Ask Lafeber

Question:

May 31, 2022

Zebra finch


Hi. I have a pair of zebra finches. They 3 chicks. The first one came out today.I noticed that the male bird was plucking feathers of the female bird. Then I gave him a lot of nesting material. But now I noticed that the male bird is also pluking feathers of the chick that came out and making nest. They are feeding the chicks but why are they taking feathers from them? what can I do now? If I remove the male from the cage then will the female stop feeding the chicks? Please help me.


Answer:

Hi,

If the chicks have left the nest, then go ahead and remove the nest and all of the nesting material. The male is picking on the female because he wants to mate again. He wants the chicks to go away so she will breed again. But it is too soon to allow them to breed again. The chicks must be weaned first, and then the female needs to rest for 4-6 months before letting her lay eggs again. As soon as the chicks are eating on their own, remove them from the cage – do not give them a nest. If the male continues to try to mate with the female, or picks on her, then separate them for 4-6 months until it is time to let them breed again. If he gets too aggressive with the female and the chicks, you can try removing him now, and watch to make sure the female is feeding the chicks. If you do not remove the nest, and she lays eggs again before weaning the chicks, they will most likely stop feeding the chicks and let them die while they care for new eggs.

Thank you for asking Lafeber,

Brenda

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