeks old this week. I have been caring for them since they were about 2 -3 days old. These have been my healthiest, most energetic baby pigeons ever. Most normal poop I've ever seen, super appetites, and prettiest feathers.

Last week (week 3), I noticed one of the pigeons starting to pick at the towel. I thought, Yay! Seed time. It was right on time for when my other babies have wanted seeds. I gave them one tablespoon of parakeet seeds (same formula that I've used with others). One gobbled them all up. I gave the non-eater a full serving and a half serving for the one who ate seeds. At the next formula feeding (3 hours later), I thought about putting in more seeds but noticed the seed-eater still had seeds in his crop. I skipped the seeds for the rest of the day and continued to monitor. At bedtime, there were still seeds palpable in the crop.

Next morning, seeds had left the crop. I offered another tablespoon of seeds which both gobbled up this time. I gave them both a half serving of formula. At lunch time, they still had seeds in their crop. Same song and dance as the night before, seeds stayed in the crop throughout the afternoon but were gone the next morning. Every day, I've given them seeds in the morning and this has repeated. Yesterday, I thought at lunch time the seeds had moved through instead of hanging out all day (Yay, I thought again!) I gave them 2 tablespoons which they gobbled up. The rest of the afternoon they seemed uncomfortable (like post-Thanksgiving dinner). I did thinned formula until bedtime. This morning, seeds had moved through and there was lots of poop.

I did try chopping up defrosted frozen peas but they thought those were stupid.

I did try offering small bird grit to see if they just needed a little grit aid, but my experience in the past with these tiny seeds is they don't need very much if any at all.

I've checked several fecals on them, no parasites.

I've had some overstuffed babies when they were overzealous about seeds when my backed was turned, but nothing quite like this. Any recommendations?
 

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Update: While I was waiting for a response I did another fecal (why not, right? Plenty of poop to go around when you have a pair). Dag nabbit, I found parasite eggs. Our parasite book doesn't cover pigeons very well. It resembled a cat or dog roundworm egg. I've dewormed with pyrantel. Still open to suggestions if anyone has something to throw my way.
 

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First of all they shouldn't be wormed till about 4 months of age, unless really necessary as it is very toxic.
If they are filling up on seed, they need to be drinking water, or it is going to sit there in their crop like a brick. Or are you giving the seed with formula at the same time? Hard to follow exactly what is going on. If you are giving both formula and seed at the same time, then it must be too much seed for a feeding. I would pull back on the amount of seed. If you saw worm eggs, did you use a microscope? Please don't let them eat a lot of seed til they are drinking. To help the crop to move things through for now, give only warmed baby applesauce with a bit of warm water, and gently message the crop. Very gently, you don't want to bring it back up and aspirate them. Give only this until the crops empty. Also, they should only be fed anyway, after the crop empties. Feed, then wait for it to empty before feeding again.
 

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I used to feed mine when they started eating seed with the formula watered down because I hadn't seen them drinking and also add a little Apple sauce, like Jay has said. One of mine in particular would eat his sisters grain given half a chance so he had the watered down formula while the other had normal. I spent ages trying to get this one to drink, dipping my finger in the dish like a beak but he wasn't having any of it - then I saw him drinking on his own and wondered if he'd been doing that all along and there was I fussing around for no reason, lol.
Watered down feed with Apple sauce added and I bet the seed will start to go more quickly.
 

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Hello everyone!

They have been drinking water (good gulps).

I was giving them some formula when seeds were offered. Even though I had seen them drinking, I worry about the transition from formula to seeds. When seeds were offered (1/2 to 1 measured tablespoon per pigeon), I cut formula back from 14 ml to 8 mL.

Fecal testing was done by fecal floatation and analyzed with a microscope. Eggs seen were 1 - 2 per high power field. Pyrantel dose was calculated and given as directed by wildlife formulary.

After talking with the vets I work with, I'm going to just do formula for 2 days (yesterday and today) to give the crop a rest from seeds and to allow the parasites time to die. Tomorrow I will try small amounts of seeds again with applesauce on hand.
 

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Good. I would just cut back on the amount of seeds given, and add the apple sauce to the formula. They should be transitioning over to seed slowly.

Freda- the best way to teach them to drink is by gently dipping their beak into the water.
 
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