So I researched pigeons but is this a good place to live?

Discussion in 'Pigeons and Doves' started by pringle, Jan 23, 2011.

  1. pringle

    pringle Chillin' With My Peeps

    Apr 16, 2009
    Pepperell,MA
    Ok,so Im really interested in pigeons!They seem not to hard to take care of and in the poultry swaps near our town theres always a person selling them.I think for feed ill mix wildbird food along with chicken scratch or pellets.As for housing im not to sure yet.I have a small 5x5 chickens coop thats about 6 feet high.I was thinking I could screw on an outdoor rabbit hutch thats about 2x4 to it.The top is shingled but the 3 sides facing the outdoors are wire,so I think ill just screw on some wood too the two sides.Does this sound like an ok setup?I plan on just getting one pair in the beggining but could I put 2 in there?I would really like for them to raise babies but what do you do with them?I dont have any more space for building anoher "loft".If I were to butcher them when they were grown what breed of pigeon would you recomend?I would also like a breed that I could let out when I come home from school to fly around a bit to get exercise but what kind of pigeon can fly but would be good for meat?Sorry for so many questions but I think this would be a great new affordible animal to raise for me!
     
  2. Mary Of Exeter

    Mary Of Exeter Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Apr 10, 2009
    Rowan County, NC
    Sounds good to me. You can split the rabbit hutch in half for each pair if you'd like. If I were you, I'd get Kings or Texan Pioneers. They are utility birds and will come out and fly out on the ground and the roof. Nothing that flock flies like homers and rollers are any good for meat purposes.
     
  3. pringle

    pringle Chillin' With My Peeps

    Apr 16, 2009
    Pepperell,MA
    Alright thanks [​IMG] .I was just wondering why I have to split it in half,do they get territorial or something?Ohh and one more question how long will it take once I get them from the swap and put them in there lofts to get to know each other and breed and if they will even lay eggs in the winter.
     
  4. Mary Of Exeter

    Mary Of Exeter Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Apr 10, 2009
    Rowan County, NC
    Yes, they get territorial over their nest box/bowl and perches. You don't want one pair to take it all over and kick out the other pair.
    Give them a month to get settled in and paired up. If they are already mated pairs when you get them, it won't take as long. Just make sure they have a corner squared in or a nest bowl, and nesting material (long-leaf pine needles or straw). When you see them courting and mating, eggs will usually follow about 6-10 days after. The eggs hatch in 18 days, and the babies are weaned at about a month old [​IMG]
    They will lay in the winter if they are motivated. Some pairs will wait longer, and some will jump on it. A good way to get them in the mood, is to give them additional light.
     
  5. pringle

    pringle Chillin' With My Peeps

    Apr 16, 2009
    Pepperell,MA
    Ok thanks,I think ill just start with one pair then work it up too two.When the babies are old enough to leave the nest can I still keep them in the same pen with the parents until there old enough to butcher or will the parents just beat them up?
     
  6. Mary Of Exeter

    Mary Of Exeter Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Apr 10, 2009
    Rowan County, NC
    Most people butcher squabs at about a month old, so you shouldn't have any problems. They'll still be squeaking and too young to bother the parents over a nest or perch. They'll still be bothering them about feeding them [​IMG]
     
  7. pringle

    pringle Chillin' With My Peeps

    Apr 16, 2009
    Pepperell,MA
    Alright thank you for so much info!But I only have 2 more questions,if I were to get white kings could I let them out to fly around say when I got home from school.And second if they cant really fly then that takes some joy out of raising pigeons (for me) and if there is any type that can still fly atleast a little and have ok offspring for butchering and eating.
     
  8. Mary Of Exeter

    Mary Of Exeter Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Apr 10, 2009
    Rowan County, NC
    They can fly [​IMG] Kings were the first pigeons I had, and I loved them! They would follow me around outside, begging for treats. When courting, they will fly more and pop their wings really loud when they take off. I can't think of any meat birds that flock fly like homers do though. The good thing about kings is that they aren't super huge like runts, which can barely reach the roof sometimes. These can actually get around.
     
  9. 95yj

    95yj Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Nov 25, 2009
    Central Vermont
    I live in groton on the pepperel border and just a heads up, we have tons of hawks around here. I used to lose several doves every month to a coopers or sharp shinned, even in the aviary, i eventually had to put up two layers of netting around the entire thing. In december we lost one of our layers, a large standard barred rock, to a sharp shinned in the 2 minutes i took my eyes off them, the hawk was 1/2 the size of the chicken and it couldn't even carry it. Ounce they figure out you have birds they're gonna hang out there. Its great to let them out, just expect to lose a few. Try training them not hang around on the roof or ground, but just fly around and head back in. Talk to some of the breeders at NAS they'll give you some really good info.
     

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