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 Babies not getting enough seed

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sqeakersmom



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Join date : 2011-05-08
Age : 63
Location : Arizona

PostSubject: Babies not getting enough seed   Sun May 08, 2011 6:36 pm

I volunteer at a wildlife rehab center and tube feed doves and make the formula so I have some background wiith feeding. About a month ago I found two baby pigeons on the ground in my back yard, the nest was not more than two feet away from a rock squirrel's tunnel. The babies had only begun to squeak. Looking online at pictures I estimated them at 11-13 days old. Their crops were full of seed. I started them on dove formula, moving them inside on to a heating pad. They grew beautifully and a couple of weeks ago I added seed provided through a jar with a fabric cover held on by a rubber band that I saw demonstrated on a youtube video. They initially took to this feeding method but they were such maniacs that I worried about aspiration so I quit and continued tubing and providing seed. The youngest bird has started consistently feeding himself but the older of the two seems to make far more pecks than successful swallows.
So many questions - I'll start with two:
Could their beaks be delayed in development due to handfeeding?
Should I continue to tube or cut back on food to induce hunger?
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Teresa
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PostSubject: Re: Babies not getting enough seed   Sun May 08, 2011 7:18 pm

Hi, Sqeakersmom, and welcome! Welcome

At over a month old, the two youngsters should be able to feed themselves by now. The fact that the younger of the two does it is encouraging. Doesn't the older one try harder when he sees the other pecking? Providing he is healthy, and his beak isn't overgrown or malformed in any way, it should be safe to cut back on tubing to induce him to eat on his own. I would suggest using a reasonably deep feeding bowl, so he can get some seeds even if he is a little clumsy at first. Wink

Tube feeding doesn't slow down the development of the beak.

Thank you so much for helping the little ones. Without your help, they wouldn't have stood a chance! Thank You

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sqeakersmom



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Join date : 2011-05-08
Age : 63
Location : Arizona

PostSubject: Re: Babies not getting enough seed   Sun May 08, 2011 8:39 pm

Good to know that I haven't retarded their growth. I started defrosted peas today before I posted. The older bird seems to have been more successful - a little seed in his crop. I also tried the deeper bowl and besides the fact that he thinks it is a nesting bowl he also is getting his beak in deeper. Thanks so much.
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AZWhitefeather
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Join date : 2009-01-11
Location : Arizona Southwestern United States

PostSubject: Re: Babies not getting enough seed   Sun May 08, 2011 9:36 pm

Hi Squeakersmom, Hi there/Bye
Welcome to Pigeon Angels. Thrilled
It's wonderful to have another AZ resident join the group.

Thank you for taking these little ones under your wing. Pigeon angel
As Teresa has said, they probably wouldn't have had a chance otherwise.

Is there any chance of posting a picture of them? We love pictures.

I agree with Teresa, unless there is a problem I would cut back the tube feeding as well. Sometimes these little ones get dependant on being hand fed and get lazy and won't eat on their own.

Please keep us posted on how things are coming along. Smile

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Cindy

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Keeping us safe from the predators that share the sky.

If we become ill or injured in any way,
Please lead us to safety where we are welcome to stay.
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AZWhitefeather
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PostSubject: Re: Babies not getting enough seed   Sun May 08, 2011 9:38 pm

sqeakersmom wrote:
Good to know that I haven't retarded their growth. I started defrosted peas today before I posted. The older bird seems to have been more successful - a little seed in his crop.

I also tried the deeper bowl and besides the fact that he thinks it is a nesting bowl he also is getting his beak in deeper.

Thanks so much.

Gotta love 'em.

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Cindy

A Pigeon's Prayer
Please watch over us while we fly,
Keeping us safe from the predators that share the sky.

If we become ill or injured in any way,
Please lead us to safety where we are welcome to stay.
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NiteOwl
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Location : Southern New England

PostSubject: Re: Babies not getting enough seed   Mon May 09, 2011 3:11 pm

They should be eating on their own by now. I wouldn't tube feed them at all. Instead, supplementing them with the defrosted peas is a good idea, but if you do that at the end of the day, then it encourages them to try to eat on their own during the day, as they are hungry. Sometimes they seem to find it easier to pick up the defrosted peas and corn then they do to pick up seed. Probably because it is soft. After feeding them peas and corn at the end of the day a few times, start leaving them some in the morning, along with the seed and see if they will learn to pick them up on their own. Once they do that, they will learn to pick up the seed. Are they drinking on their own? If not, dunk their beaks gently into the water, but not over their nose. They will pick it up soon.
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sqeakersmom



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Join date : 2011-05-08
Age : 63
Location : Arizona

PostSubject: squeakers release   Sat May 14, 2011 9:15 pm

After all the suggestions for getting my two babies to eat seed they became little pigs (deep bowl and some soaked frozen peas did the trick). Today they joined the flock that I feed (most of the birds in the flock were released from time spent at the rehab place where I volunteer - though of course they all made friends and brought them home...). Both fed on the ground with their peers. The younger bird came home at the end of the day and jumped on my shoulder so I kept him in his outdoor cage tonight. The older one went to roost with the flock on the roof of the doctor's office where the rest have taken up residence. I watched with binoculars. At first he was rejected but as it grew darker they put up less resistence and he is in. Tomorrow I am hoping the younger bird will choose freedom. Leavin the light on. Thanks everyone for the suggestions! Cute Dove Dove right
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Teresa
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PostSubject: Re: Babies not getting enough seed   Sat May 14, 2011 10:00 pm

Thank you for the update, Sqeakersmom! I love it/them Thank You
That's really wonderful news, and I hope both of them will settle in with the flock you feed -- it sounds like
they have a really good life!

Best wishes for you and for them!
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AZWhitefeather
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PostSubject: Re: Babies not getting enough seed   Sat May 14, 2011 10:32 pm

Your update is greatly appreciated, squeakersmom. Thank You

I'm so glad everything is going well.
I'm sure at some point the younger one will leave Mom's shoulder ( ) and join the flock.
It may take a few days though.

I had one like that. Just wasn't sure he really wanted to join life on the wild side. But eventually decided to take flight. pigeon 1

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Cindy

A Pigeon's Prayer
Please watch over us while we fly,
Keeping us safe from the predators that share the sky.

If we become ill or injured in any way,
Please lead us to safety where we are welcome to stay.
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