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Discussion Starter · #1 · (Edited)
Hi,

New here and just stumbled across your forum.

This evening we noticed something splashing around in our pond, and rescued a young, thoroughly soaked woodpigeon. A parent was in a tree nearby but flew off as soon as we appeared. The youngster was so cold and disorientated he couldn't even stand. My hubby keeps pigeons anyway, so we put him in our "sick bird" box, well wrapped in some hay and left him a while, thinking the shock might be too much for him. In the meantime, hubby climbed up the sycamore tree where we think the nest is, but couldn't get high enough to find it. Besides, he'd likely fall out again anyway! We have cats and a lot of local foxes, so leaving him out is not really a safe option.

We checked on him after an hour and he was up and walking around, flapping in defence when he tried to pick him up. He looks to be around the 18 day mark, according to the very helpful photos on their development I have found on this site. He has full feather (no trace of yellow down), but is not feeding himself or flying yet. I have raised a young woody before, but passed to a local lady with an aviary once he got to flying stage, and she prepared for his release. She has since given this up due to other commitments. My only other local option is RSPCA and unfortunately I don't think they seem very geared up for wildlife. We are in Cornwall.

I was wondering, as we have a number of pet pigeons ourselves (both ex-racers and fancy varieties), who are let out daily to free-range in the garden, would we be able to "rehabilitate" the youngster into flying alongside them once he is old enough? He could choose to go back to the wild population here or stay with our pet birds.

In the meantime he is getting a "soup" of small grained pigeon mix, with a "syringed" water chaser, and has food in his box incase he decides its time to start helping himself.

Any advice much appreciated,

Thank you
 

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I was wondering, as we have a number of pet pigeons ourselves (both ex-racers and fancy varieties), who are let out daily to free-range in the garden, would we be able to "rehabilitate" the youngster into flying alongside them once he is old enough? He could choose to go back to the wild population here or stay with our pet birds.
Actually, that sounds like a good idea. I would usually advise racers to take a juvenile woodie to a sanctuary where they could mix with other woodies before release, but the only one I know of in Cornwall is:

Mousehole Bird Hospital
Raginnis Hill
Mousehole
Penzance
Cornwall
TR19 6SR

Telephone: 01736 731386

http://www.mouseholebirdhospital.org.uk/

We have our woodies in with our other pigeons (ferals, ex-racers, collared doves and a single fancy one).

You can try defrosting peas and corn in boiling water and feeding those to him by and, he should learn to eat those on his own very quickly.

Cynthia
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
Thanks for reply.

I had never thought of the corn and peas trick. I have watch our own young pigeons trying to pick up dry maize and pigeon peas and they always find them so fiddly to start with. I'm sure thats why "squeakers" go on begging from their parents even when they are old enough to be feeding themselves - it must be like trying to pick up marbles with chop-sticks!

I'll see how he goes. Thanks for the tip about the Mousehole sanctuary. They are quite a way from us so I might try to get him flying with our birds, but can always use them as a back-up.

Thanks :)
 
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