Ask Lafeber

Question:

May 31, 2019

Quaker laying eggs


My 12 year old Quaker, Penny, has laid 4 eggs in the last month. I have heard this not good for her. How do I get her to stop or what do I do to suppliment her diet. or should I just stop worrying. She is covered at night in a dark room, she doesn’t seem interested in nesting, the eggs are not fertile.


Answer:

Hi Rebecca,

Are you letting her keep the eggs as she lays them? Quakers will lay 4-5 eggs as a clutch. So she might be done. Generally we suggest letting the hen keep the eggs and then she will usually lose interest when the eggs do not hatch. It is important that you do not give her anything to nest in as this can encourage more egg laying.

Hopefully this is just seasonal and she won’t lay more eggs right now. It only becomes a health risk when they keep laying eggs all year. Cockatiels are the most notorious chronic egg layers. As far as discouraging it, the dark sleeping area is good – limit her daylight to 8-10 hours. Longer days and warmer weather can trigger egg laying. If you feed a lot of fresh foods, this can also be a trigger. It sounds weird, but you should cut back on these foods when she shows signs of laying eggs. When you handle her, make sure you limit petting to head scratches – any petting on her body is something only a mate is allowed to do, thus another trigger. You can also move her cage around about once a week and rearrange things in the cage to disrupt her routine.

Again, with any luck she has this out of her system for now. I wouldn’t worry about it unless she keep laying eggs.

Thank you for asking Lafeber,

Brenda

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