Pigeon-Talk banner
1 - 19 of 19 Posts

·
Registered
Joined
·
23 Posts
Discussion Starter · #1 ·
While I was cleaning their enclosure the father of two young and mate of a female escaped. I was certain he would return as he was so attached to his mate and the best dad ever to his offspring. Then I heard the commotion and I knew he had been hit by a hawk. We have waited three days and he hasnt returned. Im more concerned now for his two-three week offspring and his mate. Im worried she wont care for the babies. She has also laid an egg in the nest next to the youngsters. I tried putting one of her more recent but almost mature offspring back in their cage but she did not like this so I removed it. Im looking for any advice on how to proceed in this case. Do I need to wait to introduce a possible new mate for the female or should I just put her in the aviary with the others and see if she wants to find a new mate from among her offspring. At this point this is all she has to choose from.
Any and all advice is welcome. Thank you so much for sharing.
 

·
Premium Member
Joined
·
25,396 Posts
At 3 weeks of age they are still not weaned so please check link on feeding babies: http://www.pigeonrescue.co.uk/caringforababypigeon.htm She may or may not be feeding them, so be prepared. Dads usually start feeding them once another egg is laid.

I would REMOVE the egg before any incubation and replace with a fake egg for now. The mother does not need any additional stress, leave her where she is right now, if she is safe.

Also, if you hear the commotion from a hawk attack you can run over where the hawk is and get your bird back, they don't always kill them right away-depends on where they are grabbed, I have rescued several of mine that way.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
23 Posts
Discussion Starter · #3 ·
Thank you, I just fed the two. One is more than twice the size of the other. Im most concerned about the smallest one. I used ground bird seed, chicken egg yolk and water together and then used an eye dropper to administer. I watched some videos on how others do it. The babies were surprisingly calm and will probably get more used to my feeding them as the time goes on. Do you know how long I should have to continue to hand feed them? Im assuming the midget one will require my attention longer than the larger one. The larger one will perch on the side of the nest but the smallest one still just sits down in the nest depression.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
23 Posts
Discussion Starter · #4 ·
Mama is cleaning the larger one now. I obviously got food around the beak, head and neck area as I sloppily tried to feed them. This is a good sign as this is the most attentive she has been since Cyrano left. He was hit by the hawk about 100 feet high or more in the air and more than that away from me. There is no way I could have saved him without him flying back. He took off for the park immediately and was out of sight.
 

·
Premium Member
Joined
·
25,396 Posts
PLEASE follow instructions carefully for feeding and make sure to feed the smaller one first, sounds like he/she has not been getting enough food or it may need a general antibiotic, as one nest mate being so much smaller then other is a symptom of salmonella/paratyphoid. PLEASE post a picture of the two. Does the bird look like it is thriving or not?

You can start leaving a small deep spill proof bowl of pigeon seed out for them 24/7, you can start weaning them. Let them practice. See if they will drink water out of a small bowl (gently tip their beak in bowl of water, do not cover the nostrils), if they do, they are ready to wean.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
23 Posts
Discussion Starter · #7 ·
Id love to show a picture to compare the two squab as it looks more like the smaller one is the offspring of the larger sib. Unfortunately I cannot figure out how to insert a picture on this sight. I use backyard chicken site all the time and have no problem with pictures but this site is an enigma.

The smaller one doesnt look sick at all just smaller. It did hatch a few days after the larger one but I have not seen such a difference in size of sibs before. The larger one looks to be about a month old but the smaller one looks to be about two weeks old.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
29,797 Posts
Are you sure you are feeding enough? You may need to feed them frozen peas which have been defrosted and warmed. That may be easier. Here's how.

If you need to feed peas to a pigeon, hold the bird on your lap and against your body. This gives you more control. Reach from behind his head with one hand and grasp his beak on either side. Now use your free hand to open the beak, and put a pea in, then push it to the back of his throat and over his tongue. Let him close his beak and swallow. Then do another. It gets easier with practice, and the bird also gets more used to it, and won't fight as much. If you can't handle the bird, then use the sleeve cut off a t-shirt, slip it over his head and onto his body, with his head sticking out. This will stop him from being able to fight you so much. Just don't make it tight around his crop area. It helps if you have him facing your right side if you are right handed.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
23 Posts
Discussion Starter · #9 ·
Thank you Jay3 and I have used the sleeve for operations on birds but never had to feed a baby dove prior to this. So far Ive been able to get some food in it using a wide eye dropper. I am able to fill the little one's crop and I now think that mama may be stepping back in to help. I did take her egg and did not replace it. I dont want her to even feel the pressure to brood as she needs to focus on the babies. Im leaning toward letting her go in the large aviary with the others when the babies are ready too. Cyrano was my first and I was closest to him. With the loss of him I think I will put all the dove together in one large area as there really isnt any use to keep the smaller aviary area for the breeding pair.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
29,797 Posts
If you are still going to want to breed, then I would find her a new mate eventually, rather then to have her pair up with one of her offspring. How many birds do you have?
It would be better for the smaller baby if you could supplement him with extra feedings till he catches up.
I'm sorry you lost him. I know how awful it is to lose any bird, especially when it is your favorite one. Keep an eye on them, as she may give up on the feeding.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
23 Posts
Discussion Starter · #11 ·
I agree about getting different genetics for her to mate with however her offspring have paired up in the aviary and so their offspring might be weak due to the relationship. I only had Roxanne and Cyrano who came from very different genetic pools otherwise all are related. I am going to try to get some fertile eggs from my friend who gave me Cyrano. They will have similar genetics to Cyrano, my escapee, and perhaps that will help the pool.
Im caring for the tiny squab. I have it with me for now. I fed it and did add antibiotics to the food. I made such a mess all over him that I had to rinse his chest area off. I wanted to make sure he was not cold as he dried off so I blew him dry. Now he is with me sitting on a terry towel atop a heated pillow of flax seed. I told him I promised his dad that I would care for him. Roxanne is spending all her time grooming and attending to the larger baby. Im wondering if she knows something I dont regarding the health of the baby. Parents amaze me as to what they sense in their offspring and how they then attend to them, caring for the strong and healthy and leaving the weaker ones to flounder and often die. I will try not to let this little one die and hopefully it will catch up in size if it allows me to feed him. Lots of resistance at this point that is why he got so messed up with food all over him.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
29,797 Posts
I would have kept him with the Mom, and just supplemented him with extra feedings. Or remove the larger one till the smaller one is fed, then put the larger one back. They are usually better off left with the parent.

I think it is more that the smaller baby isn't as strong to get in the parents face to demand food. The larger one hogs it all. And the small one gets weaker. You can still feed him and keep him with her.

How many birds do you have?
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
23 Posts
Discussion Starter · #13 ·
Oh I put it back after it sat on the warm pad for a short time. I originally put it right back into the nest I it looked so cold because I had to wash it. I think it was best to warm it up a bit first. I am just feeding and putting it back. Tonight's feeding went a lot better. Im just having a hard time knowing how much to give it. I have only been giving it three eye droppers full at each feeding and feeding it twice a day. Im just not sure if mama is helping out or not. She spends a lot of time staring into the park and cooing. I know she is looking for Cyrano. I have six of their offspring in the large aviary and mama with two babies are in the smaller aviary.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
29,797 Posts
Yes, it was probably better to dry and warm him up first.:) How does her crop feel? It should feel like a little bean bag, maybe 2/3 full. Don't think 3 eye droppers are enough.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
23 Posts
Discussion Starter · #15 ·
I am afraid to over feed. I do feel its chest and it felt puffed out and squishy. Do you think as it gets more used to me feeding it that when I come near it might start the wing shaking to indicate he needs feeding. Im more familiar with crops on chickens than dove. This is my first up close dealings with the babies for sure. I have only held them in the past for a quail minute. Feeding them is a whole new part for me.

I cant thank you enough, Jay3, for talking me through all of this. Im feel so sad and yet I know what I need to do thanks to all the support.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
29,797 Posts
If you can email me some close up pics of the baby and how his crop looks, it may help.
I can understand your concern about over feeding. I would be unfamiliar with chickens. LOL.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
23 Posts
Discussion Starter · #17 ·
I think I may have had a little success with this. After feeding and sitting in the sun I put midget baby back in the cage with mama and sib. Mama was on the floor of the cage so I put baby down there in the food. Larger sib joined them and they search a bit in the food for eats together. Now the sun came in the cage and tiny found the sun to sit in, larger baby joined him and now even mama is near by. Im so happy to see them all enjoying time together.
I will gladly share pics if I can. Jay3, I would email you the ones I have just let me know where.
 
1 - 19 of 19 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