Ask Lafeber

Question:

June 17, 2019

How to mate your cockatiels


How do I mate them


Answer:

Hi Sara,

Cockatiels will only breed if they are bonded and this only happens if they are compatible. First, both birds must be old enough – at least 18 months old for a Male and 2 years old for a female. This is the minimum age and some birds still are not emotionally mature enough to breed at this age. When both birds are old enough, you should start with them in cages side by side, to see if they have any interest in each other. If they show interest, then you can introduce them gradually in the same cage, splitting them up again if they end up fighting. If they get along, then at this point you just have to wait. They need to be on a nutritionally complete diet – a seed only diet is not adequate for breeding or pet birds. They should also be eating fresh foods like leafy greens, veggies and fruits. Later you can offer cooked eggs and multi grain bread as they show more interest in breeding a laying eggs. You can give them a nest box if they are getting along well – it should be attached to the outside of the cage and high up – with the top even with the top of the cage. A nesting box can trigger bonding and mating, or it can cause fighting if the birds are not truly compatible. Now it is time for the real waiting – birds can take months or longer to show interest in breeding. And not all birds will be good breeders. If they do lay eggs, there are many things that may go wrong such as not sitting on the eggs, eating or breaking the eggs, not feeding, injuring or killing chicks. There are no guarantees when breeding birds so you have to be very patient. Sometimes you can do everything right and they still will not breed. All you can do is provide the best environment for them and offer the right foods and then hope for the best.

Thank you for asking Lafeber,

Brenda

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