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Discussion Starter · #1 · (Edited)
Hey there, back again with a new (LONG) post!

I was looking on craigslist when a young pigeon popped up about an hour from me, listed as female. I have been told it's best to keep pigeons in pairs so they have a buddy, so I went to go check her out as a companion for my current girl. The house she was living in didn't seem very nice--lots of small loud dogs, wild kids, smoking indoors, and she was in a wire bottom cage with a cockatiel. She was listed as hand trained, but when I picked her up the person wouldn't let me indoors to see her being removed from her cage--I think that's because she is completely and utterly terrified.

The pigeon I got recently, and posted on here about, is doing much better! Your advice helped immensely, as of this morning she hopped willingly into my hand and scooted up my arm to look me very closely in the face for a few minutes before hopping back to my hand, eating, and then hopping back to her cage. I'm seeing so much improvement, and it's great!

Meanwhile, this new bird will sit and shake when you are nearby, eats like she has been starved and is very small. When I reached in to clean the cage last night she got out after wing slapping a bunch and flew around until we could scoop her up and place her back in her cage, where she sat and stared, puffed up for a while. This is way worse than my other pigeon, she seems traumatized.

I'm not sure of her age, the previous owner estimated less than a year...the cere on her nose is still mostly pink and small, and she overall is TINY (body slightly larger than palm sized) Here's a picture of her seated: http://puu.sh/ueQpv/3990cb9ebf.jpg

I guess I'm hoping for some idea of if anyone can help me determine age, I still don't know if she actually is female yet...and how long I should keep them separated before introducing them to each other, and how that introduction process should go. Currently I'm keeping her in a separate cage AND room to watch her for any signs of disease/lice/etc. I'm hoping as far as gaining trust with her, that I can progress in a similar way as my other pigeon in that I will leave her mostly be for several days to a week, only sitting nearby and talking, especially when she is eating, and then move onto hand feeding only, then hand feeding outside of the cage to where she has to sit on me/my arm.

I also am curious to know if she is still fearful and I put her with my other pigeon, would that set my other pigeon back as far as her trust and comfort with me? I don't want to lose any progress I have made with her.

Thanks to those who made it through this! I'm just glad I went and checked her out, that did not seem like a healthy environment for her at all!
 

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Hey there, back again with a new (LONG) post!

I was looking on craigslist when a young pigeon popped up about an hour from me, listed as female. I have been told it's best to keep pigeons in pairs so they have a buddy, so I went to go check her out as a companion for my current girl. The house she was living in didn't seem very nice--lots of small loud dogs, wild kids, smoking indoors, and she was in a wire bottom cage with a cockatiel. She was listed as hand trained, but when I picked her up the person wouldn't let me indoors to see her being removed from her cage--I think that's because she is completely and utterly terrified.

She should never have been in a a cockatiel as it could have injured her. She would have no defense against a tiel's beak.

The pigeon I got recently, and posted on here about, is doing much better! Your advice helped immensely, as of this morning she hopped willingly into my hand and scooted up my arm to look me very closely in the face for a few minutes before hopping back to my hand, eating, and then hopping back to her cage. I'm seeing so much improvement, and it's great!

Meanwhile, this new bird will sit and shake when you are nearby, eats like she has been starved and is very small. When I reached in to clean the cage last night she got out after wing slapping a bunch and flew around until we could scoop her up and place her back in her cage, where she sat and stared, puffed up for a while. This is way worse than my other pigeon, she seems traumatized.

Instead of chasing her to put her in her cage, a better idea is letting her out when it is getting dark out, then you can just turn the lights out and pick her up. They don't see well in the dark, and usually won't fly off. You can therefore just pick her up. Chasing her will just scare her and that won't help with getting her comfortable with you.

I'm not sure of her age, the previous owner estimated less than a year...the cere on her nose is still mostly pink and small, and she overall is TINY (body slightly larger than palm sized) Here's a picture of her seated: http://puu.sh/ueQpv/3990cb9ebf.jpg

She is young as her cere is still pink.

I guess I'm hoping for some idea of if anyone can help me determine age, I still don't know if she actually is female yet...and how long I should keep them separated before introducing them to each other, and how that introduction process should go. Currently I'm keeping her in a separate cage AND room to watch her for any signs of disease/lice/etc. I'm hoping as far as gaining trust with her, that I can progress in a similar way as my other pigeon in that I will leave her mostly be for several days to a week, only sitting nearby and talking, especially when she is eating, and then move onto hand feeding only, then hand feeding outside of the cage to where she has to sit on me/my arm.


Keeping a new bird separate from any other birds you have is necessary for about a month. This gives you time to determine that the new bird is healthy, and if it does need worming or anything, gives you time to do that. Also gives you time to get her used to you.
To introduce, the best way is to put their 2 cages beside each other where they can see each other and get used to each other. When they seem comfortable or like they want to be together, letting them out together in a room is a good way of doing it. Let them both eventually go into the same cage together on their own if you can. Pigeons will view their cage as their territory, and putting another bird into a birds territory isn't often a good idea, as it can cause fights, with the bird whose cage it is, defending their territory. Let them choose when they are ready for that.

I also am curious to know if she is still fearful and I put her with my other pigeon, would that set my other pigeon back as far as her trust and comfort with me? I don't want to lose any progress I have made with her.


Hard to say about will the wilder bird affecting the calmer one or not. Sometimes that does happen, and sometimes it works the other way around. The scared bird will see that the first bird is okay with you and that you mean them no harm. I have seen it go both ways. I have also had the friendly one remain friendly, and the other remain wild for some time. They usually do come around in time though. Just go slowly as you are doing and use patience. Use treats too. This often helps a lot, Try to gain the trust of the new one while you have her in quarantine.


Thanks to those who made it through this! I'm just glad I went and checked her out, that did not seem like a healthy environment for her at all!
I too am glad you got her out of there. You did a good thing. She will be happier and safer with you.
Let us know how it goes as you go along.
 

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She's a very lucky girl that you found her. After the life she had it will take her a while to settle but she will trust you once she knows you're not out to scare or hurt her, it will probably takes a few months but your patience will eventually be rewarded.
Thank you for taking her away from such a bad existence.
 

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Hope your birds will get to be good friends. We have apair of females who are best friends, Lucy and Tracy, who sit on eggs together...of course they are infertile...and groom each other and seem to really like each other. We call them The Omelet Sisters.
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
Thank you! I've definitely been only catching him with the lights down, he's still so flighty when he feels touch though, but he's doing better. Thank you for all the advice. Oh--and I'm saying he, because he puffed up and did a mating dance at me this morning, so I think I'm guessing male for the time being!
 

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Discussion Starter · #6 ·
Hope your birds will get to be good friends. We have apair of females who are best friends, Lucy and Tracy, who sit on eggs together...of course they are infertile...and groom each other and seem to really like each other. We call them The Omelet Sisters.

That's so precious! I'm starting to think this little girl may be a boy, this morning he puffed up his crop and did a cooing figure 8 mating dance at me, so that's my best guess for the time being!
 

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Discussion Starter · #7 ·
She's a very lucky girl that you found her. After the life she had it will take her a while to settle but she will trust you once she knows you're not out to scare or hurt her, it will probably takes a few months but your patience will eventually be rewarded.
Thank you for taking her away from such a bad existence.

I'm very lucky to have her/him. This morning the little thing puffed up and did a mating dance at me, so I'm wondering if he's a little boy! I'm going to keep talking to him and see if he will fly to me on his own after a bit. He's probably starved for attention, poor thing.
 

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That's so precious! I'm starting to think this little girl may be a boy, this morning he puffed up his crop and did a cooing figure 8 mating dance at me, so that's my best guess for the time being!
Not always a mating dance. They do that at other males as a warning.
 

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Discussion Starter · #9 ·
That's so precious! I'm starting to think this little girl may be a boy, this morning he puffed up his crop and did a cooing figure 8 mating dance at me, so that's my best guess for the time being!
Not always a mating dance. They do that at other males as a warning.
Interesting...I took a video of what he's been doing to get an opinion, just have to figure out how to upload it and I can share!
 
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