Ask Lafeber


October 27, 2020

Fertile finch

I’m waiting for one last fledgling to come out of the nest before removing it. This morning, while cleaning the cage, my male bred with my female. Do I wait till the fledgling comes out and remove the nest? Do I just let her lay eggs on the floor? I want her to tend to these 2 babies.


Hi Vickie,

Yes, those pesky males just want to get back to breeding. 🙂 I think the other little guy will come out in the next day or so. Watch them all carefully. If it looks like they are trying to kick out the near fledgling to lay eggs, you might have to make the little one fledge. He should be only a day or two behind the first one in development, so as long as he has feathers, he can come on out. Removing the nest at that time will hopefully be disruptive enough that the female doesn’t lay more eggs. Mating does not have to result in eggs, so keep your fingers crossed. LOL You can go ahead and place food on the cage floor so the fledglings can easily reach it if they aren’t perching yet. Spray millet is easy for them to eat, so try offering that. The parents will still feed them some and also hold back to give them the chance to eat on their own. When you are sure they are self feeding and the parents have stopped supplementing them, you can move them to another cage. Then you can give the breeding cage a good cleaning, rearrange perches and any toys, and even move the cage to another place in the room to break up the breeding cycle. If she lays eggs, I would discard them unless there is a metal floor grate. In that case she can’t get the eggs warm enough for them to ever start to grow. It takes about 2 days of incubation for the eggs to begin any development. Enjoy your little ones!

Thanks for the update,


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