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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Greetings,

I rescued a young pigeon from the barn today. All of its feathers are in, except for some bare patches under its wings, and it has a light sprinkle of yellow hairy looking feathers on its head and sticking out from the big feathers on its body.

It fell from a high beam and was wandering around the barn floor. I was afraid the barn cats would get it, so I put it into a small wire cage generally used for chicken babies. It's currently resting on some hay on top of some news paper. The cage is sitting on a chair in the living room.

A friend of mine is currently raising a baby crow so she shared a bit of her baby bird formula. I was only able to get about three drops into its mouth with a syringe and it ate a small earth worm I found under a rock. It's cleaned its feathers a few times, its eyes still look bright and they are a creamy brown color. It's pooped several times and the poop is full of both fluid and black and white material. It hasn't spread it's wings but it keeps fluttering the wings up and down and squeaking.

I'd like to raise the bird up and maybe keep it, but I feel like I need some expert advice. If I released it around here it would probably end up getting shot because the guys around the farm tend to use their pellet guns to clear out the barns when the poop landing on the tractor seats and such starts to irritate them. I'd also like to find someone in my area that I can get help and advice from. I'm near Damascus, Oregon.

Thanks for your help and your time,
Lewella
 

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Please don't feed the baby any more worms. Pigeons don't eat worms. We have a member who is less than 20 miles from you, according to MY map.....LOL....I'm sure she'll be on shortly, if she's not already.
 

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I'm in Portland...give me a call...
 

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Yes...here I am!...20 miles from Damascus!
 

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Discussion Starter · #7 ·
Thank you very much. :)

I've looked at the racing baby site and I believe the pigeon I have is roughly 18-20 days old. There is another baby in the nest but I can't get to it. The baby that is still up there looks bigger and I wonder if it didn't push the smaller one out. It's the only pigeon nest I've found out there, although I know there are at least 3 starling nests on the other side of the barn.

No worms then. ;) I've given it a bird feeding dish like the ones for parrots full of water, but it doesn't seem to be watering itself. I haven't any pigeon food, but would chicken crumble work? I'm limited on funds as far as going out to buy food for it right now.

Thanks again,
Lewella
 

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This is my email to you

Hi there…it’s Charis from Pigeon Talk. I really hoped I would hear from you as there is a lot to raising a baby Pigeon. It’s not especially hard but it is very different from other baby birds.
I don’t know how old the one you have rescued is but it may be appropriate to feed it defrosted corn and peas. I defrost about 3 tablespoons under hot water until they are warm and fully defrosted. I gently open the baby’s beak and pop the pieces at the back of the throat. Each feeding, the baby should be fed 40-50 pieces. Only feed once the crop has emptied. The crop is a bird’s equivalent of our stomach and is located right below the throat. When it’s full, it feels squishy. Generally it takes 3-4 hours for the crop to empty. You never want to add food to the crop if there is already food in it because doing so can cause a bacterial infection which can be fatal.
Hand feeding at first will feel very awkward to you but you will figure it out and so will the baby and it will become easier. This is only a guide but the baby will need to be fed about 3 times a day if you feed the amount I recommended. Soon the baby wil be picking up the corn and peas on it’s own and then it will be time to go to the feed store and buy a Pigeon mix.
Really…I am happy to talk you through this. I done it hundreds of time.
 

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Discussion Starter · #9 ·
This morning the young pigeon started squeaking and rustling its feathers so I got up and fed it 18 pieces of canned peas and 5 pieces of chicken pellet that I halved before feeding. I wasn't sure if I should feed and water at the same time, so I didn't for now. That feeding was around 8 am. I thought maybe I would feed at 8am, Noon, and 4pm if that sounds right?

Now I have frozen corn and peas, which I've gathered are better for the bird.

The baby did try to peck at the crumbled pieces of chicken pellet on the newspaper, but it just picked them up and threw them aside. Opening it's mouth did seem to get a little easier later in the feeding, and after each piece of pea it got very excited. Cute little flapper.

A friend of mine, she's the one raising the baby crow, mentioned that the yellow hairs running down the sides of the top of its head reminded her of the yellow feathers on a Macaroni Penguin's head, so I've taken to calling the pigeon Mac.

Is there a particular way to find out the sex of a pigeon? Or can I tell when the baby is probably only 18-20 days old?

Thanks everyone, specially Charis, I'll keep in touch and hopefully have baby pictures up later today.
 

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This morning the young pigeon started squeaking and rustling its feathers so I got up and fed it 18 pieces of canned peas and 5 pieces of chicken pellet that I halved before feeding. I wasn't sure if I should feed and water at the same time, so I didn't for now. That feeding was around 8 am. I thought maybe I would feed at 8am, Noon, and 4pm if that sounds right?

Now I have frozen corn and peas, which I've gathered are better for the bird.

The baby did try to peck at the crumbled pieces of chicken pellet on the newspaper, but it just picked them up and threw them aside. Opening it's mouth did seem to get a little easier later in the feeding, and after each piece of pea it got very excited. Cute little flapper.

A friend of mine, she's the one raising the baby crow, mentioned that the yellow hairs running down the sides of the top of its head reminded her of the yellow feathers on a Macaroni Penguin's head, so I've taken to calling the pigeon Mac.

Is there a particular way to find out the sex of a pigeon? Or can I tell when the baby is probably only 18-20 days old?

Thanks everyone, specially Charis, I'll keep in touch and hopefully have baby pictures up later today.
Yes, the frozen stuff is better. Too much sodium in the canned peas and other veggies.
Can't know the sex of the pigeon until they're about 5 or 6 months old and then you can only tell by their behaviour OR if the pigeon lays an egg........there's no way to sex a pigeon simply by sight.
I like the name Mac. :D
 

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Discussion Starter · #11 ·
Here is my first attempt to post baby pictures of Mac. Does anyone else have an opinion of how old Mac is? I was guessing 18-20 days.





Also update on feeding: The noon time feeding went much better than the morning feeding. Using frozen corn and peas that I melted in very warm water I fed the baby 40 pieces. Half the feeding the baby picked up pieces from my cupped hand and ate them. After that I tilted a parrot's water cup in front of the baby and it volunteered to take a drink of water.
 

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I'd say you've got the age pretty close. Probably 20 days old at least, maybe even 22.......anyway.......he sure looks like a chunky little fellow. Were the pics AFTER or BEFORE you fed him?
Sounds like you've got the feeding thing down pretty good now. If you need anything, please give Charis a call. She's a FABULOUS gal, not to mention just plain crazy about our pigeon buddies. ;)
Really need to get some pigeon feed for this little one at some point.
 

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Great job!:D:D
Please don't leave the baby outside though. A Hawk could snatch it quicker than you could do a thing about it or a number of other predators.
Remember...I'm here if you need help.
 

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Discussion Starter · #14 ·
These pics were taken right after feeding. But Mac still seems pretty round for such a young pigeon even before feeding. :)

I've been watching the nest where Mac fell from and there is still another baby up there that seems a bit larger than Mac. I've seen the other baby spread it's wings and shake them about, but no flights yet. Mac doesn't spread its wings, just shakes them up and down while squeaking. I think these babies were being parented by a single parent for a while too because I've only seen one adult around the barn in the last couple days and a few more days ago the guys around here did shoot an adult. :(

Thanks for all your help and advice, it's appreciated.
 

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These pics were taken right after feeding. But Mac still seems pretty round for such a young pigeon even before feeding. :)

I've been watching the nest where Mac fell from and there is still another baby up there that seems a bit larger than Mac. I've seen the other baby spread it's wings and shake them about, but no flights yet. Mac doesn't spread its wings, just shakes them up and down while squeaking. I think these babies were being parented by a single parent for a while too because I've only seen one adult around the barn in the last couple days and a few more days ago the guys around here did shoot an adult. :(

Thanks for all your help and advice, it's appreciated.
Yea, it will be a little while before either of them can fly. I've got a baby here about the same age as yours (19 days old today). The earliest I've ever seen one actually fly was 26 days old, but most don't fly that young. More like 32 to 35 days before they even practice.
 

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Discussion Starter · #16 ·
I haven't gotten but a foot away from the baby to take a picture when its outside. I know there are hawks, crows, cats, and coyotes around here that wouldn't hesitate to eat or hurt Mac. The coyotes have even been frightening me a bit lately. (I had one come out of the brush, walk half way across the road and look at me from about 40 ft ahead of me, and then walk back into the brush when I went walking the other day). There is a hawk that flies over our 15 acres every other day or so and every time it is dive bombed by and escorted by at least four crows until it reaches the property line.
 

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Baby Mac is really cute.
 

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Discussion Starter · #18 ·
Yeah, Mac was really adorable when it woke me up this morning at 6:30 am saying it wanted to eat and make it snappy. But I've decided it's a good thing because I really needed to be out weeding my garden early this morning anyway. I weeded for about 45 min. before deciding to rest online. Maybe baby Mac is my new alarm clock. After three kids what's one more baby to wake me up demanding food? My kids are 13 yrs, 5 yrs, and 6 months.

This morning Mac ate about 45 pieces of frozen corn and peas with about 5 pieces of pea sized frozen carrot squares, defrosted in very warm water. All of the feeding Mac picked up the pieces from my cupped hand. I also noticed that the parent bird was feeding the remaining baby in the nest in the barn about the same time this morning.

Are carrots ok for pigeons? I did check a few lists of foods that are poisonous or that will make pigeons sick but I didn't see carrots listed on them.
 

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Carrots are great. I feed mine fresh minced carrots and they love them....just make sure the pieces are not too big.
 

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Discussion Starter · #20 ·
Great! :) I just saw something about introducing carrot juice to birds too. Maybe down the line I'll try that. We have a watermelon at the house, has anyone tried to give their pigeons watermelon or is it ok for them?
 
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