Pigeon-Talk banner
1 - 20 of 36 Posts

·
Registered
Joined
·
632 Posts
Discussion Starter · #1 · (Edited)
Last Monday night my dog and I found a pigeon 'nesting' on the grass in the local park. He led me a merry dance before I could catch him, as he wouldn't fly but he ran like a road-runner.
When I brought him home and examined him I couldn't find the reason why he couldn't fly -- and I'm still at a loss.

This is the first photo I took of him in the 'quarantine' cage:



He's in very good condition, no breaks that could be felt, well fed, no parasites (strange for a feral), good symmetry, no lumps apart from a very small enlargement of the right elbow and a tiny patch of missing feathers with almost-healed scar tissue on the nape of the neck. Abdomen ok, vent clean, textbook-perfect first poops.

There's no discharge or swelling on the face, and he appears to see alright:



He's aware and alert, interested in his surroundings:



and he's incredibly tame and relaxed:



The slight lump in front of my finger corresponds to the healed scar tissue, and it only stood out here because he'd been tugging at those feathers whilst preening.

I considered the possibility of the onset of Paratyphoid, so I put him on Synulox, and also Flagyl (just in case). Since then his poops have become more like brownish-green broken spaghetti in a clear, slightly sticky liquid, but Piper's poops have also changed in a similar way, as the temperature has shot up and they've been drinking more. But the feral's poops have a distinct odour, almost like curry, which Piper's don't have.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
632 Posts
Discussion Starter · #2 ·

·
Registered
Joined
·
12 Posts
I'm a relative novice when it comes to pigeons but the fact that you said he's a great runner makes me wonder whether he has been used to not flying for a while.

I have a small parrot that drops like a stone when he's trying to fly and there's absolutely nothing wrong with him. I used to have a budgie with exactly the same problem. Normally in the wild you wouldn't think they'd last long. But you never know, some birds are smart and lucky. I wouldn't automatically think that him making moves as if he was about to take off has to be an indication that he flew until recently. My flightless birds have done the same.

A while ago, I came across a collared dove lingering in the garden unable to fly. I quaranteened it for a short while, fed and watered it and what happened, it took to the air again. No idea what its problem was. But sometimes just looking after them and giving them a bit of tlc seems to work wonders.

Spok
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
95 Posts
Feral, tame and relaxed.. don't like the sound of this..

As with flying, birds usually hesitate on flying when they suffer respiratory infection,
canker or structural problems. In the 1st photo it doesn't look like a healthy pose to
me, but then again might be my imagination.

Did you check the inside of the mouth, the throat for example any smelling or strange
looking things? check the sound of breathing at night, is't loud/noisy or starnge?

Or it might be what spok said..​
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
20,301 Posts
perhaps he has an old spinal injury and is handicapped. you can keep him and see how things go, but he may end up being your pet.;):)...of course do all the things he needs as far as deworming and poop checks. If he is eating and not in pain then it may always be a mystery. wish they could talk.
 

·
Premium Member
Joined
·
25,396 Posts
Yes, I would treat for worms, canker and coccidiosis, and do the preventatives like probiotics and ACV and garlic.

Once he has time to get some nutrition and good meals, he just may fly again.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
566 Posts
Just two quick qusetions:

1. DId you check his flight feathers to see if everything is there?

2. If you pick him up about shoulder high and give him a toss, does he try to fly or just drop like a stone.

By the way, a pigeon's brain is located at he back of its head, not on top like a human. Just about exactly where that scar tissue is.
 
G

·
It could be just the angle of the video but the birds posture doesn't seem right to me. Almost like he's holding is body down and not standing up normally the way pigeons do. Could be a spine injury. If there's an enlargement of the elbow that could indicate a healing fracture.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
632 Posts
Discussion Starter · #9 ·
Thank you so much for your advice. Here are the answers to your questions.

There aren't any growths in his mouth, and he's eating, drinking and preening normally. His breathing is normal, effortless. Earlier on he even started cooing!!
The flight feathers are all there and in perfect condition. I haven't tried to toss him off my shoulder for fear he would hurt himself, but I'll try it at some point.
He does seem to stand quite low a lot of the time, and he perches resting his whole body on his feet, but he's quite alert. I can't get over how tame he is! I think he may have been a pet, especially if his reason for not flying is not a recent injury or illness, as I 'patrol' the park twice a day and I would have seen him.

The poops seem to be getting more watery and this is worrying me, even though the medication, hot weather and change of diet will undoubtedly have an influence.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
95 Posts
A long time ago i used to have a pigeon that was reluctant to fly.. i would chase
it and it would run away and could jump over obstacles but wouldn't fly, it didn't
show any other symptoms.. except after a month or so it started to show heavy
breathing at night, i used doxy-t and after 2 weeks it started to fly and behave
normally. now, this might not be what's wrong with yours i just thought i would
share it..

You have to note that birds in general try their best to hide their illness, so they
won't become a victim of bullying by other birds. therefore symptoms might not
show up early untill the bird is so sick to even care to hide it.

Still, i don't like the pose of the 1st pic.. it doesn't look normal!​
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
499 Posts
teresa,.physical aspects can be misleading,.watch the intake of food and output/poops,.keep the clavamox handy ,/.beeks-(grown pigeon.) had very watery sikly green poops/then could not fly/squatted down to sleep,..a few doses of antibiotic pulled her through,but it was about a three week ordeal/including learning/desiring flight-even my best effort could not save her baby-(walle),...sincerely james waller [email protected]
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,709 Posts
I have a pij Strause that won't fly. I tried to release her awhile back and she would not take off from the ground. She ran quick and it took awhile to catch her weaving in and out of stuff on my patio. She's fine otherwise.

I had another pij who has the same posture as yours. I was afraid to let her go because of that. Everything else was good with her so I did let her go. She flys fine but just walks low.

I believe it's her that comes back and hangs out and sometimes stays on my patio at night. Same posture and doesn't seem to be bothered by me.

I don't know.:confused:
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
632 Posts
Discussion Starter · #14 · (Edited)
In the video that bird has some thing wroung with its right wing.
Yes, there is a very slight enlargement of that elbow, so I thought Paratyphoid was a definite suspect and started him on Salmonella-specific antibiotics, but there are none of the characteristic lumps. It looks more like he had it in the past.
I recently released a rehab I had been treating and which, even on release, had a much bigger swelling, and yet he flew like an arrow: http://www.pigeons.biz/forums/f5/my-baby-is-free-33169.html
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
632 Posts
Discussion Starter · #15 ·
A long time ago i used to have a pigeon that was reluctant to fly.. i would chase
it and it would run away and could jump over obstacles but wouldn't fly, it didn't
show any other symptoms.. except after a month or so it started to show heavy
breathing at night, i used doxy-t and after 2 weeks it started to fly and behave
normally. now, this might not be what's wrong with yours i just thought i would
share it..

You have to note that birds in general try their best to hide their illness, so they
won't become a victim of bullying by other birds. therefore symptoms might not
show up early untill the bird is so sick to even care to hide it.

Still, i don't like the pose of the 1st pic.. it doesn't look normal!​
Apart from Paratyphoid, my other main suspect was Ornithosis, hence an antibiotic indicated also for respiratory tract infections, but the pigeon wasn't showing any of the symptoms. The alarm bells rang when you said that your bird only showed the symptoms a month or so later, so it's still a possibility.
I haven't got doxy-t, so I'm going to find out more about it and get some.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
632 Posts
Discussion Starter · #16 ·
teresa,.physical aspects can be misleading,.watch the intake of food and output/poops,.keep the clavamox handy ,/.beeks-(grown pigeon.) had very watery sikly green poops/then could not fly/squatted down to sleep,..a few doses of antibiotic pulled her through,but it was about a three week ordeal/including learning/desiring flight-even my best effort could not save her baby-(walle),...sincerely james waller [email protected]
Many thanks for your advice, James. I'm sorry you couln't save baby Walle, but glad to know mum pulled through. I'm getting worried about the worsening condition of the poops, but can't understand why that happened more than twenty-four hours after being unable to fly. The first poops were perfectly normal. I'll keep you posted.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,207 Posts
Could he have a cracked collar bone( clavicle) ? If it is cracked they wont fly either. Been over that with my vet and many other birds I had rehabbed and that was what was wrong.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
632 Posts
Discussion Starter · #18 ·
I have a pij Strause that won't fly. I tried to release her awhile back and she would not take off from the ground. She ran quick and it took awhile to catch her weaving in and out of stuff on my patio. She's fine otherwise.

I had another pij who has the same posture as yours. I was afraid to let her go because of that. Everything else was good with her so I did let her go. She flys fine but just walks low.

I believe it's her that comes back and hangs out and sometimes stays on my patio at night. Same posture and doesn't seem to be bothered by me.

I don't know.:confused:
My daughter asked a curious question when she saw the pigeon. She asked if it was possible that he didn't know how to fly, if maybe he'd always been in captivity before. It sounds crazy, but seeing how tame and fat he is, it's not impossible. I just hope he's not ill or in pain. We'll see what happens.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
632 Posts
Discussion Starter · #19 ·
Serendipity...

perhaps he has an old spinal injury and is handicapped. you can keep him and see how things go, but he may end up being your pet.;):)...of course do all the things he needs as far as deworming and poop checks. If he is eating and not in pain then it may always be a mystery. wish they could talk.
Your post made me laugh, because I'd just been talking to him and said exactly that, 'Wish you could talk...'
And yes, if he's flightless but otherwise alright, I'd love to keep him. And therein lies the greater mystery: I had been making enquiries with local people who keep pigeons, trying to buy a flightless or handicapped pigeon to keep Piper company (that was the idea whem I bought him the luxury cage that will house two in comfort). Piper gets all excited when there are rehabs in the house, but gets lonely when they are released. He had become especially attached to Noel, but Noel was desperate to be free and we had to let him go.
Well, I drew a blank with the breeders, and then suddenly this pigeon comes on the scene!! I've named him Poppet as he's such a little darling. I'll do everything in my power to make sure he's healthy and becomes able to fly, but if he's alright and simply flightless he may just be the answer to my prayers!
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
632 Posts
Discussion Starter · #20 ·
Could he have a cracked collar bone( clavicle) ? If it is cracked they wont fly either. Been over that with my vet and many other birds I had rehabbed and that was what was wrong.
Now that's very interesting, as he's got a healed scar just below the nape of his neck, with a very few feathers missing. It looks like the result of pecking, perhaps by a seagull, as the seagull juveniles are hungry and aggressive at this time of the year and flock onto the park when the pigeons are fed.

His wings fold and unfold well, and he opens them to hop, but on closer inspection he doesn't raise them above his body, so a collar bone injury definitely seems like a possibility. What's the best course of action in this case?
 
1 - 20 of 36 Posts
This is an older thread, you may not receive a response, and could be reviving an old thread. Please consider creating a new thread.
Top