It’s time once again for baby birds to be abound!
Different species have different nesting preferences, incubation periods, and even how they raise their hatchlings. Pigeons and doves often build poorly constructed nests made out of materials such as small twigs, feathers, and dried grasses.
The hen lays 2 white eggs 8-12 days after mating (variable). After approximately an 18-day incubation period with the cock and hen taking turns sitting on the nest, baby pigeons, also known as squabs or hatchlings, emerge from the egg. Pigeons are altricial when hatched, meaning they are born practically naked (covered in sparse yellow down), blind, and completely rely upon parental care for the first few weeks of life. Compare this to precocial birds, such as chicks.
Both parents take turns caring for the squabs right up until they are ready to fly the coop, usually a month (25-32 days) after hatching. Pigeons secrete a substance known as crop milk to feed their young.
Baby birds often require specialized care that may differ by species. If you find a baby bird and do not know what to do, please refer to the following articles: