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Hi everyone!

New to the forums here :)

I adopted a couple of rescue pigeons about a month ago and it's been a lot of fun! There were 7 pigeons altogether at the shelter (and had been there for a while) and I ended up choosing 2 at random. I named them Henry and Harri - Harri is the white wingtipped one and Henry is the plain one. During the transport home they were fighting inside the little carrier, with Henry consistently biting Harri. I thought it was just nerves/unknown environment.

I set up an extra large dog cage for them to settle into, and most of the time they'd be ok around the other. However, during the evenings and nights they would fight, and eventually it extended into the daytime too. While Henry instigated most of the fights, Harri would fight back. Sometimes it's just wing slapping and attempting to peck the other, but I became concerned because there was also biting around the eyes, shoulders, and tail. They'd also shove each other while biting, to the point where I was worried they'd end up being injured or lose an eye, so I bought a second cage and separated the two.

A couple of weeks after they'd settled in, I tried connecting the cages together so that they could interact with each other, at which point Henry went straight for Harri's food bowl, then attacked Harri and managed to pull out a feather.

What's interesting is that even though they're in separate cages, they do seem to mimic each other (the two cages are set up almost identically) and do their cooing/fanning their tails at each other too. And when they're moved too far apart, they appear to become anxious, so they do like the other's (socially distanced) presence.

Since Harri did seem to fight back, I assume they're both males, which leads to the question - is there any way to encourage them to be friendly around one another? Are they just play fighting and is it fine to have them in the same cage? At this point I'm too afraid to let them both out of the cage at the same time (they take turns being let out to stretch their wings) as I won't have a way to stop them without stepping in and grabbing one of them (both are still afraid of hands and will try and run, but Henry less so). I'd also like to put them in the same cage again at some point to save on space (I prefer not to stack them vertically because then they can't see or interact with one another).

And here's a picture if you want to say hi to them!

Bird Vertebrate Beak Feather Phasianidae
 

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Very cute pigeons! Thanks for rescuing them! They do indeed look like 2 males. Males don't really get along well especially in confined areas of space because of how territorial they can get which explains why they keep fighting. You can keep 2 females together in a small cage and they wouldn't cause any problems, but 2 males will always start fighting
 
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