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 Do I have to separate them?

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demimassie



Posts : 2
Join date : 2012-11-29

PostSubject: Do I have to separate them?   Thu Nov 29, 2012 7:02 pm

I have two pigeons, male and female. One day after I found an injured one in my yard and took him to the vet, another one was brought there. Their right wings were amputated due to their injuries. The male has no right wing, but the femal has it down to the elbow. Neither can fly though their flutter their wings. I took them in about 1 1/2 years ago. They are in the dog kennel, 7.5 feet by 13 feet covered by the wire at the top. I have built them shelves and stepping boxes to go up and down. They have become adept at hopping around in their pen. They have a nesting box and a loft to go up inside the bottomless dogloo above.
About 3 weeks ago, I noticed that the female lost feathers all around her neck. Then the day after, I saw the male plucking her feather which looked like he was just grooming her, but went too far. I couldn't observe him doing it but just that once, though, because it is too close to her thoat I don't think she could have done it on her own.
They have been getting along well, doing everything together. They have produced eggs 2 or 3 times, but it seems that they stopped doing that a few months ago. They seem to eat well, move around and keep themselves busy grooming, too, evern though they can't fly. They take baths often, too.
I don't know if he keeps doing it to her now, but do you suggest that I separate them?
Is this kind of behavior seen often? If I were to separate them, it would take some time for me to built a low fence in the middle, stepping things, etc., for both of them. Is there anything wrong for them to stop producing eggs?
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Teresa
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Posts : 5381
Join date : 2009-07-23
Location : Portugal

PostSubject: Re: Do I have to separate them?   Tue Dec 04, 2012 5:37 am

Hi Demimassie,

Welcome to Pigeon Angels! Hi there/Bye I'm glad you were able to log in at last!

It sounds like your male pigeon is feeling frustrated! Hard pecking on the female's neck is related to mating behaviour gone wrong. Unfortunately, domestic violence can happen sometimes, and may lead to the couple having to be separated.

Occasionally pigeon couples break up. It's unusual, but it can happen. Either because one of the pigeons no longer fancies the other, or because the male is aggressive and the female becomes scared of him. In the wild, the discontented partner would just take off and leave the other, but in captivity it's a different matter, they have nowhere else to go!
You can take the male out of the communal cage and isolate him for a couple of hours to see if that stops the bad boy behaviour. Sometimes this works -- many prefer to behave rather than face solitary confinement. But sometimes it doesn't, and when that happens it's best to build a partition and divide the cage.

I have one pair living in adjoining cages for the same reason. The male is extremely aggressive, and he used to attack everybody and everything except his mate. Then one day he became aggressive with her too. Successive episodes of 'time out' seemed to work at first, but not for long. And the day he took a really hard peck at her leg that left her limping for 3 days, I decided that enough was enough. Now they only spend time together under strict supervision. The rest of the time they can see each other and 'talk' to each other, but no touching.
She dotes on him, and frets when she can't see him, but his attitude is different: he also tries to court other females he sees, so that shows his heart is not in the relationship.
I had posted about him here before, asking for advice from more experienced members, and you may find their advice useful. This is the link:
http://pij-n-angels.forumotion.net/t1830-hercules-on-the-rampage

As for causes, it's mostly guess work. But it seems to happen most with males that still suffer pain from old injuries (the Dr. Houses of pigeon world) or had a very traumatic upbringing, or else males that feel frustrated at having no offspring.

Could it be that your male is annoyed that the female is no longer laying? It's a good possibility. Perhaps she doesn't love him any more (check how she behaves in relation to him), or perhaps she needs a calcium supplement in order to lay. Calcivet and similar products contain calcium gluconate with added vitamin D3 and are perfect for pigeons.
Calcium gluconate is much more easily absorbed than calcium carbonate, the most common form of a calcium supplement. And vitamin D3 is what allows the absorption of calcium by the body. It has to be D3, as birds cannot absorb vitamin D, which is usually prescribed for people. This vitamin is especially important for birds who don't have enough exposure to direct sunlight.

I would also check the male's amputation stump, and look for any sign of swelling on the joints that could be causing him pain. If you find anything amiss, it would be best to take him to the vet and ask for his advice.

Please let me know your findings, and good luck! Smile
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demimassie



Posts : 2
Join date : 2012-11-29

PostSubject: Re: Do I have to separate them?   Thu Dec 20, 2012 10:43 pm

My two pigeons are doing great now, I think.

They are acting very normal, eating well, grooming themselves and each other, mating.
The female's neck looks normal. I was wondering if she was molting when I thought that
the male was plucking her feathers.....I don't know.
It's just that they are still so afraid of me that I don't want to cause any more trauma
than they have already experienced, being rescued and operated on. I don't want to
man handle them if I don't have to. When I brought them home from the animal hospital,
my intention was just to let them live out their lives as peaceful as possible. They get a
lot of direct sun light during the day, get to see their wild counterpart a lot though not
able to have any contact, and have enough food, and clean water everyday.
Besides my not wanting to sacre them any more than I have to, my financial situation has changed so that I can no longer afford to freely take them in to the vet. just because I am
a little worried.
I am right now very happy to report that they seem to be doing fine. I will, though, keep
close eye on them and try to keep their cage clean.
I am very thankful to be able to access your forum and get helpful information. Thank you.
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Teresa
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Posts : 5381
Join date : 2009-07-23
Location : Portugal

PostSubject: Re: Do I have to separate them?   Tue Jan 29, 2013 5:52 pm

Thank you so much for the update and your message, it's great to know your two pigeons are getting on really well! Smile

You asked about cold weather, and whether you should worry about it, but that depends mostly on the humidity. Pigeons don't tolerate high humidity and strong drafts well, but if it's a dry cold they can usually handle it, especially if they were born in the area and are used to those conditions. Having said that, I'm sure that if they felt uncomfortable you would know, as you have such a good relationship with them and are very observant. It's a bit like having kids, lol, a mother's heart can feel when something is not right!

I totally agree with your decision to swap their eggs. It can be difficult, and babies are so very cute, but making a decision on the basis of what is right for THEM is definitely the way to go! Great job
Best wishes for you and your pigeons, and a very happy New Year! Star quality
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