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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I just happened to be walking by a gas station today when I saw a pigeon under a car. He didn't look injured but he was walking, not flying. I put some water in a bottle cap for him and he drank it greedily. Put some more out and he drank several more times. But he didn't seem interested in pigeon seed, which I carry with me at all times.

He made squeaky mewing noises occasionally that sounded just like baby pigeon sounds. He has a tiny little feather on the top of his beak, but otherwise looks like an adult pigeon.

When I held the actual water bottle out to him he made that squeaky noise and put his beak in the opening.

Anyway, I got a box and tried to take him but he did half fly, up onto the hood of a car getting gas, then onto its roof, then onto the roof of the one-story convenience store in the station. So, he can fly even if he doesn't know it!

An hour later, coming back home, he was still in the exact same spot.

I think if I go back and park my car under that spot, I can stand on the roof of my car and put some water up there for him. But I'd like to put some food too. What should I put? Bread soaked in water to be easy to eat? I could also put some canned cat or dog food up there (meat) if you think I should.

I can take a photograph but I don't think it will tell you much.
 

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He probably doesn't know HOW to eat on his own. The best thing would be to catch him and check his crop for food and to find out if he has some healthy flesh on his bones or if he is too skinny. The bird may be orphaned and may need to to intervene and bring him home.
I wouldn't put canned dog or cat food out. It's not the food of choice, for Pigeons and it would spoil very quickly.
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
Thanks Charis. In the meantime, not being the patient type, I went out and stood on the roof of my car and put out water, bread soaked in water, and some smooth turkey food. I just got home.

Earlier I had thrown a lot of pigeon seed up there.

He backed up away from me when I put the food and water up. I could barely reach up and put the food on the roof. I don't have an easy way to get onto that roof unless I borrow a 12' ladder, and if I did go up there I might scare him back down onto the ground - this is a heavily trafficked gas station bordered by two extremely busy streets (one street is technically Highway 101). I was pretty relieved when he flew up there to safety - and stayed there!

There are some other pigeons up there with him, but I'm not sure if any of them are his parents.

There's an empty house next door whose window overlooks the roof of the convenience store - I could maybe get in there somehow but I'm not at all sure how I'd catch him and I'd be really afraid he'd fly into traffic.

He really does look like he's got some meat on his bones. But I also got the impression he didn't know how to eat. But he's pretty much full-size - do their parents still feed them when they're full-grown or nearly so?

How do they learn to eat on their own, anyway?
 

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He'll probably be OK since he can fly and I doubt you'll be able to catch him.
No more MEAT products...OK?
The dad teaches them to eat and they does feed the babies even after they look full grown.
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
OK, mom, no more meat products!

Shall I continue to throw pigeon feed up there? Or if there is food he is more likely to eat, I can definitely do that. Just tell me what he would eat and I'll get it for him.
 

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Discussion Starter · #6 ·
PS, he must have come from a nest somewhere in the immediate vicinity. Being as how there are busy streets around there, he didn't cross on foot and I doubt he would have been able to fly across the street in one swoop (and if not, he surely would have been hit by a car). So I guess I'm saying, I hope that his parents will find him. Is that a possibility if he's not actually ON the nest, but nearby? That his dad will go "Hey junior, whatcha doin' over here? Have some food!" I suppose no other pigeon's daddy would just adopt him, huh?
 

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Pigeon seed would be a fabulous thing to throw up there:D as long as you don't get into trouble.:eek:
 

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Discussion Starter · #8 ·
Hi Charis (or any other expert), If I could get up there I think he might let me feed him. Yesterday he was squeaking a little and tried to put his beak in the water bottle, while I was holding it.

So, what would be the best food for him, and is there some shape of bowl or cup that would most remind him of his parent's beak, so he'd be likely to stick his own beak into it and eat?

I threw seed up last night, there's a house under construction next door and I could *almost* get in there and if I could get in, there's a window I could go through onto the roof.
 

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Discussion Starter · #9 ·
GOT HIM. I went over to the gas station today and he was sitting on the top of the fence that borders the lot. I was able to see his underside and I think he has had diarrhea. There are a couple of drops of yellow liquid and his underside looks damp.

I was able to get him into a box, he's in my car now. He squeals or chirps quietly when I move the box.

I truthfully don't know if he's a fledgling or a sick adult. Anybody in San Francisco around today who would take a look at him if I brought him over? In the meantime, my car is in the shade, in a cool, quiet carport spot, so I'm just going to leave him there until I hear back from somebody on this forum.
 

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Discussion Starter · #10 ·
Yay George, he said I could bring him over for an inspection. When George saw him he said he's a fledgling (and showed me how you can tell), who perhaps fledged 2 or 3 weeks ago. His beak is still soft and bumpy and not white, and his eyes are still very dark. He said his poop looks good and he's got some meat on his bones. George showed me how to feed him a mix of KayTee powder and water, warm, with a needle syringe. He got about 3 cc's that way, though he had to be encouraged to swallow. Then we tried some parrot pellets and got about 5 into him, he swallowed those like a champ. And some Cipro and Pedialyte. So, he got a good start at least.

After we put him back in his box he staggered a few times. George wasn't sure what that was about so he said he'd keep him for a few hours to make sure he was stable before I picked him up. Then I'll keep him in my bathroom and feed him several times a day unless I can find someone in the SF Bay Area who is a more experienced rehabber who is willing to take him.

George thought he was quite cute!
 

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I think your a great person, to get on the roof of your car for a bird. AMAZING!! My husband would of had a FIT if I got on the roof of our car and its an old truck. You definitely went out of your way. You deserve a big pat on the back and good job!!min
 

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You are a good person. That bird looked vulnerable in that gas station. It probably fledge too early or fell from the nest. I had some babies at my loft that flew to the ground before their time and they got pecked/scalped. Obviously, they can't fly back up and their parents can't do anything about it.
 

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Discussion Starter · #13 · (Edited)
George did a great job with him and I picked him up this afternoon. Tomorrow he is going to yet ANOTHER list member who will put him in with several other fledglings who are being rehabbed, and he will be released in a group to possibly stay in a flock with each other. At least, he'll be with other pigeons, rather than being all alone in my bathroom!

I think he might be squeaking a bit in there, hard to hear, but one of my cats is sitting outside the bathroom door kinda intrigued.

I am going to feed him some moistened parrot pellets tonight. He is flapping his wings and squealing when I put my hand in, he's obviously feeling better. I took him out in a towel to clean his cage, and I gave him a little dish of water and put his beak in it just a millimeter, and he drank, then he stuck his beak way in and drank some more! I'll feed him once tonight and twice tomorrow and then off he goes to his new home. I've named him Georgie by the way.

I covered his cage 3/4 with a towel, and turned the bathroom light off. We are having a bit of a heat wave in SF so the bathroom is warm. Should I cover the cage completely, and perhaps put something warm over it so he'll stay insulated tonight? Would he prefer to be completely covered, do you think?

Also, when I was cleaning his cage and he was flapping around, almost panicking, I noticed his poop was almost emerald green. Is that not good?
 

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I would only the top and sides of the cage but not the front.
The green poop you have described may likely be an indication of starvation.
Great save!
 

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Yeah, it was a good save. Don't worrk about him flapping around while you were cleaning...it's not a bad sign...he just wanted out and away ! Good that he mustered the energy to do that.

The poops don't look alarming to me, they are green but there is still white in there and they look fairly normal.

The poor lil' guy was doing OK when Serendip came to get him. In the AM we had handfed him some formula then some soaked parrot pellets popped down his throat. The latter was easier. Plus a bit of pedialyte. Then some Cipro, which she has for tom'w too.

He slept most of the morning, and I just kept him in a quiet location, looking out the window...but he really did sleep a lot.

Gave him some more soaked pellets this afternoon and he had perked up...he was vocalizing and wing whipping me. After second meal he seemed to be more like a normal pidge, more alert, stronger looking, showing a bit of attitude ;)

He isn't emaciated...I have cared for pidges thinner than he. He isn't out of it, either. I think a good amount of food and fluids will really up his strength...although he may have some underlying bug going on. Hard to say...he may just be a fledgling who fledged but just couldn't keep up to speed with all of the things a young one needs to do to survive...forage, find water, and not allow themselves to be pushed around by the adults. It's a lotta stuff these lil' fledglings have to endure and learn out there. I have taken in others his age who just seemed like they couldn't quite get the knack of it and started becoming weaker as a result. Again, am not sure of this, he may be a bit sick.
But his response overall to the first day of nourishment and treatment was very good. Excellent to hear he is drinking on his own, too !!!!

He goes across the bridge to member Feralpigeon tomorrow afternoon. Kudos to Serendipity for saving this lil' guy !!!!!
 

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Discussion Starter · #16 · (Edited)
Thanks Jaye, I forgot your forum name because I know your "real" name since we have corresponded off list. I'm so grateful to you for letting me bring him over, I would not have known what to do with him and on a Sunday it would probably have been a very expensive vet visit as I have never rehabbed a pigeon!

FeralPigeon recommended that I feed an aggressive amount of food, so I actually got about 18 parrot pellets into him tonight. I soaked them in water first. I forgot to take them out of the water so after a while the last ones were too mushy. I'll remember not to do that tomorrow.

I need to learn how to check for how full the crop is. I'll look on the forum and the 'net for photos.

His poop when I checked just now was good - white with a green center. The previous one this evening had looked all green, and a very emerald green at that.

After I put him back after his last meal, he did what I think you observed today. You know how people fall asleep and their heads gradually fall forward and then they jerk backwards? Well, his whole body slowly leans forward while his eyes are half closed, then he rights himself and starts it all over again.

There was a moment when it sounded almost like he was wheezing, but then he stopped.

It's weird to hold him and pry his beak open, no matter how gently. He's incredibly light, and his beak seems so soft, not like a hard adult bird beak.

He swallows the pellets like a champ!

I have some bird seed in the cage but he shows no interest.

I didn't give him any water except by dipping his beak in a bowl, and he drank a bit. I figure the moisture in the pellets will be enough. And I left water in his cage too.
 

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Remove the water for the night. Birds can't see in the dark and I have had a couple of tragedies happen with iffy bird and water in their cage over night.
 

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Discussion Starter · #18 ·
Phew, thanks Charis. I just removed it. Left the seed in but he's not eating that anyway.

I stayed very still and listened to him breathe just now. I can hear each breath if I'm very quiet. I wouldn't say he's wheezing exactly but there is an extremely faint wheezing/whistling sound with each breath, and he's rocking a little bit with each breath. This is VERY subtle but it is perceptible.

I looked at some photos of full crops, but he's in his "hunkered down to sleep" mode where the chest puffs out anyway, so I'm not sure how full his crop is.

More in the morning.

Thanks everybody!
 

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Discussion Starter · #20 · (Edited)
I fed him 19 parrot pellets this morning, and .03 cc of pedialyte. He had pecked around in the dish of seed overnight. I don't know if he ate any but he made a mess.

He seems a bit more lethargic. No wing flapping. When I put him down on the floor he just stood there, and let me pet him and pick him up. In fact I sat there with him perched on my hand and lifted him up and he just stood there clinging to my hand with his toes (or whatever they're called!). Either he's weaker or he's gotten used to me. I don't know. No squealing or squeaking either. His breathing is still slightly wheezy.

I still can't tell where his crop is or how much is in it but I felt along his chest and throat and it felt pretty bony, even after feeding him I couldn't find any little lump of food. Maybe I don't know how/where to look.

I'm glad he's going to feralpigeon tonight, who will be able to assess him properly. I'll give him one more meal at 2 pm.
 
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