The Magic Café
Username:
Password:
[ Lost Password ]
  [ Forgot Username ]
The Magic Cafe Forum Index » » Polly wants a cracker... » » Should I get in to Dove magic or..? (1 Likes) Printer Friendly Version

 Go to page 1~2 [Next]
Zephury
View Profile
Elite user
Hollywood, FL
488 Posts

Profile of Zephury
I'm an amateur, but I am fully committed with a dream of going large, lots of dedication, many, many hours of practicing. Just curious on what your guy's standpoint is on Doves. At what point in a magician's career or practice should he or she get involved with Doves? Is it a very advanced stage of magic or is it the same as tackling playing cards.. just with the added affection, and care for the doves of course. In no means am I tying the part of maintaining them in to this. I have pets and I love them all just as much as my family. What I'm trying to ask is.. is it most likely too advanced for me? So far all I've touched is cards, coins, thumb tips, and a few more close-up props. Is there more that I should experience before getting involved in to doves or magic with a different animal? I'm still sort of deciding on what animal I will do magic with but Dove seems to be in the lead so far. Bunny is in second. Any pros and cons to the two? Which can provide more impressive stunts based on your opinion? Though, I will assume doves considering that I've heard rabbits are very stationary in magic but I could be wrong, please correct me if I am. Let me know what I'm walking in to, please! It will probably be a few months before I actually take the step of getting an animal for performing though and I have a lot of time to decide, plan and learn. Please set me in the right direction.

Just a few misc. questions..

Do people use owl's for magic? If so, can you PLEASE link me a video of it. Are they practical?

What are some other out of the ordinary animals that people use for magic?
Dave Scribner
View Profile
Assistant Manager
Lake Hopatcong, NJ
5081 Posts

Profile of Dave Scribner
As a dove worker for over 40 years, my first response to you is DON'T. During my career I've seen many magicians jump in to the art and a very short time later find it isn't what they want to do. Dove magic is much different that working with other items like cards and coins etc. If you decide not to use cards, you just toss them in a draw and move on. Dove's are live animals and it'sot always easy to get rid of them. If you are really serious about dove magic, start by getting a good library of books and videos. Not for performance but to understand what is involved and how to take care of your doves. At the top of this forum is a topic listing many many sources. I always recommend the Tony Clark series, Andy Amyx doves 101 and General Grants How to make a living stealing...These resources give you all the information you need for the care and feeding of doves, the clothing needed as well as a few ideas for performance.

The first thing is to be sure you have the time and space to work with the doves. If you get new doves, you need to spend at least one hour everyday with each one. Training takes a minium of 6 weeks per dove before you start thinking of effects. This is just a training period. After that period, you must work with them everyday.

You'll need to get a cage large enough to allow the doves to excercise. I always recommend a minimum of 24"H x24"W x18"D. This will work for no more than 2 birds. Make doves are very territorial and will fight if kept in the same cage. In addition to the Cage, you'll need food, vitamins, treats, periodic vet bills and again, lots of time.

Doves have what is called Dander. This is a powdery substance that besides difficult to clean up, can be dangerous to your health. The dust can easily get into your lungs. This is very dangerous. A well known Dove worker recently required double lung transplants because of this. It's not healthy to keep them in the house with you and definitely not in the same room such as a bedroom. Years ago, I made the mistake of building an aviary in my basement. I had 31 birds there and I'm still cleaning up the dust. My wife can't go into the basement because of her asthma.

Never clip the wings and only trim the tail minimally to keep the bird looking good.

If you decide to get doves, do not buy them from a pet store. Pet stores are a business and do not care for their birds as they should. I've posted many times throughout this forum about doves but if you have a specific question, I'd be more than happy to help you out.

As to your last question about owl and other animals, I could be wrong but I believe it's illegal to own an owl in many states. There are many topics in this forum where members have asked about other animals. The basic answer is you can use almost any animal you want as long as you have the time and patience to work with them. Your props need to be adjusted to accomodate them. The question you need to ask yourself is why?
Where the magic begins
Zephury
View Profile
Elite user
Hollywood, FL
488 Posts

Profile of Zephury
Dave, thanks for such an amazing response! I definitely learned quite a bit from reading it. Sounds like it's just a bit more work than I had though. When it comes to animals, I'll give myself 1 solid year.. if I continue for 365 days in a row to want to do dove magic or anything with a different animal without second guess for 1 years, that's the point that I'll tackle it. 1 hour with each dove a day can be time consuming and I'm worried when I work that I may not have 2-4 hours a day depending on how many I get. I assume it's not fair to the bird to only get 1 dove.
Dave Scribner
View Profile
Assistant Manager
Lake Hopatcong, NJ
5081 Posts

Profile of Dave Scribner
I've know quite a few dove workers that only had one bird and there is nothing wrong with that. The issue you'll have is with mating. If you get two males, they have to be kept in separate cages because of territorial issues. They'll fight like crazy. If you get a male and female, you run the risk (I never thought of it as risk because I wanted it) of having babies. Two females will not mate but they can lay infertile eggs.
Where the magic begins
latentimage
View Profile
Elite user
No More Room In Hell..
445 Posts

Profile of latentimage
The advice Dave has given here is 100%. It's a lot of work. So many things can go wrong. Additionally, doves wake up in a new world every day, and if you don't constantly keep at it, things can go awry pretty quickly.

I don't think there would be anything wrong with having one bird, really. It's probably a good way to get used to training and handling doves. As Dave mentioned, I do believe that Owls are generally illegal to own in the United States. A full grown owl is probably pretty dangerous anyway, and quite possibly inappropriate for magic. I love owls though, and it's a cool thought.

Another factor you should probably consider is where you are performing and the structure of your show. You mentioned that you do cards and coins, which is generally considered to be close up magic. With doves and other animals, we are mostly talking about the stage. Then, you have to consider where you would want to put such a piece in your stage act. Unless you are opening with it, you would need to have another person to set up all of your stuff that absolutely knows what they are doing. If they don't, your entire act can be ruined or even worse, you could possibly end up producing dead or maimed bird.

If you just want to produce one dove without any body loads in a close up situation, check out Johnny Thompson's Commercial Classics DVD and learn his no load livestock appearance. This sounds like it would be a great place for you to get started if you want a basic idea of what it's like to work with birds, and is something you could incorporate into your act relatively quickly.

Best,

Allen
"Come to the edge," he said, They Said "We Are Afraid," "Come to the edge," he said, They Came, He Pushed Them...And They Flew. -Apollinaire

"If there be a skeptical star, I was born under it. Yet I have lived all my days in complete astonishment." -W. MacNeile Dixon
Regan
View Profile
Inner circle
U.S.A.
5699 Posts

Profile of Regan
I can't add anything to what Dave said. He is an expert when it comes to doves. I will only ask that you please take your time with the decision. Research everything you can BEFORE you get any doves! It took me a long time before I decided to take the plunge. I always knew I wanted to do dove magic, but I knew it was a serious decision. When I finally decided to go for it I started researching and trying to find out everything I could. I probably spent over 5 years with that before I thought I was ready. After all that, I prepared a place for them to live and bought my doves. It was only then that I began the long process trying to obtain everything I needed to get started in with the magic part. I spent about 2 months training my doves while I was gathering all the props, etc.
Without the help of Dave and so many others I would have never made it. I owe so many a huge debt of gratitude! Dove magic requires a ton of commitment and work, but it is very rewarding. Only you can decide if it is right for you, but please keep the doves in mind, and put their care and welfare above all else.
Mister Mystery
Robin4Kids
View Profile
Veteran user
Lower Alabama
396 Posts

Profile of Robin4Kids
Especially if you do any kids' or family shows, I would highly recommend starting off with a bunny. No real advantage in caring for them but I think they definitely win out with the "cute" factor. If you are only doing adult shows then doves can be more magical.
DoveDaddy
View Profile
New user
63 Posts

Profile of DoveDaddy
Dear Zephury,

All wise advice previously posted on this thread, however, I believe that sometimes well-meaning professionals tend to unfortunately discourage young magi from fully embracing dove magic. Let us not forget that every professional dove worker was once a beginner, each with their own dream. Fifteen years ago, when my son was 13, his dream was to become a professional dove magician and so he made the committed decision to go “all in” with dove magic. That decision together with his hard work and determination has netted him a career as a professional magician with his marquee act still being his dove act, which has taken him from the Vegas strip across the USA and currently around the world as a featured performer in the #1 largest and best selling magic show on tour in the world:
http://www.theillusionistslive.com/

“Keep true to the dreams of your youth.” Friedrich Schiller
Dave Scribner
View Profile
Assistant Manager
Lake Hopatcong, NJ
5081 Posts

Profile of Dave Scribner
Quote:
On 2014-02-18 11:50, DoveDaddy wrote:
Dear Zephury,

All wise advice previously posted on this thread, however, I believe that sometimes well-meaning professionals tend to unfortunately discourage young magi from fully embracing dove magic. Let us not forget that every professional dove worker was once a beginner, each with their own dream. Fifteen years ago, when my son was 13, his dream was to become a professional dove magician and so he made the committed decision to go “all in” with dove magic. That decision together with his hard work and determination has netted him a career as a professional magician with his marquee act still being his dove act, which has taken him from the Vegas strip across the USA and currently around the world as a featured performer in the #1 largest and best selling magic show on tour in the world:
http://www.theillusionistslive.com/

“Keep true to the dreams of your youth.” Friedrich Schiller



That's all very true but most of us that have been doing dove magic for a long time, got most of our knowledge by trial and error. We aren't necessarily trying to discourage the newbie but are just trying to pass on some of that knowledge so they can make an informed decision. I'm glad your son stuck with his dream but the success stories are outweighed by the not so successful.

My advice is out of caring for the doves not necessarily the magician. People can move on to new things if they don't like what they are doing. The doves are dependent on us to care for them.
Where the magic begins
Bill Hegbli
View Profile
Eternal Order
Fort Wayne, Indiana
22447 Posts

Profile of Bill Hegbli
Not to mention the tremendous cost for the learning process. Just one book or DVD will not give a person all the information they need to successfully take care of, handle, and produce birds magically. Be prepared to spend over a thousand dollars for all the material you will have to wade through to find what works for each individual.

Then to put them in a act, if silent, tables or assistants, music, suits, props, and then all the rehearsal to make it come all together for an entertaining magical act.

If used in a patter act, then it is less, but you still have to find the tricks and routine that will work for your vision.
Regan
View Profile
Inner circle
U.S.A.
5699 Posts

Profile of Regan
Bill is correct, I have bought most of the dove DVDs and/or videos that are available, not to mention the props. I have tried about 4 different types of pockets and holders before finding what worked best for me. I recently decided to sell some of the holders but its not easy to sell dove items because there are so few dove magicians. Not to mention the costumes! I have bought several jackets just for my dove act. You better learn to sew or find a good taylor! Then of course there is the housing for the doves. I spent a lot on that as well.

You really can get lots of money tied up in it. That's why I suggested that you learn all you can about it before you actually get the doves. That way you can make sure its right for you before you get too invested.
Mister Mystery
Scarlett_Fox
View Profile
New user
7 Posts

Profile of Scarlett_Fox
Hi All, I'm from Melbourne, Australia and would like to know which breed of dove is the best for training?
Dave Scribner
View Profile
Assistant Manager
Lake Hopatcong, NJ
5081 Posts

Profile of Dave Scribner
Scarlett, I don't think there is really a single answer to this question. It used to be the best dove to use in magic was the Java or Indian dove but they are difficult to find. I personally always used ring necks both white and brown. If you're concerned about the dove flying off, the silkie is very popular and they don't normally fly but look good. Besides the breed, there is also the question of male versus female. I had success with both however the females seemed to be a little easier to train but that's just my experience.
Where the magic begins
Dick Oslund
View Profile
Inner circle
8363 Posts

Profile of Dick Oslund
Females are usually quiet.
SNEAKY, UNDERHANDED, DEVIOUS,& SURREPTITIOUS ITINERANT MOUNTEBANK
Scarlett_Fox
View Profile
New user
7 Posts

Profile of Scarlett_Fox
Thank you Dave and Dick. There seem to be a quite a few ring necks available in Victoria, Australia but hard to find a white one. Thank you for your responses Smile
Scarlett_Fox
View Profile
New user
7 Posts

Profile of Scarlett_Fox
Dave, you've been in the dove business for sometime, do you have training DVDs or recommendations for someone new?
Dave Scribner
View Profile
Assistant Manager
Lake Hopatcong, NJ
5081 Posts

Profile of Dave Scribner
Scarlett, there's a good list of resources at the top of this forum but I always recommend these:

Tony Clark Unmasked and behind the seams
Andy Amyx Doves 101
Generl Grant How to make a living stealing Doves
Greg Frewin Complete course in Dove Magic ( a bit expensive for the beginner)

http://www.themagiccafe.com/forums/viewt......forum=13
Where the magic begins
Scarlett_Fox
View Profile
New user
7 Posts

Profile of Scarlett_Fox
Thank you so much. I am picking up my white ringnecks this week. Very excited and can't wait for them to make a beautiful addition to our family.
Regan
View Profile
Inner circle
U.S.A.
5699 Posts

Profile of Regan
Scarlett, Dave has some very good lecture notes. As far as know they are still for sale. I have found them very useful. In fact I just re-read them again the other day.

Dave, I have considered getting some Silkies, mainly for the reason you stated above. I don't know if I could ever find any or not, but if I could I would consider buying some. Can Silkies and Javas be kept together?
Mister Mystery
Scarlett_Fox
View Profile
New user
7 Posts

Profile of Scarlett_Fox
Thanks Regan I will look into that also.
The Magic Cafe Forum Index » » Polly wants a cracker... » » Should I get in to Dove magic or..? (1 Likes)
 Go to page 1~2 [Next]
[ Top of Page ]
All content & postings Copyright © 2001-2020 Steve Brooks. All Rights Reserved.
This page was created in 0.16 seconds requiring 5 database queries.
The views and comments expressed on The Magic Café
are not necessarily those of The Magic Café, Steve Brooks, or Steve Brooks Magic.
> Privacy Statement <

ROTFL Billions and billions served! ROTFL