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The Magic Cafe Forum Index » » Polly wants a cracker... » » Using Doves that breed? (0 Likes) Printer Friendly Version

Jeff Jenson
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Denver, Colorado
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Someone told me that I should not use the Doves I'm breeding in the act, when I asked him why he never answered me. What if that's the only Doves I have? If I do use them in the act how can you tell if a female is about to lay an egg so the audience doesn't get a little gift?

Jeff
Jeff Jenson
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Bob Sanders
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Magic Valley Ranch, Clanton, Alabama
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Jeff,

Female doves do lay eggs. However, most magicians just throw them away and don't allow the pair to set. If they were chicken eggs you could sell them. Don't worry about bombing the audience with a dove egg. Odds are just too slim to consider. In over forty years of professional magic I've never even heard a good folk tale about it.

Bob
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RJE
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Inner circle
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When my females are going to lay an egg you notice that their feathers are slightly ruffled as opposed to their regular smooth look. Also, their eyes are slightly closed. This usually means there will be an egg at the end of the day.

I've also never had a dove actually lay an egg during a performance. On the other hand, they do tend to leave other gifts as a fairly regular occurence. As Bob mentioned, keep the egg, it may or may not hatch, or discard it.
Jeff Jenson
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Denver, Colorado
319 Posts

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Thanks, but is it good idea to use a breeding pair in your act?
Jeff Jenson
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Nick Wait
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Lichfield, UK
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I see no reason not too.
Just my 2 cents.
Nick
Andrew
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Jeff,

In my act, I'm more concerned that I'll "lay an egg" rather than one of my birds!

Seriously...I have a mating pair that have consistantly produced youngsters and I have since not included them in my show. I have the advantage of having 9 doves however, so it is not an issue.
Last year, one of my female doves laid an egg in my 'Balloon to Dove' prop while awaiting her turn to make an appearance. I suppose she was bored and needed to pass the time productively. Either way, everyting went off fine and she did not seem to have any problems after the production. (Of the egg or herself!)

Andrew
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Mr. Muggle
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I have a female who constantly is laying eggs, and for what ever reason she has become more "timid" than she once was. Although I still use her in my act, I don't use her as much as I would like to, and she no longer flies. If you do have a breeding pair, you may find that your dove(s) will be "out of service" for some time after the chick is hatched, and able to care for itself on its own.

I wouldn't pull the mother away while she is nesting a chick, in my experience the dove just doesn't act the same way and you risk the chick becoming abandoned. The second chick that my mated pair of doves had was pushed out of the nest when I was training my female how to do a 'return flight'.

While I’m not sure, I suspect that it was because of having the mother separated from the chick for what ever reason. I haven’t found allot of information in dove books that was educational for myself as a magician. (And out of all the dove material that I have, not much is mentioned outside of feeding and watering your doves regarding problems with care, training, breeding, and performance).

If I’m wrong or off base, please, someone give me a nudge in the right direction with any help that you can offer.

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)
Dakota Rose
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The doves I use are breeding pairs. If I know that I am going to do a show soon, I remove the eggs after they lay them. On one occasion, I unexpectly went to Las Vegas. There were 2 babies about 1 week old. I just packed the nest and the birds and prayed the babies would be OK. They did great. The babies went backstage and as soon as my performance was over, I put Mama and Papa back in the cage. They traveled on the plane fine and spent 11 days in Vegas. Maybe, I just got lucky that time.

Dakota Rose
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wally
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I bought a pair of doves last year, they lay every few weeks but nothing happens. I was told that they are a pair. I leave the 2 eggs for about 3 week, but still nothing.
Dave Scribner
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Lake Hopatcong, NJ
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Wally, you may have two females although usually if that's the case, you'll see 3 or 4 eggs instead of just 2. The usual hatching time is about 21 days although I've had eggs stay for up to 26 days before hatching. Next time they lay, leave the eggs longer and see what happens. It may also be that they are too young to breed even though they lay eggs. What color are their feet? Pink, red or dark red.
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Sam Tabar
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Austin, Texas
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Hey Dave,

I'm just curious. What's with the color of the feet?
"Knowledge comes from finding the answers, but understanding what the answers mean is what brings wisdom." - Anonymous
Dave Scribner
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Lake Hopatcong, NJ
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Brian, baby doves have very pink almost translucent feet and legs. As they grow older, the color changes to a deeper red and then a very dark red. When you purchase doves, that's a good area to look at to determine if you're getting younger or older birds.

In my experience, birds with very light colored feet will lay eggs but they will not be fertile.
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Sam Tabar
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Austin, Texas
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I see. Thanks for the reply!
"Knowledge comes from finding the answers, but understanding what the answers mean is what brings wisdom." - Anonymous
magicmanila
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Washington DC
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My two cents

although its really hard to tell if a bird is about to lay an egg or not, ive heard other magician friends tell me of their birds dying because of the eggs breaking while still inside the bird.
PERFORM MAGIC AND NOT "PUZZLES" so the audience wont try to "figure out how its done".

KEEP THE MAGIC ALIVE!!!
Dave Scribner
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Assistant Manager
Lake Hopatcong, NJ
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This is true. A broken egg inside a dove is dangerous. That's why it's always adviseable to check the birds frequently for egg signs and not use them during that time.

If you watch your birds closely, you'll see definite patterns when they are carrying or about to lay an egg. This is a valuable observation in caring for your assistants.
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