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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Hello everyone,

I was given a wild baby pigeon from a friend when the nest was destroyed. I was told that there was another egg which had began to hatch. This led me to believe that our baby pigeon was only a day old or so old when we got him. If that estimate is correct he wold now be 5 days old. We have been giving him vetafarm neocare formula and he is very full of energy and always ravenous!

Anyway, I have uploaded a picture of him and was wondering if anyone could take a look at it and decide if he looks healthy for a 5 day old pigeon?

Thank you,
Shaye.
 

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The 2 babies would have been better off being raised together. They nestle together and keep each other warm, and they also keep each other company, and so feel more secure, and it helps them to know they are birds. Single birds raised alone, I think have a harder time in a human world, as some don't even know they are birds, and later have a hard time adjusting if you do put them with another bird. There are just so many reasons why they should have been kept together. It's sad to separate them when there is a sibling.
That being said, you need to keep him very warm or he won't be able to digest his food properly. He also needs a proper nest so that his legs don't splay out which will make him disabled. He looks healthy and has a full crop. You should always wait for the crop to empty before feeding again. How often do you feed him?
You can go to this website and get a lot of good info to help you.

http://www.pigeonrescue.co.uk/
 

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Discussion Starter · #4 ·
Thanks for your reply Jay3.

I would have liked the babies to have been kept together also. However, the people who took down the nest threw the egg away. They told me that it had some little holes. They took this as meaning the egg was broken and not that the baby was beginning to hatch. So yeah it is very sad that the other baby pigeon can't be with this one.
We are worried about the future for this little guy not being raised around other pigeons...

Currently we have been keeping him in a fish tank with a reptile heat rock on the bottom with lots of blankets on top. I have checked the temperature with a thermometer and it stays about 35-37 degrees.

What would be a good nest to stop him from getting splayed legs? In his tank he sits on a wash cloth that I have shaped as a nest/bowl. He seems to have gained a lot of strength in his legs in the last two days and almost stands up when we feed him.

I have hand raised two indian ringneck parrots however they were not as young as this little guy. So I kinda have a bit of experience in hand raising just not with a baby bird this young!

I am not overly sure how much food he should be getting. He has the food at a grainy milk consistency at the moment. We weigh him before he gets a feed and generally he eats about two grams. So he weighed 20 grams this morning and then after his meal he weighed 22 grams. Does this sound like enough?
From this page we have been in-undated on how to know the signs of his crop being full enough. Like finding the little bubbles near his shoulders that kind of rise when his crop is full.
We have been feeding him about four times a day every 3- 4 hours.

We did have a scare two days ago where in the morning we overfed him which resulted in some food being congested at the bottom of his crop. We took notes from this page because we were so worried about him getting sour crop! On that day we fed him only very runny formula to keep him hydrated and very gently messaged his crop to help break up the clumps. We also added a tiny drop of apple cider vinegar to his food and by the next day his crop was back to normal.

We are so worried about loosing him as we are very attached already.
 

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He's lovely isn't he and he looks comfortable enough. I judge how much to feed by the feel of the crop, it should feel nice and full but also moveable like a bean bag and not tight. At five days old I was thickening their feeds to a cheese sauce consistency and just to be sure it went through the system okay I added a squirt of baby food apple sauce to one of the feeds a day. For the legs a wash cloth if it towelling material is okay because they can grip it and I used cardboard shreds on top to give a little extra grip and it doesn't slip on the cloth so should be fine, just keep the legs in check at each feed and if you're worried you can make a deep ridge in the nest so as it helps keep them together. When using wash cloths check the legs and toes for fibres because hair like fibres can get caught around the digits and restrict the blood flow, very difficult to see unless up close. I used hay on one occasion and whether it was a tiny hay fibre or something I'd missed before I don't know but one of mine has a deformed toe now because something wrapped around it - was lucky he didn't lose it altogether. I've not used hay since and I didn't with the other four and they've all been okay. I raised my five from eggs and only had the two last ones (tumblers) raised together, for the singletons you need to put a small teddy in to snuggle up with, they like their teddies, lol. Do you use the syringe and balloon technique to feed the baby? They take very well to it and it's a very easy way to feed.
Good luck with this little guy, if you decide to keep him you can always get him a friend later or if a sanctuary takes him when he's bigger they may be able to release him with a flock. Personally I think you'll find it hard to part with him because they trap you with their charm and character. Thanks for all you're doing with him and the temps are fine ATM until he starts getting feathers and doesn't need so much warmth.
 

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Discussion Starter · #7 ·
Hey Jay3, I did check out the link. Its a really good website and I found the information provided was really good. I will use it to look back!

FredaH, he is a real cutie. We will use your advice on how the crop should feel more like a bean bag and not be tight. This morning we thickened his formula to a cheese consistency and it looks like it has gone through him nicely. Later today I will go grab some apple sauce baby food and see how he goes. I think I will add it to his final meal at night.

I am sorry to hear about what happened to your little ones toe. I am sure he gets around just as good as all the other though! Animals are pretty amazing at adapting to life after an injury! We will keep an eye on our ones toes though, I never thought of something like that happening.

We are giving him a little plush mouse cat toy as a teddy. We gave it a wash so once its dry he will have that to snuggle with. :)

At the moment I have been using just a regular syringe for feeding him with. He seems to be doing fine so far and opens up his mouth wide when he see's it.
I have seen the balloon technique used by people on youtube though. Would you be able to inundate me on how to make a syringe like that?

If we do keep him I think we will get another pigeon friend for him as I doubt my three parrots will be very suitable friends for him.

I am sure I can see the signs of pin feathers just beneath the skin on his wings. The kind of look like an in grown hair or blackhead haha. Its sweet to see these little changes.

Thank you everyone for all the information and support you have all been providing!
 

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You need to be careful using towels or wash cloths for a nest, as their claws can get caught in the loops. I have never had any problems with shreds coming off of straw and bothering them. It was probably something else.
You're right in that your parrots wouldn't be suitable companions for the pigeon. Parrots have taken pigeons beaks off.
As far as the syringe, you just cut the end off of it, fill with the food, and cover with a balloon or self adhesive bandage, held on with an elastic band. Cut a small hole for his beak to fit through so that he can eat. Just make sure the food is plunged all the way down to the bandage or balloon, so he will get food and not air. You don't really have to plunge as they eat and swallow. Just make sure that the bottom where the baby is feeding from is full of food, and not air. It's an easy way to feed them. I usually stop them a few times during the feeding just to let them catch their breath.
 

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You're welcome. I always use the self adhesive bandage and stretch that over the end of the syringe, hold it on with an elastic band, and cut a hole in it. Works fine, so whatever you can find will work. Just want something with some stretch to it.
 

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Discussion Starter · #13 ·
Hi everyone, I thought i would just post an update on our baby pigeon.

He has grown a lot over the past few days! It has been really exciting to see his pin feathers emerge! Although I think he is a bit behind in development compared to most 2 week old pigeons I see on the internet.

I have began to leave his heat rock off for parts of the day and he always seems to maintain a hot body temperature without it. Does he still need to have heat provided? Its summer where I am.


We have incorporated baby apple puree and apple cider into some of his meals which he seems to like.

What age should I begin offering food other than baby bird formula?

I have uploaded some current pics of him and also a picture of when we first got him.

Thanks
 

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Oh he's looking super and growing well. I think hand reared babes are always smaller than parent reared ones but they do catch up once they start eating seeds on their own. My three ferals are the same size as the town ferals now and they are 6, 5 and 4 and a bit months old - in fact the youngest is the largest of all three and very sturdy like his dad was. It may not have been the hay that caused the toe problem, it can even be a human hair that does it but whether coincidence or not I never used it again, I find the shredded cardboard is fine and it's very easy to take out daily soiled areas without pulling out a whole bunch of other stuff too. Definitely keep him warm until his feathers come through, mum and dad would and it also aids food digestion. I always knew if I should increase my temps purely by how long it was taking for the crops to empty, a good temp means faster digestion and ready for the next feed. I could feed more often if they were warm enough.
Looks like you're doing a super job with him and you'll undoubtably fall in love, which I expect you have already. Sweet little baby.
 

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Discussion Starter · #17 ·
Hi this is Tash, I'm also helping to raise this little squab. He is growing really well. It is exciting and makes me quite proud of his development! I am looking forward to seeing his colouring as there seems to be white and grey coming out on the feather tips! It is incredible to see how much he has grown in such a short time. I have taken photos and videos each day to capture his growth. It is so cute to see him walk/waddle. He is really settling into a routine. He has developed some habits that is almost like communication for us. For instance, he will sit down and shake his head side to side after his meal, and this means he is ready for bed! He loves to snuggle in my neck! We are just so happy he has made it so far. At the beginning it was quite shaky for him but he seems to have a will to live and appears to be thriving! We are so happy and have very much had our hearts stolen by him. We love him so much.
 

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Discussion Starter · #19 ·
Hi everyone,

The last few days our little piggy has been trying to peck at things. The other day he tried getting an ant but most of the time he will try at a freckle or a piece of lint. I am just wondering when the best time is to introduce him to food other than formula? He will be 3 weeks and one day old on the 12/11/16.

His feathers are continuing to grow and he is able to lift them up and down now. However we are worried about a little wrinkle under his chin that looks red and swollen. Is this a sign of something serious? We are thinking it is inflammation from some food residue?
 

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Very cute. You can look way down his throat with a small flashlight, and see if there is anything down there. Also, if the feathers under his chin don't start filling in within the next week, or it looks very red or a lump forms, it could be a sign of canker, which can be pretty common. If that be the case, then treating with for canker would be needed. Meetronidazole works well.

As far as weaning him over to seed, that can be done now. Just sprinkle some seed on a towel or something under him, and let him explore. He will peck at it and will learn to pick up seed. Once he starts doing that, it's a good idea to get him drinking water. Gently dip his beak into a small cup of tepid water, but not over the nostrils. Do this several times a day, and he will learn. When you sprinkle seed around him, don't let him over do, particularly if he isn't drinking yet. He can pack his crop with seed and then not be able to pass it. Just put a little down and let him practice. If you do this before feeding him, he will be even more likely to pick it up. I know some start mixing seed in with their formula, but by letting him pick it up himself, it works just as well, and helps him to learn to peck at seed. All my first babies learned that way at about 3 weeks old.
 
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