Friday, June 25, 2010

Baby Dove Update Number 4

These babies are from nest #2, and were hatched one day apart. They are 6 and 7 days old in this photo:

The smaller, 6 day old baby is (thankfully) no longer naked and is now growing some feathers, all of them apparently white. He also has red eyes which is common to white doves. Most white doves with red eyes are not albinos according to everything I've read, but this baby seems different. Perhaps he (or she) is a true albino. He's also growing more slowly than the other babies:

Here's the little fellow with his red eyes. He is growing, but less rapidly than the other three babies:

Here's a comparison shot of babies from both nests. From top to bottom, they are 9, 7 and 6 days old:

And here's one of the 9 day old babies from nest #1. Both babies are clearly going to be pieds, though the pattern and exact color is not yet clear at this point:

This is nest #1, with two 9 day old babies. You can see that doves are not among the animals of the world which do not poop in their nests. In fact, they poop in it so much that I wonder if it holds some evolutionary value. Perhaps it helps keep the babies warm or repels lice(?):

It appears that though both babies in nest #1 will be pieds, they will have different colors for the darker patches. I'll keep you updated as they grow and mature. It is impossible to tell their gender at this age and, in fact, can be difficult even with adults:

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