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First-Time Diamond Dove / Bird owner, need help!

Blossominu

Checking out the neighborhood
Joined
4/27/20
Messages
2
Real Name
Bryn
Hello all! I'm pretty new to the bird scene, and I've read that Diamond Doves are excellent first birds. I love doves and pigeons already, and to have almost a miniature version of those makes me very excited. They are similiar to finches in a lot of ways, so I thought I would ask here.

I'm ordering a male/female pair of Diamond Doves from Stromberg's Hatchery since it is the only place where they sex their doves, and also appear to have a better customer service from my experience, than both Petsmart and The Finch Farm. If any of you have experience with orders from there I would be happy to hear that, too.

I live in the midwest. I'm building a 8'x12' outdoor aviary that is mostly blocked against the elements, being right beside our house, but still gets trace amount of sunlight (I will provide a yellow heat lamp as supplement in the winter as well). The actual enclosure will be 8'x10' (the 2ft will include a double door system for safety and a food storage area) with a slanted roof that descends from 8ft to 6ft.

I hope that helps explain a few things. I'll leave numbered questions down below so it's easier to keep track of everything. I would also love to hear about your personal experience with these animals if you would like to share!

1. What mix of seeds/pellets is recommended for feeding? How much per day (i.e., TBS per bird or 1/4 cup total, since they are outdoor)? What greens should I supplement them with? Will they eat dried mealworms and millet spray as a treat?

Kaytee has an individual mix for doves, finches, and canaries. However, the Kaytee dove mix apparently has some seeds that are too big for diamond doves. Since doves are persistent and swallow seeds whole, would it be worth it to purchase anyway, or buy their finch seed mix and combine it with pellets? Or just a straight seed mix with extra black oil sunflower seeds?

2. What are some bird-friendly plants? Is oat grass (commonly used for cat grass boxes) safe for them to eat/walk on? What about blueberry bushes and the foliage?

While most of the foliage in my aviary will be faux plants, preferably one or two large plants in pots and bushy garland for cover, I would like to include a few real plants as well to improve their health and enrichment. They will be potted with a stone pebble cover above the pot's soil, minus the 'cat grass.'

3. Do I need to sterilize outside tree branches or take off the bark before putting them in the enclosure?

I would say that, roughly, 80% of the perches will be real tree branches from a cut oak tree on our property. They are fairly tall, with many different sized branches, and do not appear to be infested or moldy. We do not treat our trees. I have already picked out the branches and they are sitting out in the sun. Would it be worth it to carve off the bark? Most of the small bits and branches would fall off, so I was leaning towards just sanding down rough edges only and wiping down the branches with a mild white vinegar and water solution.

4. When should I take my birds for a vet check-up? How frequently? Once a year, or whenever something is amiss (they appear to be pretty hardy)?

Since they will be shipped through the post office, I feel that they will be stressed for a longer period. If I take them soon after recieving them, it may be dangerous for their health. When would be a good time for a check up?

5. What should I do with unwanted fertilized eggs?


I was considering eventually hatching a couple of birds out in the next year or two, however I heard they produce frequently. When the female lays eggs, should I replace them with two dummy eggs (I have about three small rounded stones I can use) and throw the real ones in the garbage; is there a better way to get rid of them?

6. Is it a bad idea to introduce birds much later (2-4 years) into the enclosure? Will this affect territory spaces and increase stress or will they adjust?

While I'm only ordering two currently, I am sure my eventual flock will consist of two or three more pairs. I hope to keep a few of the original pairs offspring and purchase a new bird of the opposite gender to hopefully make a breeding pair. However, this appears to be at least a minimum of a year down the line. Even if I add extra nests and feeding areas, would it be too stressful on my pair to have new birds enter their enclosure when they're so used to it already?

Thanks for all the help!! Sorry this is so long.
 

Zara

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Welcome to the Avenue Bryn! :starshower1:
 

sunnysmom

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Welcome. I'm afraid I don't know a lot about doves. Hopefully others can answer. :)

@Birdbabe ?
 

Birdbabe

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Hi, take your babies first off for wellness check.Since your shipping,,but do give them a few days to " destress" from they're ordeal.
They will probably be ok on a finch, canary , cockatiel mix seed,,please buy good stuff like " Volkmans" not Walmart or dollar store junk. Maybe even they would eat Zupreem fruit pellets,,the tiny ones. Bird friendly plants,,oat or wheat grass, broccoli, these things they can also eat..
The wood your talking about sounds fine, since you dont use pesticides.
As for eggs. You planning on breeding? If not, then take the eggs and replace them, if you check the eggs and they're not viable, then just let them sit until they become bored, or give up.
I'm hoping others with doves will see this and chime in..
 

Blossominu

Checking out the neighborhood
Joined
4/27/20
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2
Real Name
Bryn
Welcome to the Avenue Bryn! :starshower1:
Welcome. I'm afraid I don't know a lot about doves. Hopefully others can answer. :)

@Birdbabe ?
Thanks guys! I'm happy to get to know you all!!

Hi, take your babies first off for wellness check.Since your shipping,,but do give them a few days to " destress" from they're ordeal.
They will probably be ok on a finch, canary , cockatiel mix seed,,please buy good stuff like " Volkmans" not Walmart or dollar store junk. Maybe even they would eat Zupreem fruit pellets,,the tiny ones. Bird friendly plants,,oat or wheat grass, broccoli, these things they can also eat..
The wood your talking about sounds fine, since you dont use pesticides.
As for eggs. You planning on breeding? If not, then take the eggs and replace them, if you check the eggs and they're not viable, then just let them sit until they become bored, or give up.
I'm hoping others with doves will see this and chime in..
Hey there, thanks for the reply!!

My local vet's office is unfortunately closed for check-ups due to the virus situation, however by the time I order my birds they should be open; if not, that just means a little extra time to destress, haha. That definitely helps, though! Just gotta save up for the vet costs as well.

Good to know about the seed. I'm considering ordering a finch mix, a finch and canary mix, extra black oil sunflower seeds, pre-mixed small bird egg supplement food, and mealworms (for an ocassional treat / bit of protein). I've heard it's good to mix different portions of seeds, vitamins, and fresh food daily. I'll also probably be giving them things like small berries (blueberries, blackberries, cut strawberries, etc.) as well as apples and a few different types of lettuce, perhaps broccoli. We usually have these things on hand, so they could be near daily. I was considering bean sprouts and peas as well. Would you recommend pellets on this diet too or do you think they would be okay with the mix of vitamins/proteins/carbs/fats already?

I'll use that wood then, sounds good! For the eggs, I plan to breed them perhaps a couple of times (my aviary turned out to be bigger than I had envisioned haha) and keep at least one. But that won't happen immediately, so I'll use my dummy eggs for the female then.

I really appreciate all your help! :D Thanks again!!
 

12345678910112

Strolling the yard
Joined
4/19/19
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109
Real Name
Suhaimah
I also give my doves finch seed mix they are very very picky (at least mine are) and barely touch anything new or different so it's kind of hard to feed them but my diamonds love crushed chicken egg shells you should try (great for making friends). For me the only soft food they eat is mint, coriander and cabbage. Sadly they have never tried the cut strawberries or other fruits I've given them but you should try anyway because if they do that's great. I end up adding nutrients in their water to make up for there bad diet. I also have rock salt in their cage since their beaks aren't that hard I bang the salt rock on the marble floor so that there's salt bits for them to pick up from. They are very territorial and can get aggressive so I suppose it would be bad introducing new birds later on. But ironically the newer birds I have were the ones being aggressive towards my old birds and I had to separate them into different cages because they were fighting too much.Don't be fooled with the myth I believed when I got doves they are NOT peaceful adorable but NOT peaceful. Originally I wanted them to get along so they could all share the bigger enclosure and the new doves bloodied up my older birds to the point the rings around their eyes were swollen. And it's not like the older doves are that older anyway. They do get along outside the cage but are very territorial. Parents also get aggressive towards their offspring when they get older but luckily for me it's not so extreme that I need to get separate cages for them.
 

JennHowse

Checking out the neighborhood
Joined
7/29/20
Messages
3
Real Name
Jenn
Hello! I am wondering if you got your diamond doves yet. I am going to be getting 2 in the next few days and am starting to panic a little bit that I can't find a lot of information on them. What do you use on the floor of your cage? What are you feeding them? Do you put toys in their cage? I would love any information you could provide.

Hello all! I'm pretty new to the bird scene, and I've read that Diamond Doves are excellent first birds. I love doves and pigeons already, and to have almost a miniature version of those makes me very excited. They are similiar to finches in a lot of ways, so I thought I would ask here.

I'm ordering a male/female pair of Diamond Doves from Stromberg's Hatchery since it is the only place where they sex their doves, and also appear to have a better customer service from my experience, than both Petsmart and The Finch Farm. If any of you have experience with orders from there I would be happy to hear that, too.

I live in the midwest. I'm building a 8'x12' outdoor aviary that is mostly blocked against the elements, being right beside our house, but still gets trace amount of sunlight (I will provide a yellow heat lamp as supplement in the winter as well). The actual enclosure will be 8'x10' (the 2ft will include a double door system for safety and a food storage area) with a slanted roof that descends from 8ft to 6ft.

I hope that helps explain a few things. I'll leave numbered questions down below so it's easier to keep track of everything. I would also love to hear about your personal experience with these animals if you would like to share!

1. What mix of seeds/pellets is recommended for feeding? How much per day (i.e., TBS per bird or 1/4 cup total, since they are outdoor)? What greens should I supplement them with? Will they eat dried mealworms and millet spray as a treat?

Kaytee has an individual mix for doves, finches, and canaries. However, the Kaytee dove mix apparently has some seeds that are too big for diamond doves. Since doves are persistent and swallow seeds whole, would it be worth it to purchase anyway, or buy their finch seed mix and combine it with pellets? Or just a straight seed mix with extra black oil sunflower seeds?

2. What are some bird-friendly plants? Is oat grass (commonly used for cat grass boxes) safe for them to eat/walk on? What about blueberry bushes and the foliage?

While most of the foliage in my aviary will be faux plants, preferably one or two large plants in pots and bushy garland for cover, I would like to include a few real plants as well to improve their health and enrichment. They will be potted with a stone pebble cover above the pot's soil, minus the 'cat grass.'

3. Do I need to sterilize outside tree branches or take off the bark before putting them in the enclosure?

I would say that, roughly, 80% of the perches will be real tree branches from a cut oak tree on our property. They are fairly tall, with many different sized branches, and do not appear to be infested or moldy. We do not treat our trees. I have already picked out the branches and they are sitting out in the sun. Would it be worth it to carve off the bark? Most of the small bits and branches would fall off, so I was leaning towards just sanding down rough edges only and wiping down the branches with a mild white vinegar and water solution.

4. When should I take my birds for a vet check-up? How frequently? Once a year, or whenever something is amiss (they appear to be pretty hardy)?

Since they will be shipped through the post office, I feel that they will be stressed for a longer period. If I take them soon after recieving them, it may be dangerous for their health. When would be a good time for a check up?

5. What should I do with unwanted fertilized eggs?

I was considering eventually hatching a couple of birds out in the next year or two, however I heard they produce frequently. When the female lays eggs, should I replace them with two dummy eggs (I have about three small rounded stones I can use) and throw the real ones in the garbage; is there a better way to get rid of them?

6. Is it a bad idea to introduce birds much later (2-4 years) into the enclosure? Will this affect territory spaces and increase stress or will they adjust?

While I'm only ordering two currently, I am sure my eventual flock will consist of two or three more pairs. I hope to keep a few of the original pairs offspring and purchase a new bird of the opposite gender to hopefully make a breeding pair. However, this appears to be at least a minimum of a year down the line. Even if I add extra nests and feeding areas, would it be too stressful on my pair to have new birds enter their enclosure when they're so used to it already?

Thanks for all the help!! Sorry this is so long.
 
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