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Discussion Starter · #1 · (Edited)
I was walking to the train station yesterday morning when i saw a pigeon walking in a shallow drain, it didn't run away when i walked past so i thought pigeons are now less shy. (lol~)

When i came home near midnight, it was still in the drain! this time it was "lying down" but seemed awake. I went home for a box (with shredded paper as a lining) to bring it to my front porch/garden as that stretch of alley is filled with cats. evidently, it can't fly, because it didn't even try to escape the box (its height is less than the length of an A4 paper).

i guess it was in shock because it just stared at me in a terrified way, but didn't move much.

As Singapore (where i live,) is usually rather warm throughout the day/night, about 28~30˚C average, i just left the bird there in the dark garden with a small (sliced) banana and a slice of wholemeal bread i tore up.

This morning, i woke up to find the pigeon out of the box and walking about the garden. my mum had also added some rice and popcorn (uncooked), to the little plate where all it's food has been sitting. The banana and the bread from the previous night was untouched.

It still looks petrified whenever i go to the garden :( but when i watched it from inside the house, it takes a couple of steps every now and then looks about the place or just stands there. It preens itself more than an average pigeon would, i guess? And it preened and walked, preened walked, and preened... (for about 20 minutes) it tried to fly, but failed.

It looks healthy (to me), and not a fully grown adult size yet.

Anyone know what is wrong with this teenage pigeon? Is this because it is too young?

here are some pictures:




"lying down" and STARING at me from outside the house


a picture of it "lying down" from inside the house. he looks tired (?)
 

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Hi gatalove and welcome! Thank you so much for assisting this young pigeon. It looks pretty good from the photos you provided, but something looks "off" to me, and I'm not real sure what that is .. will have to keep looking at the pictures and thinking about it. The excessive preening may be due to the bird having an overload of parasites .. feather mites and/or lice.

Can you get some wild bird seed mix for the bird .. that would be a better thing to feed or dove pigeon mix?

Hopefully others will be along shortly with their observations and comments.

Please do continue helping this young pigeon until we figure out what's going on.

Terry
 

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Hi Gatalove, this is young bird that probably does not know how to feed alone. Please take some thawed corn and peas run hot water ower them until slightly warm and handfeed him.
You can take him in your lap, use old towel or teeshirt to wrap him losely (just to stop him from flapping wings) open his beak and pop pea or corn in the beak. Push it gently inside for him to swallow. Repeat procedure until 40~50 pieces are dow his throat.
Feed him twice a day morning and evening and keep him safe inside house as he is to young to fend from predators.
This is just inexperienced bird who needs your help.
 

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Exactly - follow Plamenh's advice - the bird is too young by at least 1-2 weeks to know how to forage and eat - it is amazing she survived because surely she is unaware of predators as well ! Right now he needs food-food-food (and maybe a bath in a day or two - but not until he has been fed more using Plamenh's method - l use a toothpick to locate the veggie near the back of their throat past the end of tongue and windpipe - they will usually just swallow it naturally ). Also please make sure that the yard is completely secure from ANY predators. l would NOT suggest allowing him out of the box (or at least outside) and freedom to walk in the yard for a week at least - he may get strong enough to fly away - but that would NOT be strong enough to survive on his own ! Also take a look inside his mouth when you feed hm - is his breath very foul or are there any white or yellow splotches ? His mouth should be pink inside. Thanks for saving his/her life !
 

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Hello gatalove,

Something seems odd in the second of the three pictures. There is a feather sticking up at an odd angle.

Is it just a solitary loose feather? Loose, perhaps because he banged into something, or the feather got snagged somehow?

Is there damage to the wing, or damage to other nearby feathers?

Hard to tell what's going on, if anything, without more description from you, if you think something is wrong.

If the pigeon has parasites, as Terry has mentioned above, there are powders and sprays which will take care of that. There are posts on this website discussing this. If the pigeon doesn't have parasites, it could be that the pigeon feels you are paying it attention and he doesn't feel comfortable with that attention.

From my limited experience with feral pigeons, a pigeon often will preen a lot to send the message "Hey I'm just doing my thing, don't mind me" when he wants to avoid an aggressive situation. Such a situation may arise when another pigeon is nearby or a human or other animal is staring at him. I have seen a group of pigeons become suddenly very busy with preening and self-grooming. I don't think it's the same sort of preening that a woman (or man) does when she/he wants to be noticed.

My wife thought the pigeons did it because they were shy. I would refine this, to say that they are uncertain in the particular situation.

I have read that predators often have eyes close together on the front of their face, to focus on prey, and prey animals have eyes on the sides of their heads to keep predators they are fleeing from in sight.

A lot of words here in this post, and probably more than a few errors.

Thanks for helping this pigeon out. I have rescued a number of feral pigeons, some for the better, and I hope not too many for the worse. They are wonderful creatures, very intelligent and emotional. I have learned a lot from them, since they are different from us mammals in many ways, and yet so much the same in the essential urge to enjoy life.

Larry
 
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