Pair losing interest in nest?

Discussion in 'Pigeons and Doves' started by Gibs, Jun 20, 2017.

  1. Gibs

    Gibs Just Hatched

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    Hey guys,

    My two mated Frillbacks keep laying eggs but not incubating them for longer than a day or two, and then mating again almost immediately. Has anyone else had experience with that?

    I know there are some reasons a pair might normally abandon their nest (e.g, if the nest were invaded by other animals, or if multiple pairs were competing for space), but I can't think of any that apply here. I have only these two birds, and they have only one place to nest. So it's not like they're being pushed out or moving to a place they like better - in fact, the last time they did this (a couple days ago), the new egg they laid was right next to their old nest.

    I grabbed the eggs from the old nest and examined them - not cracked, not dirty, nothing to suggest they weren't viable or were no longer recognizable as "eggs." In fact, when I candled them I saw that both were fertile and had about 3-4 days of normal development, but of course both had died when the parents stopped incubation. :(

    These are fairly inexperienced birds, and they certainly had a few mishaps early on - if I remember correctly, they didn't really try to incubate their first couple of clutches; and they've also had a couple of clutches that turned out to be infertile. The male is not always faithful about sharing incubation duties, either... but on the other hand, they did manage to lay a fertile clutch, incubate them fully and raise both squabs a couple of months ago. (Both squabs are gone now, so again, it's not like they're interfering.) I have no idea why they were successful that time, and why they're losing interest now.

    I'm not desperate for squabs, so I probably won't try artificial incubation or anything like that... just wondering if there's any circumstance I can change to make them more likely to stick with their latest clutch. I know it's exhausting for a hen's body to produce eggs over and over, so I just can't puzzle this out!
     
    biophiliac likes this.
  2. jak2002003

    jak2002003 Overrun With Chickens

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    That's very strange.

    Check the nest for biting mites or ants. Sometimes these creatures will irritate the birds in the night and cause them to leave the nest.

    Also make sure the nest is not getting overheated in direct sun.
     
    Hokum Coco likes this.
  3. Hokum Coco

    Hokum Coco Overrun With Chickens

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    I may be experiencing the same difficulty. I have on pair of homers who just laid a pair of eggs in a hooded cat litter container filled with pine shavings. They abandon the first set of eggs and now are about to lay a second set of eggs immediately behind the first clutch. This is their first breeding season just for the record.
     
    biophiliac likes this.
  4. CascadiaRiver

    CascadiaRiver Chillin' With My Peeps

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    If worse comes to worse you could try getting a good pair or rollers (like birmingham rollers) who are great parents to raise the others eggs for you! :)
     
  5. Hokum Coco

    Hokum Coco Overrun With Chickens

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    I would trade your cock bird. He has commitment issues if this continues. Some times things as simple as car horns or thunder storms have been know to spook unseasoned pairs.

    On another note my pair that abandoned their first clutch of eggs are on their second clutch and they should hatch in about 5+- more days in a perfect world. My flock number is 37 birth control will kick in at about 50 birds. I have 5 blue bars with white flights or markings this is coming from a flock of solid white breeders. Just when you think you know what to expect from your birds genetics seem to throw you some surprises.
     
    Last edited: Jul 11, 2017
    biophiliac likes this.
  6. donut314

    donut314 Out Of The Brooder

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    I have had a pair before that did not produce anything even though they were the most dominant pair in the coop. I had 8 nest box and 4 pairs of pigeon. They controlled 4 nest box. Each time they laid eggs, I see the female sitting on the eggs for 5-6 days and then next day I see the eggs on the floor. A week later, I see new eggs in the nest box. This went on for about two months and the other pairs had many squabs leave their nest already. I concluded that the male was either infertile, or spend way too much time dominating the whole place and not tending to the eggs. I replaced the male and their first clutch of eggs hatched two beautiful chicks. Not only did my coop become more stable with the aggressive male gone, but squab production is at max. And I'm pretty sure that female pigeon is glad it's found a more committed mate.

    In conclusion, replace the male.
     
    jak2002003, Hokum Coco and biophiliac like this.
  7. jak2002003

    jak2002003 Overrun With Chickens

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    I have similar experience with a dominant male pigeon... but he has never paired up, even through there are plenty are females about for him, and he just likes to harass all the other pigeons and get in their nesting boxes and cause trouble. I does not try to harm any chicks thankfully, but he will keep fighting with the other males in their nest boxes...

    I am selling half my stock today.. and he is one that will go!!!
     
    biophiliac likes this.
  8. Hokum Coco

    Hokum Coco Overrun With Chickens

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    Update on my problem pairing I got my dates mixed up. I checked their eggs today one has pipped.
     
    biophiliac likes this.
  9. Hokum Coco

    Hokum Coco Overrun With Chickens

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    Update on my problem pairing I got my dates mixed up. I checked their eggs today one has pipped.
     

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