Johnny and Princess officially meet Fang

Johnny and Princess officially meet Fang

I wanted to wait a week for Johnny and Princess to get acclimated to their new surroundings before having them come out and to introduce them to Fang. But that didn’t stop the mutual curiosity between the cages. Fang would sometimes find himself on the far end of his cage and look into Johnny & Princess’ space. And vice versa… So the day finally arrived for a new chapter in their lives. I opened the cage door wide open for Johnny and Princess to explore. I did not want to handle them up as to raise an alarm. The door was left open for about an hour and they had absolutely no interest in coming out. I picked up Fang and placed him inside Johnny and Princess’ cage. These three got along so well! I believe that Fang truly likes having other doves around. Although he enjoyed Elvis and Luigi’s presence, they were so much larger. I’m so happy to see this trio get along so...

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Cage Remodel For Doves

Cage Remodel For Doves

The cage that was home to pigeons Luigi and Elvis would have to be modified to house doves. In preparation for Johnny and Princess’ arrival, I outfitted the cage to meet their needs. As is, the cage is very basic… Johnny and Princess would inherit Luigi and Elvis’ two large mirrors and three half-logs, but they would need more. The first thing that popped into mind was to put in a little deck/shelf for them. I re-positioned Luigi and Elvis’ mirrors so that I could place the deck in a way that they could have a good view of Fang, their next door neighbor. These shelves are made for parrots, so to make them user friendly, I lined them with cut linoleum and covered them with a face towel. Because the doves favored this spot, I secured the towel with a couple of binder clips to keep the towels from moving and shifting. Next, I installed one of those comfy perches for them to lounge on. This would turn out to be their favorite place to nap on. Finally, Johnny and Princess would need a little roosting box for them to sleep, and possibly nest, in. I found one on Amazon that was the perfect size. I secured the box by placing it on on a linoleum lined shelf, screwing hooks on the top and back, and fastening to the box to the cage with cable ties. I also used a extra long cable tie to anchor the shelf itself to the top of the cage as triple security. And Voilà! A box that will not be in danger of falling and harming Johnny and Princess! And there you go…. Johnny and Princess’ new...

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Welcome Johnny & Princess

Welcome Johnny & Princess

After mourning Luigi’s loss, we were ready to fill the void of the empty cage. Elvis was adopted soon after being back at Marin Humane Society. It appears that another pigeon named Heath was rescued at the same time. Maybe they coupled and were adopted together? That would be awesome. Just when we were considering taking in new birds, I saw Elizabeth’s post in the Palomacy Pigeon & Dove Adoptions Facebook Page regarding placement for ring-necked doves Adam & Lychee. It seemed like they needed a home and doves would make an ideal neighbor for Fang. Luigi and Elvis were good neighbors for him but I think doves would be a better fit in that space. The only thing about Adam & Lychee was that they needed to be the only doves in the house due to Adam’s jealousy over Lychee. I reached out to Elizabeth Young of Palomacy Pigeon & Dove Adoptions to get her feedback. As cute as Adam and Lychee are, it did not seem like a suitable match, so I asked Elizabeth to suggest a couple of doves that would be a good fit in our home. Enter Johnny & Princess. Johnny and Princess are ring-necked doves about 8 years old. I know little of their history but it sounds as if their previous owner really loved and cared for them. Unfortunately, their previous owner passed away and they had to be rescued. Elizabeth suggested that these two would be ideal for us. After reading their story, I felt we could provide a good home for these older doves. I readied the cage for their arrival. I will document my cage preparation in a separate blog entry. Elizabeth brought Johnny and Princess to our home on April 7th. These two doves are amazingly sweet and seem so trusting. They took to their cage and explored every inch of it. I was happy when they discovered the nesting box and made themselves snug. Below are a collection of pictures of Johnny and Princess in various states of curiosity and comfort. We are very happy to provide Johnny and Princess a new forever...

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Ellen and Fang: A Special Friendship

Ellen and Fang: A Special Friendship

Ever since Ellen entered our lives, I didn’t realize how special pigeons and doves were. These birds always come up with something to totally surprise me. Our old dove Fang is normally a gentle bird who minds his own business and pretty much chill for most of the time. At night he normally sleeps next to his shelf next to his mirror. The night Luigi was sick and passed away, Fang stood on his log on the opposite side of the cage right next to Luigi the entire night. He’s never done that before or since. It’s as if Fang knew it was Luigi’s last night and was trying to comfort him the only way he could. Usually when when Ellen is off egg duties from Portia and Rebel, he likes to come into the room and perches on top of the cage to gaze out the window. He has always been curious toward Fang and but more so recently after not having Luigi and Elvis in the room. Now Ellen likes to be near Fang. It’s as if Ellen knows Fang is lonely and is trying to offer some companionship. And when given the opportunity for supervised open cage time. Ellen hops right in! There are no signs of aggression or danger. On contrary, Fang is so comfortable with Ellen immediate presence that he completely relaxes to the point of falling asleep. These two are definite buddies. I love these birds and they never cease to amaze...

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Dolce addio Luigi

Dolce addio Luigi

It all started in June of 2012 when an injured homing pigeon showed up in your backyard. Down the line this self-rescue pigeon would move in with us on his own accord and we would name him Ellen. But that’s many months down the line and not the focus of this story. But at the time Sean and I had no experience with pigeons and had no clue how to proceed. Sean found Elizabeth Young of Palomacy Pigeon and Dove Rescue and reached out to her. Elizabeth provided us with useful information and invited us to attend a Mickacoo Event up in Tiburon. The event was informative and we met a lot of wonderful people and birds. But a couple of pigeons caught our eye. I just remember seeing a very stoic king pigeon and a beautiful fantail pigeon together in a cage. These two were just gorgeous.  Their names were Lola and Luigi. Learning that they were a gay couple endeared them to us even more. When we discovered that they were up for adoption, we jumped at the chance at putting in an application. We were so happy to get the approval. At the time they were being fostered by Jill McMurchy. She graciously drove them all the way up from her home on Labor Day weekend. It was a sheer joy just to watch Lorenzo and Luigi to go through their daily routine. They were so devoted to each other.   And when given a couple of fake eggs, these two doted like expecting parents. A little over a year of having them, we noticed that Lorenzo was limping. Luigi was playing nurse maid to him and was always by his side. Lorenzo had an advanced tumor in his leg. Early on Luigi would always snuggle up against Lorenzo’s leg, as if he knew there was something wrong and was trying to keep that area of his body comfortable. We drove the pair to the vet, where Lorenzo was put to sleep. At the time Sean was holding Luigi. Sean told me that he felt Luigi collapse in his hands the moment Lorenzo passed. Luigi was devastated by the loss of his mate. He would coo sadly alone in the coop. I thought the answer was another pigeon, which was why we adopted Elvis so quickly. Those two were never cozy with each other. The best description would be that they simply co-existed. About a month ago I noticed that Luigi would get out of breath easily when he was out of his cage for exercise time. Also, he was not as perky or adventurous. Oftentimes he would just stay in one spot the entire time....

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