Ask Lafeber

Question:

March 31, 2019

Can my cockatiel get a mate and have babies?


So my cockatiel is almost about a year old now and I would love it if she could have a family of her own so she wouldn’t be lonely but the thing is she is a special needs bird she only has half of the top of her beak so I’m worried this might affect her being a good mother she can eat like a normal bird, she is kinda good at cleaning herself she just cant climb very well unless she has something like cloth or bars that aren’t long horizontally overall she can do almost anything other birds can. what do you think?


Answer:

Hi Alexis,

I would not recommend this. She is not likely going to be able to feed any chicks. Also, if you get her a mate, he may decide something is wrong with her and injure or kill her. Birds instinctively don’t want a weak or sick bird around because this can attract predators. Even pet birds have this instinct. If she is a hand tame bird and you get her a mate, you will not be able to handle her anymore. She would bond with the mate and not want human companionship. And even if she has a mate and managed to raise chicks, they can’t be a family in the sense that humans are a family. The chicks will wean in 8 weeks and then need to be removed from the cage. The parent birds don’t let the weaned chicks stick around – in the wild they push them to be independent. This helps prevent breeding between related birds. Breeding is also very hard on the female. So truly, let her be happy as she is – breeding is not something that makes a bird happier in the way you are suggesting.

Thank you for asking Lafeber,

Brenda

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