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Hi all,

I posted a couple of months ago about adopting a male pigeon for my female in the hopes they would either mate or at least be friends, as I had one female on her own that was a rescue and she was lonely. However when the female got too close he would coo and try to peck her, and if it was on the floor he would chase her a little until she left him alone. I was told it is normal driving behaviour, and that they should be okay after a little while.

I'm new to keeping pigeons as pets, so I'm still learning a lot, and I keep finding a lot of conflicting information online about how aggressive is too aggressive, whether or not this is normal and will stop, etc. It's really difficult to know.

These chases and pecks have become more aggressive. He will chase her round the room/cage and really go for the back of her neck. Today, there were two particularly bad instances; one where he chased her round the floor of the cage pecking and biting so hard, pulling out a couple of feathers, until she just gave up running, plopped to the floor, and he stood on her back still pulling at her neck/head until I intervened. It didn't look like they mated while he was stood on her though. The second instance, she went to sit next to him on top of the nesting box (she likes him, I can see that, she isn't aggressive with him. She even tried to lean down for some sort of kiss yesterday while she was on top of the nesting box and he was inside looking out), and he went for her again and she fell off the edge but he was still holding on so she was stuck and my partner had to intervene. He's also been chasing her around the room a lot and trying to peck today. When he coos at her, it doesn't seem like he's courting her, it seems like he's either telling her to leave him alone while he's sat in his fave spot in the cage, or he's doing it while chasing her.

I just want to know if this is normal, or whether I should be very concerned. Because currently, I'm very concerned about the safety of my female pigeon.

Extra info: these pigeons are definitely a male and female (and he is really big as he's a king pigeon I think, or something similar at least). They are also not the same breed, as I mention I think he is a king, but the female I'm not sure, I think she is something like a tippler. I am unsure as they are both rescues. Though I haven't seen much about pigeons only liking their own breed, but if that's a real thing it'd be great to know. Though, if the male is like this with this female, will he be like this with others too?

Any help is greatly appreciated!
 

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You first need to keep them seperate. Keep him in a cage seperate from her but they should still see each other. After a week, start letting him come out for short periods of time and see how it goes.
 

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You first need to keep them seperate. Keep him in a cage seperate from her but they should still see each other. After a week, start letting him come out for short periods of time and see how it goes.
Thanks for the help! We'll definitely be doing that, we're building the old cage up today. We did keep them separate for a short while before but maybe it wasn't long enough. I hope this works!
 

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Another idea might be to get another hen for your hen, instead of a cock, so you don't end up with babies too. Kings, like some of our modenas, can be agressive or have attitude problems. We have one cock that is agressive with hens, so we paired him with a hen with as much attitude and they get along pretty well. Maybe the longer pairing in adjacent cages mentioned above will help them too. We did have a hen modena hook up with a homer, so you might get eggs from them eventually. Hopefully the adjacent cages for a couple weeks helps your situation.
 

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Another idea might be to get another hen for your hen, instead of a cock, so you don't end up with babies too. Kings, like some of our modenas, can be agressive or have attitude problems. We have one cock that is agressive with hens, so we paired him with a hen with as much attitude and they get along pretty well. Maybe the longer pairing in adjacent cages mentioned above will help them too. We did have a hen modena hook up with a homer, so you might get eggs from them eventually. Hopefully the adjacent cages for a couple weeks helps your situation.
Hadn't considered getting another hen but that's a good idea if this side by side cage thing doesn't work. I'll wait and see. Thank you for the advice!
 

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Most breeders separate hens and cocks in the winter to prevent breeding during that time, and in the lofts I've visited there isn't much fighting when separate. So hen with hen should remove the breeding drive and thus a quieter loft and less fighting. Two hens might argue for a couple days to get their pecking order, but it won't be constant breeding stuff. Lastly, the side by side cages is what we do to pair up our hens and cocks for breeding. Once they get used to each other they shouldn't fight as strangers but there will be breeding driving and such. Good luck with your plan.
 

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Most breeders separate hens and cocks in the winter to prevent breeding during that time, and in the lofts I've visited there isn't much fighting when separate. So hen with hen should remove the breeding drive and thus a quieter loft and less fighting. Two hens might argue for a couple days to get their pecking order, but it won't be constant breeding stuff. Lastly, the side by side cages is what we do to pair up our hens and cocks for breeding. Once they get used to each other they shouldn't fight as strangers but there will be breeding driving and such. Good luck with your plan.
I only have these two pigeons, they're both rescues and live indoors with me and my partner, though we're building an aviary in spring. So a second female is something I'd consider once the aviary is built. But I'd like them to be a pair as they are the only two pigeons we have so it would be good for them to get along (it's also more convenient for us if they are a pair), not necessarily for breeding. I have fake eggs just in case. I'm hoping at the very least that by keeping them apart for a while, they will get on better when being let out together, even if they don't pair.
 
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