Pigeon-Talk banner
1 - 20 of 24 Posts

·
Registered
Joined
·
14 Posts
Discussion Starter · #1 · (Edited)
Hi everyone I'd like some help please. We rescued a young wood pigeon just over 2 weeks ago from the ground obviously been attacked by something his head had been plucked and also wing feathers missing.His crop was full but he was just too vulnerable in a dog walking spot. We had our 2 with us but luckily they're sight hounds so wear muzzles or they would've had him. We brought him home fed him defrosted peas and corn got him to drink and placed him in a dog cage in the garden lined with towels. Made him a perch from a walking stick and use a bench cover to keep rain off him and cover him over completely at night. He's looking so much better and was eating well. He was taking seed and sunflower hearts and a few hydrated meal worms himself. As he's getting bigger he's trying to fly more but can't because of the missing feathers I assume and he's become non interested in his food. He'd been taking them quite happily from me but I'm having to place them in his beak again now the last couple of days. He's very relaxed with us both and will fall asleep on us but I'm worried he's bored in his cage without other birds. We let him wander around and it seems he's pecking at everything to eat like he is hungry but not pecking the food. He will pick it up chomp it a couple of times in his beak then just drop it. I'm getting worried as I've become so attached to him and want him to be ok but when his feathers grow back and he can fly he needs to be able to feed himself in the wild. We think he's about 6 weeks of age. Any advice will be greatly appreciated I live in Manchester u.k. also can someone tell me how to post a pic of him I don't know how to do it thanks. Oh and 1 other thing he's been picking bits of stone and gravel up which I panicked about 1st but then saw online this is normal to create gastroliths in their gizzard but 1 he picked up looked abit big to me but he got it down before I had chance to get it off him. That was about 3 or 4 days ago and this morning on his perch he looked like he was trying to get something up I read they vomit them out when they're smooth. Could the piece of gravel possibly be the issue if it's too big affecting his appetite ? Figured out pics I think 1st post is when we'd just found him on the 21st June 2nd is how he looks now alot better !
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,160 Posts
Among wild / feral pigeons, vitamin A deficiency is common. Vitamin A is crucial for wound healing, and the lack of it delays healing significantly. Small bits of chopped bell/chili peppers or carrots are both excellent sources of vitamin A and beta-carotene. Red peppers have by far the most of both and even a single tiny bit per day will provide all the bird needs.

Have you been able to look inside the bird's beak and esophagus for any signs of common illness such as canker (yellow growths) or yeast infection (white) -- everything inside the beak and throat should be soft pink, and if not it's a symptom of illness.

In the second picture, the bird looks like he has food in his crop -- in which case he has definitely been eating something. Anything that the bird can swallow can also be thrown-up and out provided it isn't a shape that complicates things (coiled wire for instance), so I wouldn't worry about the bit of gravel.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
14 Posts
Discussion Starter · #4 ·
Hi there we've just tried him with some carrot but he spat it out I'll try him again we just can't understand why he seems to have lost interest in food. I have looked inside his mouth and it looks fine all noce and pink but I'll have another check aswell. He does seem to be preening his feathers quite aggressively too and I'm worried he's damaging them. Is there an easy way to encourage him to eat again ? He's still picking up sunflower hearts but at 1st he just wolfed them down whole now it looks like hes trying to break them 1st and when he can't he just drops them and sometimes he sort of knocks his beak through them it looks like in a temper because he's frustrated he can't break them. Do you have any idea how long his feathers will take to grow back ? He's lost 1 primary the innermost 1 closest to his elbow and a section of secondaries next to them and also the layer above them I'm not sure what they're called ill post another pic to show and also that 2nd pic he does have food in his crop it was last night after if fed him but as far as I know he's only eating what I'm actually putting into his beak not on his own anymore.
Hand Sleeve Gesture Finger Wrist
Bird Grey Beak Stock dove Road surface
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,160 Posts
In the photos in which he has pin-feathers he looks very young, maybe four weeks old, or he's been a bit malnourished. Pigeon parents feed the squabs pigeon crop-milk (which is about half protein and half fat without carbohydrates) exclusively for about 5 to 7 days. They then feed crop-milk along with some seeds, and the amount of seeds increases while crop-milk decreases. The young birds don't produce enough digestive enzymes, so the parents also supply those as part of each feeding. The parents also pass friendly probiotic bacteria to the young birds, and it is those bacteria which digest the carbohydrates in the seeds. A young bird without a healthy probiotic community in its intestines may not be able to digest seeds thoroughly, and may become malnourished despite eating well.

There are two things that would help in that situation. Feed the bird crumbled hard-boiled egg along with seeds because it is very close to the nutrients provided by pigeon crop-milk and has almost no carbohydrates at all -- it's easy for the bird to digest. Also add a tiny bit of yogurt with "live cultures" mixed onto seeds to supply probiotics to help the bird digest the carbs from the seeds.

Feathers will definitely grow back, and a more nutritious diet will help that process.

If you aren't already treating the wound on his head with any topical medication, try covering the wound with a light application of turmeric and water paste, and / or raw honey -- both are naturally antibacterial and help to speed wound healing.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
7,257 Posts
Start feeding the defrosted peas again. Can you get a handrearing formula for baby parrots? You can make small pea sized balls by mixing the powder with a little bit of water and also handfeed to him. Also get grit. This helps with digestion and contains minerals they need.

He is much too young to be released anyway. Are you planning on doing a soft release in your garden? He needs to spend time outside in an aviary to get used to the area and also a backup food supply after releasing.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
14 Posts
Discussion Starter · #8 · (Edited)
We estimated he was around 4 weeks when we brought him home and that was 13 days ago so now he's about 6 weeks. He still has some gold threads in his feathers but has lost alot and he's still squeaking but not eating when we offer it which is upsetting because he was doing last week. Also when other wood pigeons come down ibto the garden he squeaks at them asking for food. So is that age ok for me to do the egg and yoghurt and baby parrot food yes and is the yolk the best part to give him ?. We didn't know whether to put anything on his head it was abit wet when we found him but it's dried up perfectly and there is no sign of infection so we didn't want to wet it and weren't sure what would be suitable as It looks like the skin has been totally removed and you can see his skull but it doesn't bother him he scratches it regularly. Will the flesh grow back do you think it's hard to tell of its closing up or not. Would I find baby parrot food online or at Pets At Home I know they have the crushed oyster shells I have looked and will get some of that they should have baby parrot food too shouldn't they? Are we talking weeks or months for the feathers to grow back ? And can he damage his current 1s with aggressive preening ? He is outside in the garden in a dog cage I have no access to an aviary unfortunately. He's had a few wanders in the garden supervised. He has had a couple of small flights but he can't get height because of the missing feathers. We aren't quite sure yet how we will release him as there are cats around here he is safe in the cage but wouldnt be loose. We have thought about taking him to the fields in a box we live close to arable fields for him to practise but did think when he can fly we will release him here and so he can get food but im just worried at the minute because he cant feed himself he was doing but he's stopped and we dont know why. That's why I am having an issue feeding him seed because he's not taking it anymore I could coat the sunflower hearts in yoghurt before I pop them in or probably the peas too or balls of baby parrot food. I weighed him yesterday and he's 340grams he'd put 50grams on since i weighed him 6 days ago is that good or is that not enough it doesnt seem much to me we arent sure how much food he should be having weight wise like how many leas or sunflower hearts and how many times a day. Apologies for the long post but there's so much I don't know
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
7,257 Posts
Any large petshop will stock a handraising formula. He was scalped by other pigeons, the feathers will probably never grow back. It's also healing and must be itching a lot. If you can get an Aloe vera leaf, then scrape out some gel and cover the wound with that.

The problem with these youngsters, is that one can't just dump them somewhere and expect them to survive. They won't know where to find food as they never had the chance to follow the parents around to teach them these survival skills.

A soft release from your garden will be a better option. He will probably stick around and will prefer to sleep inside your home.

50 gr weightgain sounds good. Can you maybe post a photo of his droppings? That will indicate if there's some health issues or not.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
14 Posts
Discussion Starter · #10 ·
Any large petshop will stock a handraising formula. He was scalped by other pigeons, the feathers will probably never grow back. It's also healing and must be itching a lot. If you can get an Aloe vera leaf, then scrape out some gel and cover the wound with that.

The problem with these youngsters, is that one can't just dump them somewhere and expect them to survive. They won't know where to find food as they never had the chance to follow the parents around to teach them these survival skills.

A soft release from your garden will be a better option. He will probably stick around and will prefer to sleep inside your home.

50 gr weightgain sounds good. Can you maybe post a photo of his droppings? That will indicate if there's some health issues or not.
Oh so you think pigeons did that ? We assumed it was a magpie. Would they have pulled out his wing feathers aswell? He wasn't in an open place it was beside a pub carpark on a path where people regularly
Walk dogs thats how we found him. We could see the nest but couldnt reach it to put him back in was too high and because of the injury we took him home. Well I did think that we can't just let him go anywhere he's already having small flights inside the kitchen when we feed him he can get up almost a metre to reach the worktop fairly easily now and he did try to fly out the window but it was only slightly ajar. He sits quite happily in my hands while we carry him to and from the cage. I don't really think he could sleep in here as we have the 2 dogs. But i am concerned when the nights get colder will he be warm enough outside. I do cover him completely with a waterproof bench cover so he feels safeer. There is a silver birch tree just behind our back garden gate. I said itd be nice if he roosted in there when he finally flies away. My main worry is he's taking food from me again now and i get them in his beak easily but he needs to be able to eat himself off the floor or a bird table or he'll starve. I will take a pic of his poop and post it as I said sometimes they are nice and firm when he's been chilling in his cage and when i'm feeding him or he's wandering around and trying to fly they are quite watery don't know if that's excitement or because he's having plenty peas and drinking water but I will try to take a couple of diferent 1s tp show you and post them today. So the baby bird formula is suitable for his age then and should I feed it in addition to peas and sunflower hearts or instead of and for how long should I feed him that he's about 6 weeks old now. I've just done his brekkie and he had about 40 peas i'll get some sunflower hearts down him too last night he took about 30 peas and 140 sunflower hearts i have no idea if thats enough or not ? I did give him some carrot last night too and I'll get some red pepper when I get the bird formula and some live yoghurt too that was recommended .
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
7,257 Posts
Sounds like you are feeding him enough, but he should be able to eat all types of seeds and fly well before releasing.

Pigeons will scalp babies that are not their own, esp if the babies wander into their territory.

The handfeeding formula has all the nutrients he needs. You can feed in addition to the peas. Has he started drinking water?
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
14 Posts
Discussion Starter · #12 ·
Oh no i dont know what to do i was taking him back outside and he just flew up onto the gate I ran up and went to get him and he flew again over towards the school at the back I ran out and I can't find him will he come back do you think if he's hungry or thirsty ? I'm heartbroken now i'm so worried about him because he flew from the garden will he be able to find his way back he is drinking fine I'm so upset
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
14 Posts
Discussion Starter · #14 ·
We've just got back now we took binoculars and looked all around the direction he flew we went up the back street both ways along the lane and along where the school is past the houses it opens out onto the canal and fields my husband said he could've gone anywhere I'm absolutely heartbroken. Will he remember where he flew from ? If he's hungry will he be able to find his way back here ? Ive left his cage door open and food and water on top of the cage. I've alos put a post on my local facebook page i just don't know what to do
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
14 Posts
Discussion Starter · #15 ·
My only hope if he doesnt come back is tht some other kind person will find him and take him in like i did. I can't believe how upset I am I had got so attached to him
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
14 Posts
Discussion Starter · #17 ·
I've just been out again looking for him I am devastated I feel so guilty for letting him fly off he just took me by surprise my husband says he maybe in the school grounds at the back of our house we have walked all around there but we cant see it all would he be able to find his way back here if he wanted to if he'd gone further away? Luckily he had just had 40 peas but only about 5 sunflower hearts and he'd had a drink too I'd only carried him outside while my husband fed the dogs in the kitchen then I was going to take him back in for more hearts that's when it happened. I should've put him back in the cage instead of just holding him so he couldn't fly away I feel so so guilty😥 i am praying he comes back here when he's hungry as he won't know where to find food or water for himself that's my worry and also predators and him finding somewhere safe to sleep and he'll probably head for more pigeons and I'm worried they'll attack him I am driving myself crazy with worry. I have put his water dish and food on top of his cage I am praying he comes back I love him as much as if he was my actual pet. I knew he'd be back to the wild 1 day and he wasn't here to stay but he wasn't ready. If he doesn't come back and I can't find him is there any small chance he could survive by himself ? Or have i sentenced him to death by letting him fly off.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
14 Posts
Discussion Starter · #19 ·
There are quite alot in the school grounds dotted about the perimeter. There were alot more at the back of us but they've all been cut down apart from a sycamore so he probably would have gone into those if they were still there i wish he'd just flown into the sycamore but he didn't i have looked and theres also alot around the back street and all up the lane too there are trees everywhere I did try to look as much as i could while I was walking past them looking for him. Will he be able to find his way back if he wants to ? He did trust us without a doubt and seemed quite happy here he spent hours sat on my lap he'd sort of spread himself out when he'd been fed while i stroked him and he'd go to sleep. He also used to squeak at me too. That's worrying me if he squeaks at other pigeons, i know he will do, if they'll attack him I'm so worried about him i won't sleep tonight. I'm just watching out of the window now incase he comes back
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
14 Posts
Discussion Starter · #20 ·
He's only done small flights before this a few feet off the ground or along like up onto the kitchen unit then from there he flew across and up to the top of the microwave that's like 6 feet away and 2 and a half foot above the worktop on the other side of the kitchen it's not a big kitceh so would he have the ability or stamina to go far ?
 
1 - 20 of 24 Posts
Top