Ask Lafeber

Question:

May 24, 2021

Laying eggs in female cockatials w/o male


Will My 2 females lay eggs without any males around?


Answer:

Hi Gabe

Yes, they will. Even a single female bird in a home will do this. However, they are  known for becoming chronic egg layers, which is not good for their health. There are some things you can do to prevent or minimize egg laying.

In the wild, they have one breeding season a year. The weather, combined with longer days, abundant food and a safe nesting place will trigger breeding. We provide this perfect breeding environment all year. You can start by limiting their light to 8-10 hours by covering their cage early each evening. Never give them anything they can use as a nest – no box, bird tents or huts, large food bowls, etc. If they sit in a dish, take it away and give them smaller food cups. If they choose a corner of the cage as a nest, hang some toys there to bock the area. When they are out of the cage, don’t let them get in dark, cozy places. Even sitting in your lap can be a trigger. If they lay eggs, leave the eggs on the cage floor. If the cage does not have a floor grate, remove all papers or bedding from the cage tray and clean the tray daily. Don’t let them roam free and explore when they are out – they need to be with you, on their cage or on a play stand. When you pet them, only pet their heads – any petting on their body will trigger their hormones. Do not let them have anything to shred like paper or cardboard. Limit their fresh foods – you can offer them in small amounts, about 3 times a week. Rearrange the toys in their cage, and move their cage to another place in the room if they show signs of nesting or laying eggs. Move their cage about once a week. If they start to lay eggs, and won’t stop after one clutch, you should take them to an avian vet for hormone treatment – there is an implant or shots. The implant seems to be the most effective. If you have to do the hormone treatment to stop them, continue the other changes, and in most cases, they do not resume egg laying.

Thank you for asking Lafeber,

Brenda

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