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What do doves and pigeons eat?

Discussion in 'Poultry Row' started by Sky&Sunshine, 1/9/17.

  1. Sky&Sunshine

    Sky&Sunshine Jogging around the block

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    Out of my own curiosity, i was wondering... what do doves and pigeons eat? Do they eat the same thing? I am hoping to one day turn our big chicken run into an aviary for doves and pigeons.
     
  2. Eloy

    Eloy Biking along the boulevard Celebirdy of the Month Avenue Spotlight Award Shutterbugs' Best

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    I feed mine almost what I feed my parrots, a lot of sprouted seeds and lentils.
    This pigeon seed mix is what I sprout both for my parrots and doves. And in the winter the doves are eating hemp seed too. (they are outside)
    [​IMG]
     
  3. Sky&Sunshine

    Sky&Sunshine Jogging around the block

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    thanx! Is it cheap to buy? (i mean, i would have to buy it) And where would i buy it?
     
  4. Eloy

    Eloy Biking along the boulevard Celebirdy of the Month Avenue Spotlight Award Shutterbugs' Best

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    Yes, it's pretty cheap. But I buy a more expensive one with higher quality. Almost 100% of the seed sprout in 24 H.
    And you can sprout this seed for your budgies too, I did that when I had budgies.
     
  5. AzaleaMist

    AzaleaMist Rollerblading along the road

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    They eat seeds similar to a cockatiel mix with added lentils and more safflower, no sunflower. I've read mixed opinion on his and some say he he can eat the shelled sunflower hearts but others say they are still too risky.
    They like chopped shelled peanuts (unsalted) as a treat. They will also eat greens and veggies if encouraged to do so. They can eat pellets or they can eat chicken pellets for adult birds also.
     
  6. Pigeoneer

    Pigeoneer Checking out the neighborhood

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    Formulated seed mixes from feed stores seem to be the best bet, though they tend to come in sizes twenty pounds and over. I'm currently not well versed enough to mix my own seed mixes, though that's something I'm working on researching. Everything tends to be focused on racing pigeons when I just need a good ol' maintenance blend since my pigeons are just pets.

    You can potentially find smaller bags of proper pigeon and dove mixes at specialty bird farms, but there are also brands at Petco and Petsmart. The latter (just Petsmart's brand) I don't really like, because their mix is for wild birds so I guess that gives them license to be nasty and filled with more dust and debris than I care to give my birds. The former will have a Kaytee dove mix that I've used before with success; it's a mix of predominantly millet, milo, I think some safflower, and peas (though my ringnecks wouldn't touch the peas) and some pellets. The ingredients are a bit difficult for me to parse, since it doesn't list the seeds separately from the pellet's ingredients so it's just kind of a mess.

    As for pellets, you can get those from feed stores, as well, but make sure you watch the amount of protein. I try to aim for less than 15% for my guys, but a lot of pellets formulated specifically for pigeons get up into the low twenty ranges which is too much, I think, if you're not racing or free flying your guys. Chicken pellets are good for supplementation, I'd just be sure to watch the salt content, chickens need more salt than pigeons do. However, I've heard anecdotally that pigeons can do really well with chicken pellets added to their seed mixes.

    Sorry if a lot of that is vague and anecdotal ha, I still have plenty of learning to do! I have a few sites stored away somewhere that goes into more detail regarding the nutritional value of specific seeds and grains, and I know some folks who keep pigeons just as pets so I can ask around and see what kind of formulation they feed if you have more questions!
     
  7. AzaleaMist

    AzaleaMist Rollerblading along the road

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    I haven't found a good food supplier but I hear the company foyers or foy is a good place to get pigeon related items online. I agree everything is ether focused on racing birds or wild birds. I think the Hagen pigeon and dove mix is quite good but I mix it with some of my own mix that isn't anything fancy. I also give them pellets the parrots eat. They seem to like them. I have been told that chicken pellets are fine as long as they are low enough in protein etc and not the pellets for chicks. My doves pick out their favorite seeds ( safflower especially) and scatter the rest so it is helpful that will eat pellets.
    I have a lot to learn also but so far so good.

    I have found that my doves get really excited when they find rape seed in their bowl from the finch food. It isn't something they have been given intentionally but when they find some either in the floor or a bit gets in their food they pick them all out.
     
  8. Birdbabe

    Birdbabe Joyriding the Neighborhood Celebirdy of the Month Mayor of the Avenue Avenue Veteran

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    Mine eat cockatiel mix, no sunflower seeds, broccoli florets, scramble eggs, tiny chopped parsely, wheat bread, cornbread, millet, cuttlebone, and tiny Zupreem fruity pellets.
     
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  9. AzaleaMist

    AzaleaMist Rollerblading along the road

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    @Birdbabe I haven't tried the tiny fruity zupreem but really am intrigued by the size and think they would be perfect for the finch and doves however I'd prefer if they offered tiny natural pellets. The doves will eat cockatiel zupreem though and also mazuri's small pellets. I really wish their were more options for softbills and tiny birds. Roudybush was a hit and miss here. Some of my birds loved it and some refused it.
     

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