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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I have a pigeon that was fed by mother only 10 days. I started feeding at that time and after about two weeks, he became sick with diarrhea. I started adding Show and Grow pellets to the grain and after a few days he was better. I have continued to feed a mixture of grain, pellets, a a little grit, and he is now about six weeks old. My problem is: How do I get him to start eating on his own? I peck at his food with my finger and he picks it up, but tosses it and may eat one piece of grain out of 25 tries. If I had to guess by his physical appearance, I would say he is about three weeks behind in growth. A friend suggested I not feed him at all and let him get hungry, which I did yesterday, but then he developed the watery diarrhea again. So, another person suggested I go back to the pellets and leave the grain for him to pick up on his own. I did go back on the pellets today, and already I think I see a difference in his droppings.

If anyone has any suggestions (and I'm sure there are a lot of things one can do, but I'm new at this and at a loss), I would really appreciate your input. I know this is a learning experience and realize I have a long way to go. I just don't want to feed him too long and have that become another problem.

Thanks for your help.
 

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My suggestion is that if he appears to be 3 weeks behind in growth, then he may be 6 weeks old "technically", but not "really".........can you post a picture if the bird?
I would keep doing what you're doing and keep at it with the "pecking"....he'll get it eventually, but if he's behind, it may take a little longer than normal.
At what age did you start trying to get him to eat seeds?
You know, if allowed to do so, the parents will begin teaching their babies how to eat at around 18 days old. That's when I put my babies in the floor to learn plus, they've been watching Dad and Mom from day one.....usually by 3 weeks old, they are eating quite a bit on their own.
Doesn't do you any good now, but, the younger they start to learn, then earlier they pick up what we want them to do.
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
Thanks so much for responding. I wanted to be as brief as possible and it appears I left out some vital information. The dad never sat on the eggs and never fed the one that hatched out...he had another family...so it was left to the mom to do all the feeding. I think she did fine until that same male coached her into sitting on more eggs, at which time she abruptly left this baby at about 10-12 days of age. That's when I took over, initially with the bird baby formula and then onto the seeds and pellets. I am keeping him in the house and, of course, he is becoming quite spoiled. I just don't want to do anything that will be detrimental to him while at the same time trying to get him on his own. I don't have a problem with continuing to feed him as you suggest. I think your evaluation of his "real" age is probably right on target.

Thanks again!
 

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I understood that you have raised this bird. I was just saying for general purposes, that we seem to get a few folks here and there that have a hard time weaning hand raised babies, and I truly believe that PART of the problem is that a lot of people keep up with the Kaytee and Kaytee only for far too long. IMO, we should try to mimic what the parents would do if we can and that means introducing seeds to these babies long before their 2 1/2 to 3 weeks old.
You're doing just fine though. ;)
 

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Maybe you can give the baby smaller seeds such as millet and milo. My babies can handle those easy unlike peas, corn or sunflower seeds. You can also let other pigeons demonstrate how to eat. Those babies will learn to imitate. When babies watch their parents eat/drink, they learn.
 
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