You may remember that I had decided to allow two pairs of my Ringneck Doves to breed and had stopped replacing their eggs with wooden substitutes. Well, I began doing my morning chores the other day and found this surprise in one of the cardboard next boxes:
These are newly hatched baby doves, not yet one day old. I'd lifted out Mom and Dad for their morning flying session. Doves are not protective of their babies and don't mind if you pick them up. Yet they are devoted parents and both male and female set on the nest and feed the youngsters "pigeon milk:"
I didn't pick them up on the first day, though I could have. Instead, I shot a photo with my hand nearby so that you could see how tiny they were:
On day 2, the little birds were much, much larger than on the previous day:
I tried holding them both at the same time but the photos were difficult to distinguish between the two babies. So here's a picture of just one. I didn't measure, but I'd bet that they'd doubled in size in one day. Their growth rate is phenomenal. You can see why I think Ringneck Doves would be such an ideal pet for children, or at least for gentle children:
And as long as we're overdosing on cuteness today, here's a shot of 8 week old Clover bouncing around the back yard:
Papillons are an exceptional breed - intelligent, cuddly and athletic. Well, Clover is already intelligent and cuddly, but not yet athletic. She still walks like a cute little puppy and I am thoroughly enjoying it:
And speaking of bouncing around the back yard, here she is in action one windy morning. There - now you've had your morning dose of cuteness: