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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I have found an injured juvenile wood pigeon in my garden yesterday and don't know what to do with it for the best. I think it may have fallen from the nest, its wing is certainly damaged, however it's difficult to tell if an animal has had hold of it or the injury has occurred as a result of falling. NOt sure of exact age, it hasn't got the white marks on its neck, but it's old enough to feed alone. I've currently got it in my shed, where I have set up a box with newspaper in, but the pigeon seems to be happier roosting on plantpots and an old chair in there. It's got water and wild bird seed (which it has eaten loads of!), and i've also given it some sprouted nyger seed. Its poos seem reasonably normal, although I have to say I'm no expert... I'm very concerned about its wing, my husband seems to think it might be broken and if so we both wonder if it will get better without any vet intervention. It can flutter its wings, but the damaged one seems to be hanging down a bit and husband says there is blood underneath. I'm buoyed up by the amount of food its eaten, as at least it's got an appetite. Can anyone give any advice, please? I'm in west yorkshire.
This really is a wonderful forum, it's fantastic to know that all you people care. Thank you.
 

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It wouldn't have fallen from the nest and hurt itself if it is old enough to eat. I am wondering whether it escaped from a sparrowhawk or from some other predator.

Can you provide a photo?

Which is your nearest city? There might be a wildlife rescue centre near you that could have a look at it...they can be more knowledgeable that vets about injuries and the effect injuries on birds.

This is a list of the sanctuaries that I know of that treat pigeons...I haven't found much in Yorkshire, but if you are near a county border have a look at the adjoining county:

Pigeon and Dove Rescue UK resources





Cynthia
 

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Hi Cachacacha,



Yes...sounds more like the youngster had escaped a preditor of some sort anyway, Aerial or Terrestrial...and if so, he should be on an Antibiotic regimen for staying off what can easily be a lethal systeminc infection from either.

So...I would say, if possible, find local Rehabber, or sympathetic Vet of some kind...ideally, in either case, one who is competent with Birds.

See about the Wing then, and if it needs to be 'set' and stabalized...and, begin the course of antibiotics.

These kinds of systemic infections are often lethal, and by day three it is getting too late, even if the Bird still appears to be normal...day four, the Bird sinks like-a-stone.

Since you do not know when the injury/predation occurred, I would say, make haste.


Good luck!


Phil
Lv
 

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Discussion Starter · #4 ·
Hello and thank you so much for your replies. I've looked at the list of pigeon friendly rescue centres and have been in touch with the one in Sheffield, however unfortunately they don't operate anymore. They did direct us to a one that they knew of in Wakefield, but unfortunately they aren't going anymore either. I rang our local vets and they said that they would not intervene (ie. treat) other than to euthanise - we made the decision to go to see them this evening however weren't able to get in, so my husband will go tomorrow morning. We are hoping that the vet will tell us that a recovery is possible and that we will be able to care for it in our shed until it is completely better - if the vet doesn't feel this is an option then I don't really know what we can do. On a positive note, he looks pretty bright today - we tried him in a large rabbit run so he could get some fresh air and he tried to fly a couple of times, but just doesn't seem able to get off the ground. He seemed very interested when I was cooing at him and did a little squeek at one point - the first sound I've heard him make! everynow and again he opens his month, is this a sign of anything do you think? He's still eating well.
 

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Please don't let the vet euthanase him. If you are paying the veterinary fees, surely he can't refuse to treat the bird? I am prepared to share the cost of treatment with you . I have never known an injured pigeon that has not recovered and led a happy life even if it is unreleasable. I once believed a vet that said that a badly injured woodie would be better off euthanased and bitterly regretted it.

Given a little time I should be able to organise transport to a sanctuary.

I am sorry that so many rescue centres are closing. That is the second one on the list that I have heard has closed.

Cynthia
 

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Discussion Starter · #6 ·
Hi Cynthia

You are really very kind. We are going to try calling the rescue in Selby tomorrow morning and hopefully (everything crossed) they won't have closed down and will be able to take him. All being well, my husband will drive over tomorrow, it's a bit of a trek but worth it to hopefully know he will be ok. We'll be sure to leave a donation to help them keep operating. We are hoping that should he recover and be able to be released we'll be able to bring him back here to be released in our garden - we've got a decent woodie population here and they are all well fed.
It is a terrible shame that rescue centres are having to close for whatever reason -I always say if I came into a bit of money I'd love to open something like these places that do such great work.
Thanks for your advice and kindness. I'll keep you posted.
 

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Well, I really hope your lottery dreams come true, the bells would ring in heaven! But to be honest I don't think Lady Luck smiles on altruism! Meanwhile, rescue centres are being persecuted by organisations like Born Free and the RSPCA and even the little "back garden sanctuaries" are being threatened with the licence fee that the Animal Welfare Act has made provision for.:(

Let me know how it goes with Selby, but even if that doesn't work we will keep trying to find somewhere, usually it is possible when there is only a single pigeon involved, though it can take a lot of searching. There are rescuers around that have aviaries and will accept the occasional referral, but don't advertise openly because they will be overwhelmed.

Cynthia
 

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On the question of vets refusing treatment I found this on Hedgehog Help (it was a 2007 post):

I have just recieved a call this morning from the RCVS, who told me that it is common practice for vets in the UK to charge for any consultations or treatments of a wild animal. They are ALSO required, however, to treat any wild animal, and they CANNOT turn any wild animal away from treatment, whether there is any source of payment or not. A wild animal must be treated by a vet.

I also found endorsement of my own view of Companion Care:

After searching locally for a 'wildlife friendly' vet, the best ones, who are great, are Companion Care, they are all around the country and ours treat wildlife on a donation only basis. I always leave them a few quid depending on what needs doing and how helpful they are with a specific case etc.

Have a look here to see if you have one local to you: Companion Care
 

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Discussion Starter · #9 ·
Well, I rang Selby first thing this morning and they said that they are not vets so wouldn't take an injured bird that hadn't been seen and treated by a vet. I was so disappointed as I'd been pinning my hopes since last night on them. I've been in to check up on him before I left for work and I was a bit concerned to see that his chest seems to be losing bulk, it almost seems to be a slightly concave. I feel that I don't really have a choice but to take him to the vets and see what the prognosis is - my husband will take him and, as I said before, the question will be about his chance of a good recovery and, if there is a chance, we will keep him and continue to care for him. I'm very worried about him and really feel as though an expert needs to take a look at him. Thanks for your support - I'll keep you informed.
 

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Discussion Starter · #10 ·
Good News! My husband has had the woodpigeon up to our local vets who have given him a good looking over (free of charge) and have advised that his wing is not fractured! Apparently there is a small puncture wound, which she seemed to think was healing well, considering it must've been done at least 4 days ago. She said he was missing a few feathers which would grow back and suggested that we bathe the wound in a salt water solution. She said he was in pretty good shape and couldn't see why he won't make a good recovery! I feel so relieved and hopeful that we'll save this little bird. We are going to carry on looking after him in our shed and hopefully he'll get completely better and will able to be released in due course. Thanks Cynthia for your support and advice.
 

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The concave chest means that he has no food in his crop. If he isn't eating you can defrost peas and corn in hot water and pop them into his mouth one at a time. Woodies prefer the peas.

Sadly, Voluntary Rescue Centre for Birds and Wildlifehas had to close down due to health problems of Mr Midgely. South Yorkshire Animal Rescue have taken over wildlife care .

South Yorkshire Animal Rescue
South Road
Sheffield
South Yorkshire
England
S6 3TD
01142349656

I also have PM'd you a number of someone in Sheffield that might take him privately.

Cynthia
 

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Discussion Starter · #12 ·
Juvenile woodpigeon - update

Hi

Thought you might be interested in a quick update. The woodpigeon seems to be doing fine, he's still living in the shed, although has been out a couple of times under close supervision to stretch his legs - this goes fine, until it comes to getting him back in when it tends to get a bit stressful for all of us! He really enjoys eating peas and the usual bird seed and seems to be getting stronger all the time. Still not able to fly as yet, but keeps having a bit of a flap, so hopefully one day he'll get lift off. He also seems to be getting quite a few new feathers.
Thanks for the pm Cynthia - hopefully he'll make a full recovery and we'll be able to release him, otherwise I may just give them a call.
 

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Thank you for the update, sounds as if he is responding to your excellent care!

Cynthia
 

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Discussion Starter · #14 ·
Further update...

Hi

I thought you might like to know what's happened since my last update. After having our woodie with us for almost three months, we were sorry to see that she was still not able to fly. We felt that it would be best for her to be with other woodpigeon friends, so I got in touch with South Yorkshire Animal Rescue down in Sheffield who agreed that she could join the rest of their flock in their aviary. We took her down last weekend - the chap that we spoke to was so helpful and obviously had some knowledge of looking after woodpigeons - he told us that they'd successfully released 3 the previous weekend, so that was lovely news. He suggested that a full recovery was still not out of the question and kindly asked, if she was able to be released, perhaps we might like to bring her home - I was over the moon, as that was what i'd hoped for all along. Anyway, we left her there along with a donation - I intend to call them this weekend to find out how she's getting on. So, we've got our shed back, but I do miss having her around - we'd started letting her wander around the garden quite freely, as long as we were there, and she seemed to really enjoy that, pecking away at odds and ends. She's a lovely bird.
Thanks again for all the support you gave me and all the other people who need advice on emergency pigeon care!
 

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That is wonderful news! And it is very thoughtful of you and of them to arrange for her release in your garden if she recovers sufficiently. I hope that she does!

Cynthia
 

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Hi,

You have gone to so much trouble to find the right care for your Woodie friend, that is so heart warming.

Thank you for finding a good place for him and I hope that you are able to see him back one day flying free from your garden.
What is great though is that if that isn't possible in the long run he is at least in the company of other Woodies and can still live a good life with them.

It will seem strange not having him around but how good it must feel to know he's safe. Well done.
Do let us know if he eventually comes back for release. :)

Janet
 
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