Bottle Feeding A Baby Pigeon
Courtesy of Marian Isaac
|Finally got around to taking pics of a different method of feeding.
This is one used by rehabbers alot. I'm not sure who developed this
method. I use a glass jar so that I can see the baby is actually eating
rather than gulping air. The bottle is deep enough and full enough so
that the beak is not poking up through the food and into the air.
The cover of the bottle is vetwrap with a slit cut in the middle, about 3/4 inch. It's held on by a rubber band. Hold the bottle so the cut is vertical to the bird's beak. Guide the beak into the slit and he will quickly pick up gobbling food.
Most babies are too excited to target the hole. They frantically search to one side of the bottle and so need help zeroing in.
He'll keep gobbling so you have to see when his mouth has enough food, and gently pull him back or pull the bottle away from him so he can swallow.
The bottle can be mounted on a block of wood with a slanted angle (taped on) so you don't have to hold it. I haven't done this as they progress so quickly from this type of feeding to self feeding.
After they get their mouthfuls of food this way, they're thirsty and learn to drink right away.
While I'm bottle feeding, I leave the same type of food in a dish for them.
I don't use seed as I worry that they might inhale one. The food in the pic is Harrison's fine adult pellets. Pigeons do well on it. The pigeon in this pic was eating from the bottle a week ago. He is self feeding now but still eager to bottle feed as he's still a hysterical baby.