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The Magic Cafe Forum Index » » Polly wants a cracker... » » Improving on pure white color of doves (0 Likes) Printer Friendly Version

Mr. Muggle
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I am giving my ringneck doves liquid vitamins in their water, and wheat germ oil in their morning feedings.

Even so, I have one bird that just isn't that nice, pure white color. She doesn't have any other problems, just 'dirty' wings. In all my literature, I cannot find any other reference or help for improving on a doves coat and color.

The cage is kept immaculate, and all my birds get rain showers once a week.

Anyone have any suggestions?

MM
"Now you're looking for the secret... but you won't find it because you're not really looking. You don't really want to know the secret... You want to be fooled." - The Prestige (2006)
Dave Scribner
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MM, are the wings really dirty or might it just be pigmentation? I have several birds that are never pure white but have a sort of tan overtone.
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Bill Hegbli
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Yes, ring neck doves are not naturally white. It is a cross breeding. They are albinos.

Do not keep the cage to clean. They must have some germs as then they can go the other way and they can get sick easier. They should have the grid on the bottom of the cage so they do not get in their droppings.

Lastly, do you have pirches above one another. One bird could be releaving themself on the other. Again your cage could be to small.
Dave Scribner
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Well, this is the first time I've ever heard of not keeping the cages as clean as possible. I've had my birds for years and years and have never had one get sick. I clean all the cages every week to remove feathers and feces and at least every two months I give them a thorough cleaning with bleach to kill any germs and bacteria.

If you keep the cage clean and give your birds bath water, the bottom grid isn't really necessary although I do use it in some of my cages. Birds are essentially bottom feeders and like to walk on the bottom of the cage to feed. At least all 25 of mine do.

I agree with wm though, that in all probability, your birds are just not pure white in the first place.
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RandyStewart
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The "sterile" or clean environment that Dave describes is absolutely necessary for birds kept indoors. I believe Dave has a large aviary of sorts in his basement. Those same birds might have a tough time fighting off a variety of illness if kept outdoors.
sperris
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If the wings look dirty like little specs of dirt or splotches of black/grey cloring you may have mites. Its probably not mites or lice, but just in case ya' never know.

sperris
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Mr. Muggle
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Thanks guys,

I keep my cage really clean, and no the perch's are not over one another. I don't give my doves bath water, instead they have a perch in the shower, and get "rained on". The perch is large enough for them to move into or out of the water on their own. They enjoy it & keeps them clean.

I clean my cage twice a week, during this time the birds are out. Sometimes in a rain shower.

I wasn't aware that the ringnecks weren't naturally white. My female has a brown/pinkish color on the outside of her wings. She isn't sickly either- atleast she hasn't given me any signs of that appearance.

I suppose that she just isn't pure white. I bought mine all together, and didn't notice the coloring in her as much when I first got her- although it was present.

MM
"Now you're looking for the secret... but you won't find it because you're not really looking. You don't really want to know the secret... You want to be fooled." - The Prestige (2006)
Dave Scribner
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Randy, you remembered about my basement aviary. I used to keep them there but the dust go too much for my wife. They now live outside but the cleaning rule still holds true. I keep them and the cages as clean as possible all the time.

MM, I like the shower perch idea. I've seen a variation of that and it works great.
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Bill Hegbli
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Dave,

I was refering to extreme people who keep the cage to clean and sterile. Some people clean the cages every day, and do not let any 'dirt' exist at all. This can become unhealthy in the long run.

Muggle,

If your doves have red eyes this is a trait of albinos.

Also, keeping birds in the basement is not the best condition either. They should have a window for sunlight and the basement checked for 'raydon'. Also some basements are not finished and can develope bugs and spiders. So regular cleaning of the basement is necessary.
Mr. Muggle
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I was going to put mine in the basement, but decided against it. Im building a garage/shed this summer and plan to have a bird/bunny house for the animals. I've been designing it for ease of maint. and cleaning, etc.

No red eyes, but thanks for the information. The help has been much appreciated. My dove tapes and books have lacked certain references.


MM
"Now you're looking for the secret... but you won't find it because you're not really looking. You don't really want to know the secret... You want to be fooled." - The Prestige (2006)
Dave Scribner
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Wm, agreed. Sterile cleaning daily is a fixation not a requirement. I'm sure if the birds need dirt but they certainly don't need a hospital environment everyday either.

MM: The real draw back to having a basement aviary is the dust. If you only have a couple of birds it isn't too bad but in my case where I 20 or more at any given time, the dust got deathly and was playing havoc with my wife's lungs. Even with a filtration system that I already had, the dust became unbearable.

I closed off one end of my basement where there was a window that let in plenty of sunshine. I just erected a simple wire wall with a door for access. They had plenty of room for excercise, perching, flying and nesting. It was easy to clean and the birds were very handy for practicing each night.

Where you keep them is really a matter of personal preference and space availability but if you follow the basic guidelines, you'll be fine.

Keep them clean, watch their diet, work with them as much as possible and above all, treat them like assistants not props. Follow these rules and noone is going to be concerned with whether your birds are pure white or pigmented.
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Mr. Muggle
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Thanks Dave, your last paragraph is very true. I'll just not worry about Ya-Ya's coloring. I will however look into getting maybe some different type of dove when I add on in the future. Before that day comes I need to do some research & have the need in my act.

Thanks to all again.

MM
"Now you're looking for the secret... but you won't find it because you're not really looking. You don't really want to know the secret... You want to be fooled." - The Prestige (2006)
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