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 Hercules on the rampage

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Teresa
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PostSubject: Hercules on the rampage   Thu Jun 03, 2010 6:37 am

I need some advice from those of you who've had to deal with 'bad boy' pigeons.

I don't know what to do about Hercules, he's in such a FOUL MOOD! Maybe I tempted luck with those jokes about him being dangerous...
Yesterday was egg-rejection day. That's probably how it started, because he's such a male chauvinist pig he never takes up his shifts on the eggs, just lets Piper do all the work, and, at 305 g, she badly needs a rest.
When she came out of the nest to stretch her legs, he attacked her -- and he wasn't kidding, either -- so I gave him time out for aggressive behaviour. Half an hour later I brought him back, same thing again! Piper looked frightened, and she ran everywhere to find places to hide from him. So... time out again.
After two hours, I hoped he had calmed down a bit, and gave them some pine needles to keep them busy 'decorating'. As you've perhaps guessed, domestic bliss didn't last.
So he spent the night in a different room, as I couldn't risk leaving him with Piper. He spent the night pacing furiously, and this morning he's no sweeter, so he's still there.

I reckon that's his idea of courtship, to raise another brood. But he's never been this violent before. Any thoughts?
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EgypSwiftLady
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PostSubject: Re: Hercules on the rampage   Thu Jun 03, 2010 8:09 am

Sounds like you have your hands full Teresa.

I have had this problem before BUT in the loft, These two aren't in a loft setting with other birds are they? Sorry Embarassed I have a terrible memory.

Anyway I would seperate the two until you can get weight back on Piper, give her a rest for a couple of weeks or so. It worries me that he is getting to the point of scaring her, males can get very mean when the hen won't do what they say! Serious EEK!!
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Jackie\'s Mom
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PostSubject: Re: Hercules on the rampage   Thu Jun 03, 2010 8:10 am

I have a similar problem with Snowflake. Heaven help me He does share nest duties with Jackie, but when he sits on the eggs I let Jackie out to spend time with me, fly around a bit, take her bath in the kitchen sink, ect. When she goes back to the nest it's like he wants to punish her for being out. He attacks her with a vengence. If I seperate him from her, he does the same thing that Hercules is doing.........he paces frantically, or if I let him out to fly free, he will not leave her sight. He flys into the cage door desperately trying to get back in. I have found that seperating them only seems to make matters worse.

Although Snowflake can be very gentle and loving with Jackie he has this bad side about him as well. I have found that Jackie will just take and put up with just so much.......then she gets mad and fights back. Once Jackie goes on the offensive Snowflake tends to back off and clam down.

I don't know of any solution for you Teresa. I would put them back together and try and let them work it out. I would supervise them, but if he will not settle down, you might have to permanently seperate them.

I hope they can work it out.

Louise
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PostSubject: Re: Hercules on the rampage   Thu Jun 03, 2010 8:12 am

I'm sorry to hear about Hercules' behavior, Teresa. Disappointed

I've got an ongoing bullying situation in the aviary, and I'm at my wits end. nutter
Right now I have everyone isolated except Mikko, Pij'ette and Samantha.
They are the only ones who have never given a moments problem, but have constantly been harassed by the other four. Oh brother

The only suggestion I can give is isolation for the one who is causing the problem. I have NO idea

I will think positive thoughts that Hercules turns his behavior around soon.
Please keep us posted.

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Teresa
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PostSubject: Re: Hercules on the rampage   Thu Jun 03, 2010 9:48 pm

Thank you so much for your advice!

First of all, to answer Robin's question, they have been in a large cage by themselves. Occasionally they exercise with other pigeons, but I monitor them closely because Hercules bullies the others if he can.

It seems like Hercules is behaving like Snowflake, punishing Piper for any time off she has off the nest. But he never shares nest duties, he's always free to come and go, and even courts other hens the other side of the window. :For Shame:

After lunch, when I was with them all the time, I brought him back in, but kept the cage door open. The moment he went towards the cage, Piper came out and went to perch high up above the window, where he can't follow with his bad leg. I remember thinking, 'that looks like a divorce petition to me!'
He tried to get to where she was, and when he failed he got into the cage and kept calling her, looking up at her. At first she had her back turned, but eventually she turned round and then went in the cage. They ate together, then she sat on the empty nest, and he lay down on the front platform and dozed off. But a little later Piper rebelled: she rushed past him and came back out.
About 8 pm she went in, and he just attacked her! But I was only 2 metres away, and in one leap I'd grabbed him in mid-peck. So it was back to solitary for him...

Poor Piper, she courted him for so long, until he eventually paid her attention, almost as if to do her a favour. It pains me to think she's gonna get her heart broken, for the third time!
And I feel sorry for him too, because he's been through so much with the four operations and he's going to end up alone.

Idea/thought I just thought of something -- maybe he's in pain... Is that likely? I think he should have another X-ray to see if the metal pin in his leg has moved.
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PostSubject: Re: Hercules on the rampage   Thu Jun 03, 2010 11:05 pm

Teresa wrote:


Idea/thought I just thought of something -- maybe he's in pain... Is that likely? I think he should have another X-ray to see if the metal pin in his leg has moved.

It sounds more like he's just being aggressive, but it's certainly worth the thought that he may be in pain.

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Teresa
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PostSubject: Re: Hercules on the rampage   Fri Jun 04, 2010 8:14 pm

Hercules has an appointment for 12 pm tomorrow, and will be having another X-ray.
He's been apart from Piper all day, but as he had a whole room to himself most of the day, he was in a good mood, exploring.
Then, all of a sudden, he landed on my arm and stayed there, looking me straight in the eye, looking curious but not one bit aggressive! Just when I think I've got him figured out, he surprises me again!
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PostSubject: Re: Hercules on the rampage   Fri Jun 04, 2010 8:42 pm

Will be waiting anxiously to hear what the vet has to say.

Mr. Hercules, you may be having a bit of an issue right at the moment, but . . .
for me YOU rock LOTS, big guy.

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Cindy

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Jackie\'s Mom
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PostSubject: Re: Hercules on the rampage   Fri Jun 04, 2010 9:07 pm

Teresa,

You gotta just love this Hercules. I love it/them :Yes: I love it/them After all he has been through, I think he thinks he is entitled to act like a brat.

Loved that after being alone all day, he landed on your arm, like a little child would do after misbehaving. It was his way of saying......"Sorry Mommy, I promise to be a good boy"

Hope all is well with his new xray.

I think he deserves another chance. Laughing I'm sure Piper is missing him as well.

Louise
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PostSubject: Re: Hercules on the rampage   Fri Jun 04, 2010 9:38 pm

I'll be thinking postive thoughts. I'll throw in a couple of prayers for our sweet Hercules too.
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PostSubject: Re: Hercules on the rampage   Sat Jun 05, 2010 8:36 pm

The X-ray was great! Thrilled
The vet said that the bone growth is excellent, so he could do without the metal pin now, but he advised against taking it out unless it's necessary, because it would cause him more pain and likely lead to some neurological damage. The pin hasn't moved at all, and it's not in a position which would cause him any discomfort or pain.
On the other hand, the vet tested his foot and toes for sensitivity and said that he has some sensitivity back in his foot now. He wasn't surprised that I told him he's started using that leg. Now THAT might be uncomfortable, I think, at least to begin with. I can't imagine what it feels like, I mean, do pigeons get pins and needles or anything like that? confused The vet thinks he's just being aggressive, and suggested an appointment with the resident animal behaviourist. That sounds rather more expensive than what I can afford, but we'll see.
What surprised the vet was that this time Hercules didn't try to kill him or the nurses! Tickled Pink But he got back to pecking and wingslapping since then! Laughing


He totally outwitted me this evening and gave me an awful fright at the same time!
I'd left him free to roam around in the guest bedroom, and when I went in there to change his food and water, he was waiting, on top of the wardrobe, and with one powerful beat of wings he was out, way above my head, speeding down the hallway. Finding the door to the study (where Piper is) closed, he flew into the kitchen, beyond which is the veranda -- with the huge windows open!!! :eek: He COULD have got to them before I did, but he didn't. He went to check the study door again.
If he prises Piper and 'home' above freedom then I definitely have to continue doing everything to let him resume his normal life. He's a holy terror but... what a clever boy! Happy
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PostSubject: Re: Hercules on the rampage   Sat Jun 05, 2010 8:59 pm

Teresa wrote:
The X-ray was great! Thrilled
The vet said that the bone growth is excellent, so he could do without the metal pin now, but he advised against taking it out unless it's necessary, because it would cause him more pain and likely lead to some neurological damage. The pin hasn't moved at all, and it's not in a position which would cause him any discomfort or pain.
On the other hand, the vet tested his foot and toes for sensitivity and said that he has some sensitivity back in his foot now. He wasn't surprised that I told him he's started using that leg. Now THAT might be uncomfortable, I think, at least to begin with. I can't imagine what it feels like, I mean, do pigeons get pins and needles or anything like that? confused The vet thinks he's just being aggressive, and suggested an appointment with the resident animal behaviourist. That sounds rather more expensive than what I can afford, but we'll see.


I think he'll calm down...in a year or two. Laughing What surprised the vet was that this time Hercules didn't try to kill him or the nurses! Tickled Pink But he got back to pecking and wingslapping since then! Laughing

See...he's calming down already although he was probably plotting his escape at the time.

He totally outwitted me this evening and gave me an awful fright at the same time!
I'd left him free to roam around in the guest bedroom, and when I went in there to change his food and water, he was waiting, on top of the wardrobe, and with one powerful beat of wings he was out, way above my head, speeding down the hallway. Finding the door to the study (where Piper is) closed, he flew into the kitchen, beyond which is the veranda -- with the huge windows open!!! :eek: He COULD have got to them before I did, but he didn't. He went to check the study door again.

That is just terrifying! Heaven help me

If he prises Piper and 'home' above freedom then I definitely have to continue doing everything to let him resume his normal life. He's a holy terror but... what a clever boy! Happy
:That\\\'s so f
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PostSubject: Re: Hercules on the rampage   Sat Jun 05, 2010 9:22 pm

Matilda wrote:

I think he'll calm down...in a year or two. Laughing
What surprised the vet was that this time Hercules didn't try to kill him or the nurses! Tickled Pink But he got back to pecking and wingslapping since then! Laughing

See...he's calming down already although he was probably plotting his escape at the time.
:That\\\'s so f

ROTFL ROTFL ROTFL ROTFL ROTFL

Very likely! That's too funny
It's just such a relief that he didn't fly out the window! I never imagined in a million years that he'd lie in ambush, fly over my head like a rocket, and negotiate the maze of the flat layout without hesitation! Now that's a homer, if I've ever seen one!
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PostSubject: Re: Hercules on the rampage   Sat Jun 05, 2010 10:09 pm

Teresa...I really can imagine how horrified you were to see him flying dwon the hall.

I remember clearly the day Sam, the myna bird, got out the back door, flew into the pear tree and called...here, kitty, kitty. Lucky we got him back but I was beside myself with fear.
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PostSubject: Re: Hercules on the rampage   Sat Jun 05, 2010 11:03 pm

Just read this thread, and boy can I relate. I think everyone who has pigeons, has had one like that at one time or another. I have a male who wouldn't even sit the eggs for the longest time. I would lock him in the nest box, and take her out, just to give her some out time each day when I got home from work. He isn't perfect, but he does sit the eggs now, not always, but usually. It made him mad, and like yours, he would go after her when he was let out. He has calmed down a lot, which is a good thing, or I would have eventually separated them for good. Hopefully, Hercules will improve with time. Please let us know how it goes with them.
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PostSubject: Re: Hercules on the rampage   Sat Jun 05, 2010 11:09 pm

Teresa wrote:
The X-ray was great! Thrilled


I'm thrilled that the vet appointment went so well, Teresa. Celebrate
Three cheers for Hercules!! Hip Hip Hooray Hip Hip Hooray Hip Hip Hooray

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Cindy

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If we become ill or injured in any way,
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PostSubject: Re: Hercules on the rampage   Sat Jun 05, 2010 11:16 pm

Teresa wrote:

He totally outwitted me this evening and gave me an awful fright at the same time!
I'd left him free to roam around in the guest bedroom, and when I went in there to change his food and water, he was waiting, on top of the wardrobe, and with one powerful beat of wings he was out, way above my head, speeding down the hallway. Finding the door to the study (where Piper is) closed, he flew into the kitchen, beyond which is the veranda -- with the huge windows open!!! :eek: He COULD have got to them before I did, but he didn't.

I can only imagine how frightening that must have been.
I'm sure your heart sank to the floor for a moment.

I'm so glad he didn't make it to the window.

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Cindy

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PostSubject: Re: Hercules on the rampage   Sat Jun 05, 2010 11:19 pm

Teresa wrote:

It's just such a relief that he didn't fly out the window!

* I never imagined in a million years that he'd lie in ambush, fly over my head like a rocket, and negotiate the maze of the flat layout without hesitation!

** Now that's a homer, if I've ever seen one!

* Not only are they very intelligent, they are unpredictable as well. Serious EEK!!

** :Yes:

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PostSubject: Re: Hercules on the rampage   Tue Jun 08, 2010 3:10 pm

Hercules is behaving... Happy

Hercules and Piper are back together, and have been for over 24 hours! YESS!!
I think he so hated being on his own that he decided to compromise. I brought them back together on neutral grounds, and Piper played really hard to get at first.



He courted and courted her, and eventually she went over to him and started preening him. See how happy he looked!



Then he started preening her! Happy



They've been rearranging pine needles (my daughter reckons pine trees are like IKEA for pigeons!) and sitting together on the nest -- that's a first! -- and the rest of the time they're taking turns.
I can't tell you how happy I am with these developments! Happy Dance

... but Pippin is not!
'Sweetness and Light' Pippin has been a bad girl, pecking Sammy! Holy Cow (Is there something in the air, I wonder!) And Sammy was doing nothing but move away, which is extraordinary because Sammy is the biggest of my females, and packs a good peck or wingslap when she wants to. (She even threatened Hercules once... until she started stargazing, then I had to stand between them!)
So up went the partition between their two cages... But at least they can see each other, so we'll see what happens.
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PostSubject: Re: Hercules on the rampage   Tue Jun 08, 2010 3:29 pm

Holy Sheep!! ...I think it just amy be one of those love/hate relationships.
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PostSubject: Re: Hercules on the rampage   Tue Jun 08, 2010 3:42 pm

I'm glad that Hercules is behaving himself. Let us know how it goes. Maybe he just needs a little time out now and then.
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PostSubject: Re: Hercules on the rampage   Tue Jun 08, 2010 4:07 pm

They're adorable
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Teresa
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PostSubject: Re: Hercules on the rampage   Tue Jun 08, 2010 4:24 pm

NiteOwl wrote:
I'm glad that Hercules is behaving himself. Let us know how it goes. Maybe he just needs a little time out now and then.

I hope it works. It's hard being a solitary pigeon in a human environment, and they both deserve to be happy.
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PostSubject: Re: Hercules on the rampage   Tue Jun 08, 2010 5:25 pm

Teresa wrote:
NiteOwl wrote:
I'm glad that Hercules is behaving himself. Let us know how it goes. Maybe he just needs a little time out now and then.

I hope it works. It's hard being a solitary pigeon in a human environment, and they both deserve to be happy.

I agree. I think he'll settle down after a while. We have the same problems in the loft, only with more birds. I never know who will do what next. LOL.
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PostSubject: Re: Hercules on the rampage   Tue Jun 08, 2010 7:57 pm

I am so happy that Hercules is behaving.

He looks so happy to be back with Piper. They are just adorable together. I love it/them I love it/them I love it/them

Louise
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