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Discussion Starter · #1 · (Edited)
The Balloon Method:


For those of you who ever have or find the need to use an alternative method of feeding young pigeons, this is an EXCELLENT method to feed young squabs. It's more messy, but it's a more "natural" way to feed a young chick with little chance of aspirating or harming the baby like through conventional tube feeding, eye droppers, or other methods. Here are the instructions and photo:

"This involves slicing the thin tip off a syringe (a 20ml should be fine for a 2 week old squab), filling the syringe with formula and taping something over the mouth of the syringe such as a piece of cloth, stretch bandage or a piece cut out of a balloon..

You cut a cross (X) in the fabric and steer the pigeon’s beak into the hole. The squab will start to gobble the food as you depress the plunger gently to pump more food in, mimicking the way the parent feeds his squab. Make the Kaytee a bit thinner than recommended as it thickens in the crop. Feed until the crop is noticeably inflated but not hard. Like a ¾ hot water bottle. I think that for a 2 week old squab that would be 30ml per feed, 3 times a day going up to 40ml per feed when they are 4 weeks old."




*Picture and Instructions courtesy of Cynthia (Cyro51)*
 

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LOL, Brad you just beat me to it. John helped me create a step by step guide which includes Mary's advice on quantities. It is here:

http://community.webshots.com/user/cyro51

If anyone can suggest corrections or improvements I am all ears.

Cynthia
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
Hi, Sorry Cynthia...

I emailed you about getting permission to post this thread but I figured you wouldn't mind. Your link is PERFECT and shows step by step exactly what to do. This is wonderful! Thanks and sorry for not waiting for your reply.
 

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I don't mind at all, Brad, I am really pleased I am just tickled by the fact that we were doing exactly the same thing at the same time!

Cynthia
 

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The "bent spoon" method of feeding squabs

These photos were provided by Diogenese and shows a method of feeding squabs by using a spoon with the sides bent to mimic a pigeon's lower beak:
 

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Help Argh!!

:( Where can you even get those huge 20ml syringes? I went everywhere on my entire lunch break and could not find anything, I wnet Duane Reade Pharmacy, and Rite Aid they only had the the very thin and short syringes :( Ahhhh!
 

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I can't help you there because I am in the UK, but try the "baggie" method instead.

Cynthia
 

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Muffinbabe,
You can get the srynges you need through New England Pigeon Supply. Just type it in and you will find their web page. They also have starter pigeon formula for younger squabs. Good luck.

Ralph :D
 

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having no luck with altenative feeding method

Hello all,

I have read various articles on different methods of feeding squabs as an alternative to tube feeding. We have tried the shot glass, dixie cup, and cut off tube with cloth over the end. No success with any of them. The tube feeding is becoming very difficult (frankly it always has been for me as I am terrified of doing something wrong -am a shaking nervous wreck afterward) . They are I estimate around 5-6 wks old-getting too big to handle alone to feed if both of us are not home together to do it. I know that they should start to wean now. We are skipping the mid morning tube feeding and trying to get them to peck at seed(not very successfully either). We seem to be in a very difficult phase right now with getting them to switch to seeds and getting too big to hold-their weights are approx 357 and 344 grams. Any suggestions would be greatly appreciated. We have ordered Browns developer seed and the red grit from New England Pigeon Supply. So far we have tried to introduce parakeet millet and small bird grit. Any and all help is appreciated. Obviously this is our first attempt at this. Thanks to all.

TerryM and hubby
 

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Hi Terry,

Do they pick up seeds at all? If they do then it might be time to try "hard love" and leave them to get on with it for a day.

I found a fully fledged pigeon last year that simply would not fed herself. She was too old the try the "syringe and balloon" method and I can't quite remember why I rejected tube feeding, I probably felt that she needed solid food at that age. I soaked pigeon mix and fed her the larger peas and beans one at a time. That was exhausting for both of us.

Hand feeding a pigeon is pure joy surpassed only by the joy of finding that at last they are self feeding.


Cynthia
 

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Terry,
5-6 weeks old heh? I have birds sent to me 2 day express. No food or water. So, he would be ok not to hand feed for a day. He needs to be prompted in this way to try new foods. I would give it your best shot and give one more good hand feeding, then nothing except seed, grit and water for 24 hours. I believe he will begin to eat. :D

Good luck,
Ralph
 

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I used Bastir

I delute/dissolved the chix pellets in water and then use the bastir to suck the pellets and squirt inside the squabs mouth and "VIOLA!" make it quick and less struggle for the both of you, every 4 hours...Just dont push the bastir too much, enough for the food to go in and less mess...
 

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Baster, for basting, not bastir

Demi,

I think Pegasus meant "baster" instead of "bastir."

To baste is to pour juices or melted fat over meat during cooking to keep it moist. The most common way to baste is to us a ladle, or else the inexpensive plastic kitchen baster which has a rubber squeeze bulb and a large plastic tube for sucking up the juices in the bottom of the pan and then squeezing the juice onto the meat.

In essence, it supposedly accomplishes much the same thing as a large hypodermic syringe.

Larry
 

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60 cc cahter syringes work great Also come in 30 cc You can get them at many drug stores. They have about a 2 to 2 1/2 inche extended end which can be placed down the throat and Feeding is extra fast. Works well for any bird 5 days old to weaning. You adjust feed amount to age Any time i ever hand fed I used chick starter made a mush out of it you can either heat water add stater or add water and stater heat in microwave And cool to a warm mix make it soupy as It digests better. They did not used to have a fomrula for any pigeons before . Then when you are feeding 1 to 5 day old birds You can boil and egg take the white of the eggs and a small amount of water smash the egg white to form a milk It will then work great. Years ago they said egg whites used like thins was the closest thing to pigeon milk So I tried it to see how well it worked And it worked great. No days you can order this and that But chick starter and eggs are found local And will do the job great. Thought I would Mention this.
 
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