Ask Lafeber


January 19, 2023

Can I pull a chick in day 1

My albino cockatiel is pregnant, she hasn’t laid any eggs yet but I’m afraid that the parnts kill the little chicks. I want to buy a brooder to hand feed the chicks can I do that?



Birds do not get pregnant. They lay eggs and generally there is no indication by looking at the hen that she is about to lay. One egg at a time is formed and laid. The process for each egg takes 48 hours. Mating does not have to result in eggs.

If she does lay eggs and they hatch, the chicks have a much better chance with the parents than being hand fed. When a cockatiel chick is hand fed from day one, it almost always dies, even with the most experienced person. They need to be fed by the parents for the first 3 weeks. Yes, sometimes the parents make mistakes and the chicks don’t survive. I understand this is upsetting, but if you breed birds you have to be able to handle losses. Sometimes chicks die, and sometimes you lose a parent. So I do not recommend taking the chicks from the beginning.

Thank you for asking Lafeber,


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