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!



April 27, 2013

Worried about Micky – Chica and Johnny try to conquer the Balcony

I have to apologize again – had several emergencies with our pigeons so the posting had to be left behind….


From the

Diary as of 1/15 – 1/27/2013

1/15   I am really worried about my poor Micky. She is still stargazing heavily and frome time to time she seems to be a bit confused even. Watching her closely. She is flying sometimes like crazy in circles but she always manages to land safely. I cannot keep her inside in a box as I would like to.  She would feel even more stressed. Micky always has been a very difficult patient and even more difficult to handle.

1/16   Micky laid her second egg #14 – another perfect one. Our little princess Pina laid also an egg, her first in this breeding cycle, it is #72

1/18   Pina laid her second egg #73 and it is perfect again. So calcium supply for Pina is enough.

1/19   Chica finally has found a partner. After she tried to get Rudi and did not succeed she even tried to make eyes for Gino. But Gino has Micky as his mate and besides running after any female he is not really interested. So Chica chose Johnny. It is a very nice couple and I wonder whether they will stay together. Johnny looks like Jimi, is only a bit smaller. The only downside currently is that they both try to stay on the balcony as well. That cannot work!!!


1/21   Emma is off her nest and cuddling with Lucky. Oh my – now it is calcium time again every day until she lays.

1/22   Maggie is also off her plaster eggs.

1/23   Chica and Johnny are becoming more and more aggressive towards Emma and Lucky. I have seen Chica fighting with Emma several times. This cannot be tolerated! This is much too much stress for Emily so I have to grab my old weapon – the water sprayer. It hurts actually but there is no way that they can stay here. They bring only chaos to the group and the peace is gone. They try to conquer Gino as well and want to own his hanging pot which he uses as sleeping place. Poor Gino has to fight off two: Chica and Johnny. This is really unfair. They also fight with Woody and Maggie. Woody and Maggie are Chica’s parents. So there are also problems. Can you believe this? Fighting against all and everyone. This must be stopped.

1/24   Chica and Johnny are stubborn. At least they have learned that they cannot sleep on the balcony. I hope that they will find their own place soon because this all adds a lot of unnecessary stress to all inhabitants.

1/25   Bought a new plastic box for Maggie and Woody. They definitely need a new nest, one that is not getting wet. It’s a similar box like the ones I use as hospital boxes – only much smaller. I put it at the same place where the “temporary” nest was and closed the lid. Only when I put the lid off the box they were ready to inspect the nest more closely. They were not used to a “cave nest” as Emma and Lucky have one, or Micky and Gino. It was simply a small basket which I had placed on a bucket, filled with dried moss and hay. The place was not so good although right beneath the balustrade there was always the danger of rain coming in so that I had to place a large glass plate on top of the balustrade to keep the nest dry. This was not the best solution.

When Maggie and Woody have become used to the new box I will put back the lid on top of it so that no rain can come inside.

1/26   Very cold weather still. The pijjies are in bad mood and very hungry. Chica and Johnny were both very aggressive again, trying to occupy one of the hanging pots near Casa Gino and poor Gino had to fight both of them off all the time. Not easy for our little boy but he is so brave and I try to help him as often as possible.

Micky is still stargazing heavily and not feeling very well. Only when she is inside and perching on the closet she is doing well. But I cannot leave her alone inside when Rudi is not sitting on the nest. This causes problems. It is really hard to see her so confused. She also flies in circles sometimes or is landing in circles. This reminds me of her active PMV infection. But she still manages somehow to cope with this all. Her appetite is very good, her digestion also works perfectly. I hope that she will feel better soon as well. Poor little Micky – she’s had enough problems.

1/27   Today Pina flew out with the others again. I am so happy. It was slightly warmer and I had the balcony door open for a split while I was cleaning up so that she could go out if she wanted and she did. During the last days she definitely did less stargazing and obviously felt a lot better than before. I am really very happy. What a clever girl she is – she rather stayed inside while she felt insecure due to her PMV relapse than risking her health.

Rudi went out today as well without me pushing him (more or less) to take a “round trip”. It was a bit worrying for me in the last weeks that he wanted to stay inside as well while Pina did not feel well. What a mate! The only thing I feared was that he was going to lose his confidence as well and it would not have been good for them to play the couch potatoes all the time. They need sunlight and fresh air!! Just like humans do!! Now everything seems to be on the right path again and the weather is supposed to become better as well.


March 6, 2013

Noisy Night, no-fly for Pina and Rudi and celebrating Gino’s Birthday

From the

Diary as of 1/1 – 1/14/2013

1/1   The night was terribly noisy. I checked on the birds several times during the evening – they could not sleep of course. Gino was very nervous. In order to avoid that he flew off in panic when the worst would start I took him in after 8 pm. I put him in his box and placed him nest to Rudi on the sofa in the living room. Now my sweet little boy was safe and could sleep in peace and I as well without having to check every 5 minutes. All the others sleeping on the balcony were used to the awful noise and did not care really.

1/2   Again Pina as well as Rudi refused to fly out. I don’t understand why. I don’t think it is the construction site opposite of our building because the birds should be used to it in the meanwhile. Even Gino tried to stay inside as long as possible these days before Rudi was having the crisis and tried to “beat” him up. It is so funny to see how Gino tries to provoke Rudi all the time by dancing in front of him and “making faces”. At least it looks like this…

1/3   The weather is quite cool again but still no frost. Still neither Rudi nor Pina want to fly out.  Even Woody stayed inside for at least half an hour, as well as Lucky. Strange. I have no explanation. It cannot really be the temperature because they can cope with worse. But apparently they love to be inside from time to time to enjoy peace and warmth.

1/4   Another day where neither Rudi nor Pina wanted to fly out. I could understand why Pina was reluctant to leave the appartment as long as she was stargazing because she might have felt insecure. But I don’t understand why Rudi wanted to stay inside as well – maybe simply solidarity and emphasis for his wife…

1/5   Today Jimi did not show up for breakfast/lunch. This was the first time since his recovery from PMV 3 years ago that he missed his meal. It could be though that he appeared on the balcony while we were having our nap and he lost patience to wait for me any longer. My poor baby!

1/6   This morning I was totally hysterical and in tears because Jimi still did not show up. I already thought that he had decided to go somewhere else and I would not see him ever again. Stupid me – late in the afternoon – who appeared on the balcony? JIMI!!! Oh my, there must have been an earthquake from the bump the huge rock made when it fell off my heart. No my whole world was totally okay again. And Jimi spent even some time inside…


here you can see the lump in his chest from the tumor


Pina and Jimi – Pina loves her uncle…


Pina – my sweet one


Jimi and Pina dozing off a bit…



1/7   Micky was heavily stargazing today. It looked terrible when she had her little head between her legs. Strange thing was that she was doing fine otherwise. She continued to fly like a little devil and she was eating well. But at the moment she spends most of her time inside, sitting on the closet or in the bedroom listening to classic music. Apparently she needs the peace and I let her of course. With her symptoms I rather have her inside than outside.

1/8   Micky is down from her nest – which is quite late, 2 weeks over – and cuddling with Gino again.  I am glad when she takes longer pauses between laying because this is another stress of course for her. Especially as she is still heavily stargazing. New stress for her now while Gino is chasing her around. So I am glad when they both come inside and spend lots of time on their favourite perching place on the bookshelf in our bedroom. There Micky can find peace.

1/9   I wonder whether these PMV relapses are happening due to crazy weather changes. There must be also a reason why it rather affects the girls and not the boys. I have never seen Jimi with any symptoms ever again. Also I think it might become rather bad for those who have been very young when they were infected. Apparently this damned virus damages more in a young bird than in an adult one. That’s at least my observation.

1/10   Emily’s breeding cycle should be over soon also. I wonder for how long she will prolongate this time. I hope she will stay on the nest for a longer time. Currently she gets Calcivet 3x a week and other than her ongoing problems with the eggs she seems to be totally healthy. She eats with great appetite and loves to fly around when the weather is okay and joins even the flock sometimes when she is not on the nest.

Pina left her eggs today and is together with Rudi all the time again.

1/11   Cleaned off Pina’s nest and removed the eggs.

1/12   The weather has become very cold again. The temperatures stay below freezing and the pijjies are very hungry. I wonder wether this may be an additional reason for Micky’s heavy stargazing.

Feeding the gang several times a day…


only a few of them – but how orderly!!! lol

1/13   We celebrate Gino’s birthday today although we do not know exactly when he crawled out of his egg. He was about 4-6 weeks old when he came to us midth of February last year as a totally emaciated baby that could hardly fly. So we decided to give him his birthday party today on the 13th because this was a lucky day for him and for us also because he is such a wonderful personality.

1/14   Micky laid her first egg #13 and it was perfect. As usual.


February 28, 2013

Snow in the City, Gino remembers his Trauma and a new sick Pigeon on Xmas Eve?

From the

Diary as of 12/12 –  12/24/2012

12/12   Wonderful winter landscape outside: much snow and full sun!!! It is so beautiful and very rare for Munich. We went out for 2 hours, photographing!


12/13   It is quite cold during the day: -6°C. Outside the city the temps even went down below -12°C which is quite cold for December. We decided to stay inside although the sun was still shining. In the afternoon Gino came inside and did not want to go outside again. He went straight away to his favourite place high on the book shelf besides the motorcycle helmet and stayed there. So I prepared his box for the night. Apparently he thought it was too cold for him to spend the night outside so he preferred to stay with us. What a clever little guy.

Micky is much braver but then she has Casa Gino all for herself as she layed her first egg# 11.

12/14   Again Gino came inside to sleep in his box. Apparently he thinks it is still too cold outside. He probably has also bad memories about last winter. No wonder he hardly survived the last one. So sweet that he apparently remembers everything and that Mommy saved his life.

12/15   Our little majesty Prince Gino is sleeping at Hotel Mama again. This little bugger discovered the convenience of having a warm safe box inside with fresh bed linen again instead of a stinky (from his own poops!) hanging planting pot outside on a drafty balcony with all those riffs-ruffs also sleeping there like a bunch of homeless beggars. And in the morning he will get up, well-rested, after a splendid breakfast, ready to visit his royal wife Micky outside in Casa Gino and bid her a good morning. And then he will be ready for the day and court every lady who is unfortunate enough to be near. What a brat!!! We love him sooooooo much!!!

Micky laid her second egg# 12   and Pina is still stargazing and NOT laying. She and Rudi though were on a nice flying trip today after they have not been outside for a week!

Emma is finally off her plaster eggs. This is 1 1/2 weeks later than usual which is good because longer pauses between laying is essential for her and gives her body more peace.

12/16   The weather continues to be crazy – within 3 days the temps jumped from -10°C to 7 °C. This really knocks you off and the pijjies too. You can see that they suffer from these jumps as well. I only hope that this does not trigger another wave of sickness as it often does.

12/19   Finally Pina has laid her first egg #70. It is perfect. Everything is okay and I am sooooo relieved.

12/20   Today Maggie should have laid but apparently she is delaying too. Good for her.

12/21   Today we had to take Robby (a youngster still – 5-6 months old) inside because s/he (still not sure) had canker. I am sure because of the crazy weather. Especially the young ones who do not have their immune system completely built up yet can become  victims of weather stress. He was behaving the common way – a bit listless, rather reluctant to fly around, puffed up, prefering to stay on the balcony on his sleeping perch. I already thought that there was something wrong a few days before but did not want to overdo it with medication but when I discovered that he had vomitted during the night I caught him when he came inside for feeding.

After I had checked him I discovered the common leasions in his reddened mouth and gave him immediately a Spartrix. The next morning he was definitely feeling much better and demanded to be let out. So I decided just to give him another Spartrix and let him free. During the day he came in several times, ate with great appetite. The next day we could not detect a single sign of sickness. He was flying around, ate like a piggy and was happy. I was so glad about his quick recovery.
The Spartrix works really well when you react immediately – especially on younger birds. It is awesome how it helps within hours, especially when they are still strong and have not lost too much weight (essential). If you wait for too long though the strength of the birds deteriorates very quicky and Spartrix does not work equally well and you need additional meds such as Metronidazole.

Pina laid her second egg # 71.

12/22   Robby is doing very well – there is no relapse and he is eating as usual. So this was really a quick healing.

12/23   There won’t be white Christmas again – the temperatures are up to beyond 10 °C. Instead you get some sort of early spring feeling. I don’t mind at all.

12/24   In the afternoon of Xmas Eve I heard a turmoil on the balcony and went out. There was a pigeon lying on his back and desperately trying to get up, twisting his head all the time, while others badly attacked him. I grabbed the poor pigeon immediately and brought him in. Of course my first thought was PMV and I was really mad. Xmas Eve and another sick pigeon and that potentially for weeks!!! What a mess.

I put him in one of my hospital boxes and covered it with a dark cloth to give him some time to calm down. After a few hours we took him out and I checked him for any injuries and symptoms for salmonella etc. But I could not find anything at all. So I put him back into his box – he had something to eat and drink in there. I checked a few times but he was standing completely calm on his perch, no seizures, no stargazing any more. No signs of PMV. This was a relief. So I thought  that this pigeon probably had some sort of trauma – either some predator had tried to get him or he had flewn into something. During the night I checked a few times but he was completely calm.

In the early afternoon Gino came in as usual together with the others to get his supper. After he had fed himself he flew to his favourite perch on the bookshelf and indicated that he wanted to stay for the night. So I prepared his box for the night. What a sweet bird – he wanted to stay with his mom and dad for Christmas Eve. We were truly moved.

Emily laid her first egg #102 today. The shell was rough but undamaged.


February 24, 2013

Lucky and Gino are going mental and Pina has a PMV Relapse

From the

Diary as of 12/1 – 12/11/2012

12/1   Sandy comes in each day for feeding and he is behaving as usual – totally normal, bossy, chases the ladies. I think his wound will heal all by itself and I am not going to do anything.

12/2   Pina left her plaster eggs and has fun with Rudi.

12/3   Was quite sunny today but cold. Rudi and Pina took a nice flight together. I just love it to observe them when they fly together – looks so beautiful. Pina is always leading and Rudi has to be careful that he is not left behind – lol. Pina is a real racer and the most funny thing  about her is that she always spies on me whether I watch her when she is doing her acrobatic tricks. I can see how she always looks in my direction as if she wants to say – “Hey Mommy – do you see what I can do?” What a show boater!!! I am sooooo proud of her.

12/4   Pina and Rudi had a long splishy splashy bath while we were shopping. Half of the carpets were wet despite the towels I always put on the floor – but who cares. They will dry again quickly. Afterwards they enjoyed their “dry out” together in the little flat basket with the kitchenpaper on the shelf by the window. Best place for peeping on all the other pijjies outside on the balcony…

Had 11!!! pigeons sleeping on the balcony tonight. That’s too many because Lucky and Gino are going mental about the intruders and there is a lot of noise on balcony. Not good at all. Don’t want to alert any neighbours… Were Loki and Lotti besides others who spent the night here. They have to go home the next time.

12/5   Loki (the former crop rupture – you can read about it here) and Lotti tried again to sleep on our balcony but this is not tolerable. As I said already – too much noise and I have to be careful because of the neighbours. I understand why they all want to come here but – alas – this is not possible.

12/6   Jimi still has his body tumor and I can do nothing about it. My poor little baby. It hurts me when I see him every day with this lump on his chest. He seems not to bother about it though.

12/7   Emma is still on extra Calcium and I think she will be until the end of her life. I wished she would stop laying eggs entirely but nature apparently has different plans. I don’t like this. If I only knew how old our Emily is…

12/9   Pina is due to lay and she went to her nest on the closet but she did not lay. Maybe tomorrow.

Today was quite sunny again and Gino and Micky were nejoying the sun. Look at the happy little buggers:


Gino – the MAN!


12/10   Pina and Rudi are still together in mating mode and Pina did not lay either. My poor girl is heavily stargazing again and is not feeling very well. I think she has a real PMV attack again and that is probably the reason why she does not lay eggs. I mean it is not a new infection but simply a relapse where the damage the virus caused probably in her brain is causing symptoms again. I think it is the crazy weather that keeps her off balance. I have observed this often. The same happens with humans. When the weather is going nuts so do the humans.

12/11   There is still no improvement regarding Pina’s stargazing. On the other hand she is playing a lot with me and she enjoys her time with Rudi. But this also means stress for her regarding mating time.

I gave her a warm bath today, hoping that this would relax her a bit but she is still not laying. There does NOT seem to be a problem with egg binding though as she is running around as usual and eating well. So we just have to be patient and sit this out.


October 6, 2012

Gino is in Love with Micky and spends his first Night with her

From the

Diary as of 6/16 – 6/25/2012

6/16   Nothing really special. Gino stayed outside during the night, sleeping on the balcony.

6/17   Today Gino decided to come inside and slept tonight in his box – how sweet that he still considers this as his home where he can come when the weather is bad.

6/18   Gino has started to court Micky heavily. This means that he does not let her alone for a second – wherever Micky goes – Gino follows. I think Chica is still too young for him although she has shown a certain interest for him as well but she is just 3 months old. I am not sure what I should think about this relationship. Micky has proven to be a very difficult partner but maybe Gino is developing the neccessary self-understanding now to keep her under control. Does this sound human? It is!

6/19   Emily is off her plaster eggs and cuddles heavily with Lucky again. As our balcony is now really overgrown Emily loves to sit under the leaves of our Tropaeolum. So do the other pijjies when there is place:

Lucky and Adele (left)

Woody and Maggie

Gino and Adele

6/20  Gino continues to court Micky. This is a true surprise and I wonder what is going to happen.

6/22  Gino and Micky spent their first night together in the hanging pot. And they had their first coupling round! Oh sooo SHOCKING!!! Our little boy has become a man!!!

Gino – playing the clown again

6/23   Emily laid her first egg #92. It looked good. The shell was a bit rough still and I do not know about the thickness yet but first glance was satisfying.

6/24   Micky shows heavy symptoms of stargazing today. It is the first time I can watch this since her recovery from PMV. I think it is the stress she currently has with Gino who is fully in love with her and chases her around a bit. They have chosen one of the large hanging pots on our balcony for their nest. I let them for the moment as I do not want to put her into stress additionally while chasing them away. It would break my heart if I have to chase Gino away.

We will see what happens. At the moment Lucky is tolerating them both. If this changes I have to take action unfortunately.

Pina laid her first egg today – #60 – this time everything went normal. She had built her nest on the other closet – on top of the cardboard boxes which I have stored there but properly in the flat basket I providd for her. Apparently the box on the other closet is too warm at the moment. Weather forecast says it will become quite hot next weekend so I think Pina has chosen the right place.

6/25   Gino and Micky were heavily cuddling. Micky was still doing stargazing but not as much as yesterday. The weather was rainy and she spent most of the time preparing the nest. Gino was busy with chasing all the others off. Good boy!!!

Yesterday evening we had to treat Rudi’s foot. I had watched him limping quite heavily during the day so there was something wrong. As it turned out he had injured his toe – the nail was ripped half from the toe and slightly bleeding. Probably he got caught when he brought the nest material to Pina’s nest. So I shortened the nail as much as possible and treated the toe with peroxide to stop the bleeding. Today the limping was a bit better. We will see in the evening how it looks like.

Emma laid her second egg #93. It was smooth and shiny again. I am so relieved that everything seems to have come back to normal.


April 5, 2012

Pina is stargazing again and Micky longs for Freedom

Sorry – I got the posts somehow mixed up – so I had to delete the last one to stay on the correct time sequence….

From the

Diary as of 1/24 – 2/4/2012

1/24   Today Rudi does not seem to feel so well – he did not want to go outside although between the snowshowers the sun was shining a bit. Well – he always knows quite well what is good for him. Clever boy!

1/25   Sun is shining but it is quite cold. Rudi went out again to do what he is always doing:  running after each female and flirting…

Emma, Pina and Micky had their Calcivet and Propolis today.

Lucky is very cheeky. While I was sitting on my sunchair this morning for a few minutes he jumped on me and was walking allover me!!!! No respect!!!!

1/26  Decided to give Micky some probiotics again as her poops have become too soft again.

1/27   Poor Micky sits on my hanging planting pot for the whole day and stares out of the window. I know she wants to be together with the others so very much but this is impossible still. She is not ready to go yet. I have to comfort her from time to time.

01/28  Despite the current cold weather and snow Pina is very brave and goes out several times during the day. Rudi is enjoying his flights with the flock as well. He is heavily courting anyone that looks like a female. What a show-off!!! Even our Jimi has hardly time for eating at the moment – he is also courting like crazy. These pigeon men!!!! What a bunch of posers!!!

01/29  Micky’s poops were better this morning again. Must have been the Bene Bac that I gave her again. Her weight was 335 gr this morning.

01/30   It’s Monday and it was bitter cold during the night: -15°C.

01/31   Again a very cold night and I tested my car: it worked though although a Diesel at -12°C. Pina is off the plaster eggs and cuddles with Rudi again.

02/01   Pina started stargazing quite heavily – so bad I haven’t seen this for ages – with partially her head twisted to the floor. But she has no problems with flying and landing. But I put her on Conium again.

Stopped feeding Micky entirely as she can eat by herself. She will only get her cereal with apples sauce twice a week in the morning because of the additional vitamins and Propolis each evening as long as not everything is okay yet. But I want to check wether she is able to eat by herself entirely.

Emma left her plaster eggs today.

02/02   Pina is still on Conium – and her stargazing has become less. So the glouli are working again.

Now look at this cheeky little face:

02/03   Pina is no longer stargazing. This homeopathic remedy is working miracles. After such a short time it really helps her.

02/04   Despite the bitter cold temperatures our loving couple “took a ride” outside!!! What brave little birds they are.

Put Micky on Bene Bac again. Her poops are much too wet but she keeps her weight of 335 gr.


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