Pigeon Tales

May 31, 2014

New PMV Cases, Betty left her Plaster Eggs after 114 Days and Chica has disappeared!

From the

Diary as of 2/8 – 2/13/2014

2/8   Today Roberta came in with severe PMV symptoms. She was totally unoriented and groggy. Before I could actually react she was gone again.

2/9   You would not believe it: Betty has left the plaster eggs and this was my opportunity to finally clean out the nest and make everything new! Betty sat on the same eggs for 114 days!!!

Roberta came again and tried to get inside. But she disappeared again when I tried to lead her inside. Oh my what can I do? I have no place for quarantaining a bird. I am so sad. What’s going on here? Do we have to face another PMV epidemic here?

2/10   Lucky and Betty are cuddling publicly!!! This is really a change. Betty was always so very shy and hardly ever cuddled with Lucky outside their house or somewhere else. She must have had a very prudish family.

2/12   Betty already laid her first egg – it is #9.

2/13   Johnny, the mate of Chica, has also PMV. He was showing heavy symptoms when he came in for feeding. The usual – unfocussed pecking of the seeds. I am totally sad. But I realized that he managed to actually eat some of the seeds. Chica has disappeared though – she did not appear since several days although she did not miss a single day having her meals here and sitting on my knees. I fear the worst. But it could also be that she left with some others to save her own health. Freddy has disappeared also and some of the younger birds. Maybe they sensed the oncoming problems and escaped. I really really hope so. What makes me believe this is that I could not detect any symptoms in any other bird.

I will miss Chica dearly. She and Johnny were such a lovely couple and I am so sad now that this happened. Chica was one of the most beautiful pigeons here and so very gentle. I hope that she is doing well. I am heartbroken that she is gone. Chica was Woody and Maggie’s last child (before they were “put” on plaster eggs) and had always slept on our balcony during the night for a long time before she left to look for a partner for the first time.

This was Chica with her sister Micky (from an earlier batch and Gino’s mate):




After a bath:




She was our little water rat…



Chica and her mommy Maggie


Chica right in the middle


wet T-shirt party….


Finally!!! Chica has a partner – Johnny – Jimi’s son


isn’t he handsome????


look at her – how happy she is!



January 17, 2013

Lucky is tossing Seeds and Gino is getting a brandnew House

From the

Diary as of 11/4 – 11/11/2012

11/4   Gino still does not fly around. Besides being on recovery I think this is also due to his moult he is still in. His tail feathers are a mess and this must be difficult to navigate. Did I already say that he is a clever little boy?

Lucky’s behaviour today was strange. He was tossing a lot of seed and always threw his head back when he wanted to eat larger seeds. I also saw him vomiting so I cought him and checked his mouth: bright red. So I gave him immediately a Spartrix and also Propolis. What a mess – this is not good and I can only hope that no more pijjies are getting sick. This damn weather – I knew it would have consequences.

Because Gino was sick and I wanted Micky to have more peace on the balcony while she would be sitting on eggs I decided to build them a wooden house which would be much better than the hanging planting pot. Especially when it would be getting really cold and windy a complete house would give them shelter and protection. Here are the pics:


Standing on top means: “this is mine!!!!! Don’t you dare!!!”


Micky is “training” inside


“don’t come nearer! Or I call my MAN”


Gino: “my house – my wife!”


Gino totally cool on his new villa




Gino: “Ha – I am the MAN!”

You cannot imagine how quickly they both adapted to their new house. But of course they are my clever babies!!!

Gino is fully his old self again and comes inside for eating together with Micky AT LEAST 4 times a day. Can you believe that? But he has to gain some weight still and he is definitely eating like a little pig! You should see them both, when they are running- yes running – inside into our bedroom where THEIR food bowl is, passing Rudi who always tries to get hold of Gino to beat him up – (I think this is not so serious as it sounds though). Gino and Micky actually look like little soldiers who are running in a kind of goose step one behind the other, which makes us laugh each time. I hope I will manage to get this on video one day. They always make our day – as bad as it may have begun.
My experiment fully worked in Gino’s case: when I noticed his bright red mouth I gave him 2 Spartrix on 2 subsequent days and additionally Propolis (the pure mother tincture in pharmacy quality only for human consumption) mixed in his millet baby cereal. On day 3 I additionally gave him Bene Bac (pro-biotic) and this for the following 3 days. You could actually see how he improved from day to day. So no heavy medication only the 2 Spartrix and then supporting his own immune system.

Currently I am a bit puzzled about Lucky. Last Sunday HE started to behave as if something was wrong – tossing his seed a bit around, not eating much, vomiting once. So I checked his mouth and there it was: bright red colour. Same program as with Gino – 2 Spartrix and Propolis on 2 subsequent days, then only Propolis and Bene Bac. On day 3 his appetite was back and he was much more vivid. He stopped vomiting on day 4.

I continued with this program until he did not show any symptoms any more. Strange was only the seed tossing which reminded me of PMV. But there were no other symptoms visible to me which could have led me to another infection such as Salmonella, where symptoms can be similar. Never had a case though. His poops were perfect.

My girls are all healthy. And this is obviously due to the Propolis I give them twice a week. I mean it is difficult to say that this always works in any case but my conclusion is that the Propolis definitely strengthens their immune system in addition to good food and the ACV water. If this really helps them spare all the heavy medication I would say this is it to keep them healthy. It is so much motivation to continue and you get so much back from these dear souls. Not a single day passes where I do not laugh or smile about their little sillynesses. This is the true life.

Back to the entries:

11/5   Gave Lucky another Spartrix and Propolis pellet and also Bene Bac to strengthen his immune system. He was still vomiting – saw it in the morning in his sleeping basket. Other than that he seemed to do quite okay. But he was still tossing his seed. Strange…

11/6   This morning I againl found some vomit in Lucky’s sleeping basket – only very few but still some. So there was still an issue to take care of. I tried to treat this by strengthening his immune system with Propolis and Bene Bac. I waited until he was sitting on Emma’s nest again and then gave him the Propolis directly mixed in some applesauce. I fed this with a small syringe.

If he was not going to be perfectly okay again within the next 3 days I would have to start him on Metronidazole although I did not like the idea. But I hoped this would not be necessary and that he would be able to fight the canker off by himself. He was definitely feeling better already because he ate quite well again and only tossed the large seeds into the air. His mouth was not as red as before when I checked him this morning.

11/7   Lucky seemed to have improved a little bit more. So as long as it was not getting worse I continued to give him Propolis and Bene Bac. So far it has worked. Under no circumstances I wanted to face the same problems again when Lucky nearly suffocated from canker in his trachea the last time.

11/8   I am still giving Lucky Propolis and Bene Bac as long as he is still tossing seed. I assume that he might have a virus infection but don’t ask me what. But at least he seems to be able to fight this off by himself.

11/9   Another portion of Propolis and Bene Bac. The latter would be the last now. But I will continue to give him Propolis every other day.

I am still puzzled about Lucky’s behaviour though. He still tosses the larger seeds such as corn and large sunflower hearts into the air and manages to actually eat one of 5. Would look funny if I did not know better. The smaller seeds such as millet, sesam, wheat are no problem for him to eat. Could it be that the “inflammation” from the canker somehow affected the nerves of his tongue so that he has these difficulties with swallowing properly? His mouth is still a bit reddish but far not as bad as at the beginning. Otherwise his behaviour is totally normal, his poop is absolutely perfect. He does not have any tremors or any other symptoms I could detect. He feels normal weight. He is flying as usual. I am quite at the end of my wits.

11/10   This morning I weighed Lucky to make sure that he can eat enough and was not loosing too much weight. I think I need not worry – he has 406 gr and does not feel thin at all. I gave him his Propolis pellet but stopped the Bene Bac.

There was also an improvement to see today:  he was tossing the seed far less than yesterday and he had a good appetite. So I would continue giving him Propolis every day until these symptoms have disappeared.

Btw – Propolis also works on viruses and fungi. I am so grateful that I found this stuff – if only more people would believe in treating with this instead of dumping all those chemicals into their poor birds. I think I should take it myself on a regular base again. If only the stuff would not taste so badly.


January 28, 2012

PMV is receding due to the Carrot Juice but Micky is really sick

From the

Diary as of 11/7 -11/15/2011

11/7  It was very frustrating and worrying at first when I realized that this happened again. I was so very much hoping that I i.e. the poor pijjies would have been spared to face this terrible sickness AGAIN. But – luckily – it turned out that it was not as bad as it looked like at first. Besides Micky everyone else who got infected seemedto be able to fight it off by themselves i.e. with the help of extra food and the carrot juice. I am quite convinced that the carrot juice really helped.

I made sure though that all sick pijjies were able to feed themselves and they were. I fed Woody – who showed the heaviest symptoms besides Micky – partially from my hand in order to check on him thoroughly, whether he was able to pick up the seeds properly. Often it looks as if they are eating when in fact they cannot swallow the seed. I also gave him the carrot juice per syringe several times to make sure that he really had his share – did the same with Lucky.

In the meanwhile I have not seen any more sick pijjies. Woody is still keeping his head a bit tilted though – so does Lucky – but that’s all. They are a bit more anxious than usual still but everything else works fine. They are all in good mood, preening as usual, flying without any problems.

Micky though is a different case. She is inside, I am keeping her in the hospital box.

She has lost her ability to eat by herself and cannot fly at all. When she tries to helicopter it mostly ends in uncontrolled movements. Still she is in good mood and tries again and again. She becomes quite frustrated when she tries to eat and cannot pick up the seed i.e. swallow it but then I take her on my arm and comfort her. She has become such a sweet pet pigeon who loves to be cuddled and stroked the whole day

Weighing day for Micky – amazingly she had more than I thought: 308 gr. She had felt very thin.

11/8  Micky and Pina got their Calcivet.

11/9   Micky has 315 gr in the meanwhile – so she gained 7 gr in 2 days. Wow!!!

11/10   Micky, Pina and Emily got their Calcivet. I am continuing this with all the females no matter whether sick or not.

11/11   It’s Friday and nothing special.

11/12   Weighing day for Micky again: still 315 gr

Pina and Rudi are heavily cuddling with each other:


11/13   Pina laid her first egg #47  in the evening after I had given her Calcivet in the morning. It was so funny when I checked on her in the evening because she did not want to go back to her box instead she was sitting on the little platform in the bookshelf . When I got out the ladder she immediately came towards me growling and making her cat’s arched back to protect her nest. She knew exactly that I wanted to have a sneek peak into her nest.

Lucky spent his night somewhere else but was back in the very early morning.

11/14   Let Micky out in our bedroom to give her some opportunity to stretch herself but she rather loved to sit on my shoulder or arm. She always wants to be close – still irritated when outside her box.

11/15   Pina laid her second egg which is #48 and another perfect one! She received another portion of Calcivet.


January 25, 2012

New Outbreak of PMV and Emma continues to lay awful Eggs

From the

Diary as of 11/1 – 11/6/2011

11/1   We have a new outbreak of PMV.

This time it was our Micky who started to show the first symptoms – I noticed that she was showing light symptoms for a few days but on last Sunday I was sure: real stargazing. She had problems to pick up the seed, she was very timid, very nervous. She stumbled from time to time.

So today I took Micky in. She was only skin and bones in the meanwhile and I was amazed that this morning she was still able to fly although she was very wobbly on her legs. So maybe she took her last energy to come to our balcony and walked straight inside. She was the only one with quite bad symptoms – although far not as bad as our other pijjies were 2 years ago – like Pina f.e. who could not eat for several months as you know.

Woody (Micky’s father)  was also showing symptoms but much less and he could eat properly. His mate Maggie did not show any signs at all.

I also realized that Lucky was having the first signs – yes, Lucky as well, who had the bad canker infection not long ago, holding head differently, being more nervous etc. simply the signs which indicate the existance of the virus. So far no real seizures and all can fly properly – even Micky who was showing the worst symptoms – but not all the time – thank heaven. This time it seemed to be a weaker strain of the virus or “our” pijjies were stronger to fight it off.

Well – I have to take it as it is: as long as they are able to eat – maybe with some help if necessary – there was nothing that I could do besides giving them some more care. There is no way to separate the infected ones from the healthy ones as the incubation time had already done its work.

This time I have started them all on carrot juice, an advice Brad Gibson was talking about in his forum: http://www.facebook.com/pages/Pigeon-Pet-Chat/264318763604779.
Each pigeon that I could get hold of got some carrot juice with the syringe the others had to take their carrot juice from the drinking pots I always have on the balustrade. I gave them no choice – only carrot juice with water – 50/50.

It was quite funny to watch them how they lurked around the drinking pot. They waited apparently for the first to try it and this was then the signal to try it too. Some of them were really pissed off, some seemed to love the mixture of juice and water. To be honest I was amazed that they drank the stuff at all – imagine it is a bright orange liquid despite the 50/50 mixture but apparently the smell was good and most of them tried it.

Micky was and still is stargazing, loses her balance from time to time, is very fearful and easily shocked, seems to be in a trance from time to time and has some minor spasms in her feet but only for some minutes. She was and still is having seizures – circling/panicking – but then I take her out and stroke her softly and she stops immediately her trembling and becomes very calm. She is still trying to eat a few seeds but tosses 90% of them around but I have given her a little food dish so that she can continue to try. She becomes easily frustrated though and quickly gives up.

I put her on tubefeeding and she eats 3 x 20 ml without any problems – no vomiting so far. I made baby rice flakes with apple sauce and joghurt and added carrot juice each time. In the meanwhile she gets carrot juice in the evening and eats 50 thawed peas for supper. Of course she has a warm water bottle beneath her box so that it is cosy warm for her. She often perches either on the bottom or on the little saucer covered with kitchen paper I always put in the boxes and seems to relax. She is often taking a little nap which is really good for her. But she still has her seizures especially during the morning. Thank heaven her digestion works good and her poops look good – I am quite amazed about this.

Thank heaven Pina and Rudi don’t make a fuss this time – maybe they know in the meanwhile that Micky is no threat for them. I think there is a good chance that she will recover again.

Btw – Micky is the sister of Lucky from a different batch and such a sweet one. I would be really sad if we could not save her. And Woody is the father of Lucky and Micky. Lucky is still showing only some light symptoms – just a bit stargazing sometimes i.e. rather tilting his head to one side than holding it straight. The same applies to Woody but his symptoms are slightly worse than Lucky’s. Both can eat normally and behave normally besides showing some unusual nervousness and light head tremors. I have treated both with carrot juice too.

Emma still does not show any symptoms at all (she never had PMV), neither does Rudi. She is eating very well and is flying around. Pina and Jimi should be immune as we know. But I treated them also with carrot juice – just in case. Loki and Lotti do not show symptoms either. There are a few more pijjies which are coming regularly – some show light symptoms – others none at all. So I think that this is really a weaker strain of PMV or the pijjies from our balcony have become stronger due to the food and clean water supply and can fight it off themselves. Still my hopes that this would never happen again have ended in smoke. Oh my – as if we had not had enough sick and injured pijjies!!! Apparently this is a never ending story….

11/3   Nothing new. Nursing Micky, observing the others closely. No additional sick pigeons.

11/4  Emily laid another awful egg – it was #79 and she also made some very strange poops but only once:

As you can see the egg was broken again but there was a membrane that covered the hole so that nothing of the content was spilled. So Emma apparently is still suffering from calcium deficiency.

11/6   Micky is safe in the hospital box. There is no way that she can survive outside. I am so glad that I have her inside.


Blog at WordPress.com.