Wednesday, 8 April 2009

9th April - Three weeks old today!

Thurs. 9th April '09

Hope's squabs are three weeks old today - well there are 21 and 20 days old precisely. Hope seems to have settled into the pattern of leaving them at night and flying off with her new mate. The last night she stayed with them was Sunday. I take them into the kitchen and keep them overnight in a box to keep them warm if she is not with them. So far she hasn't neglected to come back and feed them in the mornings, thank goodness, but it is a constant worry.

I took their 3 week old birthday photo early this morning before I put them back in the nest.

They are much bigger than when I first took them into the kitchen overnight, last Thursday. I need to find them a bigger box to sit in, and a taller box to contain that in. This morning one of them tried to scramble out in an ungainly but determined fashion!

Their heads still retain a little yellow fluffiness, but all in all they look much more like an adult dove, with strong, quite big wings.

As you can see from the above photo, they foul the overnight box considerably. I am pleased to see this because obviously it means they are getting enough food. It also means that the nest in the dovecote is rather less dirty than it would normally be - and that is VERY dirty and disgusting indeed by the time they leave the nest at about four weeks old.I think this one is looking quite intelligent now!

I have named Hope's new mate Pascoe. I believe this is the Cornish version of Pascal, which is a name given to those born at or around Easter. It means 'suffering' though (i.e. the suffering of Christ) so I hope that's not a bad omen.

Another parent dove was feeding with Hope this morning. I could tell as it had a dirty breast - this often happens when they go in and out of the nest area. There is a white dove on a nest in the big barn on the farm so maybe it's that one.

The end.



Faith, you must be exhausted, dealing with all that anxiety on a daily basis. You are almost there, and look what you have achieved. You are brilliant, and the photos are terrific. They are certainly thriving. Well done.

Calico Kate said...

They are growing so fast Faith. Surely down to your tender care. They seem more active and like having their photos taken! Have you named them yet?

Cait O'Connor said...

You must be proud Faith and what great pics.

Fennie said...

So glad that it is all working out. Fingers crossed for a happy ending. But what are you going to call them?
I echo Cait - great pics

Jude said...

Gosh, how they've grown, what's happening now??
A chap knocked on the door yesterday with a scrap of a chick in his hand, he was wondering whether it was ours, he found it in the lane!I don't think it's going to grow into something as beautiful as your pair...

Lianne said...

Hi wow just read your blog about your doves. I live in New Zealand and am getting some fantail pigeons next week. They are actually a few years old so not sure how we will get on if we let them out of cage to free fly. Plan on keeping them in a cage with nesting space for at least 6 weeks probably longer as we are going away in July.