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The Magic Cafe Forum Index » » Polly wants a cracker... » » Nest problems (0 Likes) Printer Friendly Version

Rupert Bair
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Hi,
I have done what ( I think!) Dave told me about putting a pie dish in the bottom of the cage for my breeding pair for the eggs, I put some hay in it and when I checked the nest they had moved all the hay out just left the hay and the dish and have layed a egg on the floor! Should I just let them build it themselves?
Thanks
Matt
Dave Scribner
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Lake Hopatcong, NJ
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Doves are terrible nest builders. I don't remember suggesting a pie pan but that could be dangerous. The baby doves need to keep their legs under them initially so they grow straight. If they can stretch out, they could grow deformed. I use a small bowl called a coop cup and fill it with nesting material. Nesting material is softer than hay. It may be that your birds didn't like the coarseness of the hay.

If they layed the egg on the floor, they will not pick it up and put it in a nest. It's possible, but I've never had an egg hatch that was layed on the floor. It won't have enough warmth to keep it alive.
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Bob Sanders
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Magic Valley Ranch, Clanton, Alabama
20493 Posts

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Matt,

Have your birds been moved a very short distance? A dove's GPS is pretty good except for altitude. (You can move them up and down and keep them on their nest. But you cannot move them laterally. They will just move the nest. It is better to move them several feet and to where they cannot get back than to move them a few inches and keep the old space available to them.)

It is perfectly natural for doves to make a nest on the ground. Some parts of the earth don't give them a choice. There are no trees near food and water. And, just like Dave said, they could never win a prize for building great nests.

In a cage, if they pick a place for the nest, the best stratgy is to move the nest there. They will usually allow you to move the nest to their picked spot and put the eggs in it. (I have friends who put sand in the nest instead of straw. It makes the bowl harder to turn over because of the added weight. I use pine straw because I can't get rid of all the pine needles that I have available.) For some reason, doves seem to assume eggs several inches away must belong to some other bird. They just seldom claim them.

I have never had a successful nest on my cage floors (except the walk-in cages with solid floors). The smaller cage floors are wire. But I have had plenty of successful nests that were not much more than a piece of poster board between the wire and the eggs and doves. I try to get my doves to nest in hanging wooden baskets or in 6" pottery saucers. (I take what I can get!) My cure is usually to move them to a different cage and start them over.

Yes, they fired you. Let them build a nest for themselves. About all those two want from you is building materials. (Even after they finish, you may be able to put something under it. But don't move it laterally.)

Young birds frequently fail a time or two before getting it right. It's not your fault.

Good Luck!

Bob
Magic By Sander
Bob Sanders

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Rupert Bair
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Thanks, I'm sure you said to use a pie dish as a nest perhaps somebody else said it. It's more like a bowl that I put the hay in. The doves have only recently gone into cages so they have only laid I suppose tester eggs. I might build a nest box to see if that works. By the way I got Tony Clark one and two and the art of stealing..doves of corse.
matt
Bob Sanders
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Grammar Supervisor
Magic Valley Ranch, Clanton, Alabama
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Matt,

I've never used a pie plate as a nest. I don't know why a glass one would not work. I do use pie plates with sand and water (separately) as a treat for the doves to bathe and play in the sand. They love it. But if you left them in the cages all the time the clean up job would simply be too much.

Enjoy your Tony Clark stuff and the doves.

Bob
Magic By Sander
Bob Sanders

Magic By Sander / The Amazed Wiz

AmazedWiz@Yahoo.com http://www.magicbysander.com/
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