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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I am a rookie.

I have 5 birds in a loft and I am feeding the birds the same time every day. For the last couple of days one of the birds seems to be bulling the the other four. If they come around the food while he is eating, he goes after them, and bites them by there eye, beak, or back of the neck, and doesn't' let go! Then he continues to chase them for a few seconds.

Two of the birds seems to of lost quite a bit of feathers (or maybe there molting, not sure). Is this normal pecking order behavior? Is this a sign of not feeding enough? I feed about 1.5 cups of seeds per day for the 5 birds. Should I separate them or him? Should I let them figure it out and not worry about it?

MY biggest concern is that I don't want any of them to be injured.

Just looking for some feed back,,,,thanks!
 

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Can you tell us how big your loft is?
Do they eat all the food?
Do you have nest boxes?...If so, how many?
Do you know the gender of you birds?
Have any of them paired up?:D

They could be molting...this is the time.
 

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Brian, as long as none of them are getting seriously hurt, I would let them sort it out themselves.
Being in a new environment they are figuring out their pecking order.
You may want to try placing the feed in 2 feeders instead of just one and watch to make sure that they are all getting enough to eat.
They should continue to feel well rounded on the breast bone (keel).
Keith
 

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How long have you had the birds? Is this a new behavior for this bird? And yes, knowing how big the loft is would be helpful. They could be moulting, but I don't like birds doing that. Does he chase them at other times, or just when the food is down?
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
The loft is 6 ft, by 2.5ft deep by 3 ft high.

I have only had the birds for a week, so I am not sure if this is new behavior. There is three nesting bowls for the two couples. I bought the two pairs, so I am assuming they are paired already. Some days the food is completely gone and other days there is a lot left. Can't figure that one out either.

Keith...how did you find me on here? awesome! Thanks for the help, I will try two feeders. I can segregate my loft, but I am not sure yet which two are a couple.

thanks for the help everyone!
 

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Why the odd number of birds? That could also be part of the problem. You shouldn't add but 1 more.
What do you have in the cage? Can we see a picture?
 

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The loft is 6 ft, by 2.5ft deep by 3 ft high.

I have only had the birds for a week, so I am not sure if this is new behavior. There is three nesting bowls for the two couples. I bought the two pairs, so I am assuming they are paired already. Some days the food is completely gone and other days there is a lot left. Can't figure that one out either.

Keith...how did you find me on here? awesome! Thanks for the help, I will try two feeders. I can segregate my loft, but I am not sure yet which two are a couple.

thanks for the help everyone!

Maybe there is a lot left because he is keeping the others from eating. You could always confine him to let the others eat, then let him eat.
 

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Brian, I am on Pigeon Talk a lot. It is the best pigeon site and I like pigeons.

The two males were both pretty masculine. Their heads are considerably more squared off and strong. They were very tight, where the pelvic bones join and the females were both very loose.
Place your index finger on the pelvis and you should be able to tell the difference.
Keith
 

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Discussion Starter · #9 ·
if I can tell the difference then how do I know, if I separate them, that I am putting the two that belong with each other, together? Or does it matter, I remember you telling me that the males will mount any females given enough time.
 

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Brian, I think it would be best to keep them together.
They seem to form stronger pairs when given a chance to pick their own mates.
I don't think the bully will do more than intimidate the other pigeons and I think he will stop soon.
You may want to place the young bird in a diffent pen to avoid having it pair up with one of the whites.
Keith
 

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if I can tell the difference then how do I know, if I separate them, that I am putting the two that belong with each other, together? Or does it matter, I remember you telling me that the males will mount any females given enough time.

You don't want to break up pairs. It does matter. Watch them. You should be able to tell who is with who.
 

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make sure your feeder is long enough for everyone plus some. they tend to fight if there is not enough room at the feeder, a long feeder so they can eat from both sides. I see mine every now and then fight a bit when they first are picking feeding spots, but it does not last long. and yes this is molting season, mine are almost done, around the head seems to be filling in now. also it is good to feed 2x a day, that way they are not going to gorge and be as in a frenzy to get at the feed.
 

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It won't hurt them to break up a pair. :rolleyes:

Most are winding down for the winter, but like Jay said if you pay attention you can tell which birds go together.
I disagree. Ask the birds if it will hurt them to break up a pair. They have chosen their mate, and separating them is mean, when it is not necessary.
 

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I agree, Im going to take a guess and say it causes distress, because they are not talking. but.... no reason to get into a debate on a thread about bullies or fighting birds.
 

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God forbid that anyone should have a difference of opinion on this forum! I think it is rather amusing that we can't have any friendly debates or every thread gets deleted or locked.

But my response was not off topic to the OP... if the birds are fighting, then separate them before someone gets physically hurt. Those of us who breed for show have to break up pairs from time to time, as it is responsible breeding practices not to breed certain birds so sometimes you have to break up pairs. Most fanciers break up ALL the pairs in the winter, too, to give them a break from each other. It happens. Does it make them sad? Probably. But I’ve never seen one that didn’t get over it. Just like I would eventually get over it if my significant other left me or died, etc. Sure it causes distress, but it seems a lot less stressful than being run ragged, with feathers plucked and starving because it is being bullied! If the bird is young, letting them fight it out will most likely end in illness caused by stress. An older bird, yes I would give it a few days and see if they can sort it out on their own. Separate the young one, if that is the one that is getting bullied, as others have already suggested. Maybe your setup is a problem, as has already been suggested. Some birds will always fight, no matter what. I’m not an expert but I know what has and hasn’t worked for me. And I learned the hard way how a poor setup can affect a naturally aggressive bird -- I had two birds killed by scalping and one died in my hands. In a perfect world I would let all my birds chose their mates and stay mated for life. In fact, I have three “pet” pairs that I did let chose their mates and they can stay like that forever. But I raise birds for show, so it doesn’t always work out so perfectly. Depends what YOUR priorities are in having pigeons. If one of my cocks was being overly aggressive to his mate and chasing her constantly, you bet that I would break them up whether or not the pairing makes sense or if they chose each other. Not worth it having a sick bird.
I thought the question was does it cause distress? so you agree, thats all, we all know pairs sometimes are seperated for one reason or another, and the one you mentioned is a good reason, :)
 

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I do agree that sometimes you have to separate. I'm only saying that unless it is necessary, I wouldn't. It shouldn't be all that hard to figure out who is with who. If you can't tell, try locking up the offender in a nestbox. His mate will come to the surface, as she will be over there wanting to spring him, or just steadfastly staying by his side. At least mine will do that. When I have to confine one in the loft for one reason or another, it's very obvious who the mate to that bird is. The one hanging around him wondering why he is in lock-up. LOL.
 
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