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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I have only had my pigeons since last november...so i don't have a lot of experience with them. i have had two squabs born and doing fine about 2 weeks old now. well i had two more born 2 days ago. one of the parents left the loft and didn't come back, that was last night. when my husband went to feed them this morning the babies were dead with their necks cut, like they had been cut or bitten...help!!! would the other parent done this? or another pigeon in the loft? Thanks for any help...

marie
 

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I have only had my pigeons since last november...so i don't have a lot of experience with them. i have had two squabs born and doing fine about 2 weeks old now. well i had two more born 2 days ago. one of the parents left the loft and didn't come back, that was last night. when my husband went to feed them this morning the babies were dead with their necks cut, like they had been cut or bitten...help!!! would the other parent done this? or another pigeon in the loft? Thanks for any help...

marie
The loft should be shut and no critters should beable to get in, the parent birds need to be in the loft and NOT LET OUT, when they have eggs and or young in the nest, when the babies are weaned then the parent birds can be let out again and dummy eggs can be used. sounds like you need to shut the loft up and critter proof it. and yes other birds can harm the young if they are able to get in the nest box with the babies, only pairs should be in the breeding area as a single bird can cause problems.
 

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I have only had my pigeons since last november...so i don't have a lot of experience with them. i have had two squabs born and doing fine about 2 weeks old now. well i had two more born 2 days ago. one of the parents left the loft and didn't come back, that was last night. when my husband went to feed them this morning the babies were dead with their necks cut, like they had been cut or bitten...help!!! would the other parent done this? or another pigeon in the loft? Thanks for any help...

marie
I don't think another bird would have done it. What sort of loft do you have? It sounds like it's an open loft where the birds can come and go as the please? Or did you let them out? It actually sounds like some sort of animal got hold of the babies.
 

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you said that ONLY the necks were cut? that sounds like an animal of sorts. I think it may have been another pigeon, because any other animal (cat, dog, raccoon, etc.) would have eaten it...but im not shure. Unless there was something wrong with the babys then the parents wouldnt hurt them, even if there is something wrong, the parents usually care for them, sometimes abandon them. As Spirit Wings said, the loft should be locked up at all times so nothing can get in.
 

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Well, with out a Doubt, if the throats were Chewed on, it is Rats, Tighten up your Loft!
I lived in a House with two other People, we were all in the pet Biz., I had Diamond Doves, and Zebra Finches Breeding in the Basement. He Decided to Raise Rats, Needless to Say He had no idea on how to keep them in their Cages. Two neat piles of Dead Birds stacked in the Crawl space, one of Zebra Finches, one of Diamond Doves. ***** some times Go on Killing Sprees, but they Almost always eat some of what they Kill. Rats, Weasels, and Mink, enjoy Feeding on the Blood... Dave
 

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Discussion Starter · #6 ·
yes my loft is an open loft..our birds come and go as they please and there is always one parent with the babies and several different kinds of pigeons mixed in one loft...but i figured if it was a predator, they would have eaten them or been more gruesome. to nice and neat...like it was clipped by a beak or sharp object...the other squabs were not touched nor were any of the birds
 

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yes my loft is an open loft..our birds come and go as they please and there is always one parent with the babies and several different kinds of pigeons mixed in one loft...but i figured if it was a predator, they would have eaten them or been more gruesome. to nice and neat...like it was clipped by a beak or sharp object...the other squabs were not touched nor were any of the birds
Well, basically, if your loft is open 24/7 with no regiment or restrictions of any kind, it doesn't really matter what did this, unless you are willing to change the way you do things. The only difference in your birds and the ferals are that you feed them and they have shelter for sure, but they surely aren't safe by any means. Whatever did this will do it again and again and again until you do something to stop it. That means closing the loft up at night or getting rid of a bird that may be bullying the others or at least recognizing that another bird is being a bully and try to curb his/her behaviour.
 

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Discussion Starter · #8 ·
after this i temporarily shut them in last night and still let them free range during the day.. is this wrong...they were my dads pigeons and when he pasted away i took them...it was his loft and that is how he raised them..he did not handle them often..he just loved to watch them come and go...food - shelter- they have always been healthy and seemed very social with him..not hand tamed but not afraid of humans either..
the mom of the the 2 week old squabs is very aggressive and i was wondering if it was her that did it..but if figured that she would busy with her own to attack another birds babies...i haven't had a problem with predators because of the cold up here in the north, but now its warming up and i think i will do something to at least keep them safe @ night permanently.
 

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I have only had my pigeons since last november...so i don't have a lot of experience with them. i have had two squabs born and doing fine about 2 weeks old now. well i had two more born 2 days ago. one of the parents left the loft and didn't come back, that was last night. when my husband went to feed them this morning the babies were dead with their necks cut, like they had been cut or bitten...help!!! would the other parent done this? or another pigeon in the loft? Thanks for any help...

marie
When feral pigeons nested on our balcony last year, we came home one day and found the squab out of the nest, dead and missing its head. We think it was a crow, because we had chased a big crow away the previous day. Crows are terrible on baby pigeons if they can get at them. Maybe this was a crow; they often just pinch the heads off, and leave the rest.

-Aggie
 

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after this i temporarily shut them in last night and still let them free range during the day.. is this wrong...they were my dads pigeons and when he pasted away i took them...it was his loft and that is how he raised them..he did not handle them often..he just loved to watch them come and go...food - shelter- they have always been healthy and seemed very social with him..not hand tamed but not afraid of humans either..
the mom of the the 2 week old squabs is very aggressive and i was wondering if it was her that did it..but if figured that she would busy with her own to attack another birds babies...i haven't had a problem with predators because of the cold up here in the north, but now its warming up and i think i will do something to at least keep them safe @ night permanently.

I actually give my young birds open loft every year for about 3 months. During the winter, they are locked up and of course until I get them broke to the loft, they are locked up. There's nothing wrong with open loft as far as I'm concerned. However, IMO, the loft should NEVER be left open at night. I normally put mine out around 9:00 in the morning and by about 6:00 PM or so, they are in the loft ready to roost for the night and I just close up the loft. During the day, they CAN at least get away from anything that might come after them, or at least have a chance, but at night, they are sitting ducks.
I also would recommend that parents of babies or fertile eggs, not be allowed out while incubating and raising their babies.
 

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Discussion Starter · #11 ·
ok well now im concerned even more..just had another squab born in the last hour....should i move her and the baby.....i don't want it to meet the same end as the last ones...do you think it was another animal and locking them up at night is good enough..or do you think the first momma will hurt these new babies
 

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Discussion Starter · #12 ·
i have not let them out free since the last babies died....and they are constantly going to the door to be let out....
 

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i have not let them out free since the last babies died....and they are constantly going to the door to be let out....
If you are going to have an open loft, do not let any babies hatch, they will just suffer, from different things, like the ones you mentioned that are happing in you loft now....simple solution...buy some wooden dummy eggs and replace the real ones with those, they will sit on those for awhile and give up and then lay again, then repeat, you really don't need to let anymore babies hatch and get killed or orphaned....
 

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ok well now im concerned even more..just had another squab born in the last hour....should i move her and the baby.....i don't want it to meet the same end as the last ones...do you think it was another animal and locking them up at night is good enough..or do you think the first momma will hurt these new babies
Well, you can't really move them. The parents will abandon the baby or babies if you do that.
I would THINK that what happened was caused by an animal of some sort, but of course, we have no way of really knowing.
The only thing you can do at this point, is, one, keep the loft closed and the birds inside and two, if you can and have time, try just observing the birds for a while and see if any are acting agressively toward the other birds, particularly the one with babies.
 

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Discussion Starter · #15 ·
now will they act aggressive towards the new parents or just the babies or both? their nest are not close but i will observe and see if its my pushy momma. also how old should the squabs be before i handle them...i would like to make them more tame. also how old should the squabs be before i start letting the parents out again?
 

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now will they act aggressive towards the new parents or just the babies or both? their nest are not close but i will observe and see if its my pushy momma. also how old should the squabs be before i handle them...i would like to make them more tame. also how old should the squabs be before i start letting the parents out again?
I normally don't mess with the babies until I band them, which is around 6 days old. Then after they are banded, I wait until the parents start leaving them alone in the nest, which is around 10 days old or so. At that time, you can pick them up and hold them a few times a day.
I wouldn't let the parents out until the babies are weaned. That's usually around 28 days old.
 

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Discussion Starter · #17 ·
thank you so much..so the babies don't need their parents after 28days? wow!!! so my two oldest squabs will soon be on their own...do both squabs usually live? one seems awful small compared to the first one. how long does it take for the squabs to get used to the loft so they can leave?

thank you so much for all your wisdom
 

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thank you so much..so the babies don't need their parents after 28days? wow!!! so my two oldest squabs will soon be on their own...do both squabs usually live? one seems awful small compared to the first one. how long does it take for the squabs to get used to the loft so they can leave?

thank you so much for all your wisdom
Well, around 28 days..............but that's for LOFT birds and it's not a firm age...depends really on how your set up.......Ferals are a little older than that. If someone doesn't explain why to you, I will later. I'm on my way out the door for a few hours.
And yes, both kids normally live............;)
 

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Discussion Starter · #19 ·
ok thank you....since im here and have time i thought i would ask another question...can i hand tame the new babies? and if so how, just handle them? i've had birds before like cockateils and they were all tame and very loving birds...ie: would give kisses would sleep in laps and would fly to me and land on my shoulder or hand...can i get these little guys to do the same? my husband is building a better loft for them so i can shut them in without worries, he says he will have it done in a couple of days...then i will start moving the other birds into that one. just wait for the babies...i would love to get into pigeons more and learn more if i can get the results like i did with my house birds. it would make it even more rewarding to breed and watch them..
 

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Discussion Starter · #20 ·
ok one of my two week old squabs died today....well i have been down there observing i noticed the smallest of the two wasn't doing well...half the size of the other one...well just finished doing evening chores and it was dead...my daughter wanted me to perform cpr...i tried rubbing it and warming it up a little, but it wouldn't respond...it is like 38 degrees outside...and windy...but they are sheltered from the wind....i think if any of them survive im done with the babies...to much heartache....where do i buy those fake eggs.
 
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