• Welcome to Avian Avenue! To view our forum with less advertisments please register with us.
    Memberships are free and it will just take a moment. Click here

Excessive egg laying

Johnny99

Meeting neighbors
Joined
3/26/22
Messages
61
Can't separate them, because finches are very social and need to be together. But when they are together and also have nests (which my chronic egg layer needs to hopefully stop laying) then they fight. Well, not they, it's always the chronic egg layer being harassed. She does not deserve her as a friend.
 

fashionfobie

Rollerblading along the road
Celebirdy of the Month
Mayor of the Avenue
Avenue Spotlight Award
Joined
1/4/19
Messages
4,940
Location
Qld, Australia
Real Name
Natalie
How many do you have living together at the moment?
 

fashionfobie

Rollerblading along the road
Celebirdy of the Month
Mayor of the Avenue
Avenue Spotlight Award
Joined
1/4/19
Messages
4,940
Location
Qld, Australia
Real Name
Natalie
Two females in a cage, and their half-blind brother in a smaller cage next to them.
I house two zebras (male) together and they have had bully moments between each other too. For me it worked to radically change their perches. One tended to get a possessive about this one particular knot in the branch. When I replaced the branch this point of conflict was gone. They haven't had squabbles like that in a few years now. Another possible option (pending the size of your aviary) is getting a few more hens so they have some comrades and aren't just focused on one another. For zebras it is suggested a pair or 6+. [For forum clarity: you don't want 3, 4 or 5; you want 2 or 6+]. So if you have the room you could adopt 4 more females and after a quarantine period introduce them to the hens.
 

Johnny99

Meeting neighbors
Joined
3/26/22
Messages
61
I house two zebras (male) together and they have had bully moments between each other too. For me it worked to radically change their perches. One tended to get a possessive about this one particular knot in the branch. When I replaced the branch this point of conflict was gone. They haven't had squabbles like that in a few years now. Another possible option (pending the size of your aviary) is getting a few more hens so they have some comrades and aren't just focused on one another. For zebras it is suggested a pair or 6+. [For forum clarity: you don't want 3, 4 or 5; you want 2 or 6+]. So if you have the room you could adopt 4 more females and after a quarantine period introduce them to the hens.
I'll try to rearrange their perches, since the cage is not big enough for 6 or more. Thanks for the advice.
 

Johnny99

Meeting neighbors
Joined
3/26/22
Messages
61
I house two zebras (male) together and they have had bully moments between each other too. For me it worked to radically change their perches. One tended to get a possessive about this one particular knot in the branch. When I replaced the branch this point of conflict was gone. They haven't had squabbles like that in a few years now. Another possible option (pending the size of your aviary) is getting a few more hens so they have some comrades and aren't just focused on one another. For zebras it is suggested a pair or 6+. [For forum clarity: you don't want 3, 4 or 5; you want 2 or 6+]. So if you have the room you could adopt 4 more females and after a quarantine period introduce them to the hens.
She's chasing her again... CONSTANTLY. If I take away their nests, then things return to normal after a while. There is just no way for them to be in the same cage, with nests, and not fight.
 

Screech

Jogging around the block
Joined
6/13/21
Messages
697
Location
New Zealand
Does you cage happen to have a divider, or maybe you have a spare cage lying around? Perhaps you could separate them physically, but put them right next to each other so they can still see and hear each other so they don't get lonely.
Are the nests close together? Mine will also fight if other birds are too close to their 'nests', which can happen accidentally if the nests are placed side by side.
 

Johnny99

Meeting neighbors
Joined
3/26/22
Messages
61
Does you cage happen to have a divider, or maybe you have a spare cage lying around? Perhaps you could separate them physically, but put them right next to each other so they can still see and hear each other so they don't get lonely.
Are the nests close together? Mine will also fight if other birds are too close to their 'nests', which can happen accidentally if the nests are placed side by side.
I do have a spare cage, but it's a bit small.
 

fashionfobie

Rollerblading along the road
Celebirdy of the Month
Mayor of the Avenue
Avenue Spotlight Award
Joined
1/4/19
Messages
4,940
Location
Qld, Australia
Real Name
Natalie
If they are preventing one another from eating, you may need to seperate them.

How many feeding ports do you have? Are the feeding ports separated?
 

Johnny99

Meeting neighbors
Joined
3/26/22
Messages
61
If they are preventing one another from eating, you may need to seperate them.

How many feeding ports do you have? Are the feeding ports separated?
They're not necessarily preventing one another from eating, it's just that about 50% of the time, one (always the same one) chases the other. They have 3 feeding ports and a LOT of millet sprays hanging around in the cage. I could try to put more feeders into the cage but I'm not sure if it's gonna be helpful. At times they get along fine, even to the point of sitting in the same nest at the same time, and at other times one is getting chased around the cage like mad.
 

fashionfobie

Rollerblading along the road
Celebirdy of the Month
Mayor of the Avenue
Avenue Spotlight Award
Joined
1/4/19
Messages
4,940
Location
Qld, Australia
Real Name
Natalie
3 ports should be enough. I usually suggest one more port than the number of birds.

It is natural for zebras to have a few squabbles and a little bickering. The concern is you saying how it is unending. If they are stressing each other out that can increase the risk for illness. This is especially true if one bird is getting bullied more over the other.

I would say my two boys squabble at least once a day... usually over a disagreement about leaf placement. (Peppy moves a leaf, Zippy rejects the leaf, etc) But they normally resolve this dispute quickly. They are chummy the rest of the time, preening each other, eating seeds and bathing.

If your girls are having long sustained fights it may be best to either seperate them or consider a larger aviary and increasing your flock size.
 

Johnny99

Meeting neighbors
Joined
3/26/22
Messages
61
3 ports should be enough. I usually suggest one more port than the number of birds.

It is natural for zebras to have a few squabbles and a little bickering. The concern is you saying how it is unending. If they are stressing each other out that can increase the risk for illness. This is especially true if one bird is getting bullied more over the other.

I would say my two boys squabble at least once a day... usually over a disagreement about leaf placement. (Peppy moves a leaf, Zippy rejects the leaf, etc) But they normally resolve this dispute quickly. They are chummy the rest of the time, preening each other, eating seeds and bathing.

If your girls are having long sustained fights it may be best to either seperate them or consider a larger aviary and increasing your flock size.
Should I separate them permanently, or temporarily, so that the bullied female can sit on the eggs for a while in the hope that it would make her stop laying eggs? She had a pause (6 days) but now she's back to laying eggs...
 

fashionfobie

Rollerblading along the road
Celebirdy of the Month
Mayor of the Avenue
Avenue Spotlight Award
Joined
1/4/19
Messages
4,940
Location
Qld, Australia
Real Name
Natalie
Should I separate them permanently, or temporarily, so that the bullied female can sit on the eggs for a while in the hope that it would make her stop laying eggs? She had a pause (6 days) but now she's back to laying eggs...
In my opinion if you seperate them it could be temporary. However you should reintroduce them into a radical different cage layout.

It may be very hard to ever get her to fully stop laying. Make sure she always has access to water soluble calcium (such as shell grit).
 

Johnny99

Meeting neighbors
Joined
3/26/22
Messages
61
In my opinion if you seperate them it could be temporary. However you should reintroduce them into a radical different cage layout.

It may be very hard to ever get her to fully stop laying. Make sure she always has access to water soluble calcium (such as shell grit).
How long should I let them have the nests?
 

fashionfobie

Rollerblading along the road
Celebirdy of the Month
Mayor of the Avenue
Avenue Spotlight Award
Joined
1/4/19
Messages
4,940
Location
Qld, Australia
Real Name
Natalie
How long should I let them have the nests?
I have to say I'm not sure. Zebra finches can breed year round in captivity. You can try removing them again, try rearranging the cage at the same time. Best outcome is they stop laying for awhile, worst outcome they start laying somewhere again. You know your birds better than us, and your little ones have been very determined. If I were in your shoes I may try removing the nests again, but I would also remove any and everything nest like in a hope to curb laying. I would continue to offer water soluble calcium grit.

Zebra finches are from the hostile and difficult climate of the Australian Outback. In the wild they lay based in the environmental conditions, as soon as there is enough food and water. This is why it is harder to regulate zebras in captivity, because in the paradise of our homes there is plenty of food and water all the time. It will always be a balancing act because we will always take the best of care of our little ones.
 

Wally&Eva

Jogging around the block
Joined
6/29/22
Messages
710
Location
New York
Real Name
Carol
at other times one is getting chased around the cage like mad.
I have lovebirds so can’t speak to finches but when Wally was chasing Eva it was similar to what others said. He liked his spot and used to share it but started to want his own space and would chase Eva off. I put the two cages together with the door clamped open. They were good for 2+weeks existing in the single cage together, then Wally decided today that it was only acceptable for him to be on his boing today. So I opened up the other cage. I just go by their mood and try to assess how they are feeling towards each other. Before I left, Eva was relaxing in one, Wally was the king of his boing in the other. When I get back, they are always on top of each other again. It’s like people, sometimes you just want things for yourself haha just to know you have them before you are like…heyyy friend…whatchaaaa doinggg? Wanna cuddle?
 

Johnny99

Meeting neighbors
Joined
3/26/22
Messages
61
I have to say I'm not sure. Zebra finches can breed year round in captivity. You can try removing them again, try rearranging the cage at the same time. Best outcome is they stop laying for awhile, worst outcome they start laying somewhere again. You know your birds better than us, and your little ones have been very determined. If I were in your shoes I may try removing the nests again, but I would also remove any and everything nest like in a hope to curb laying. I would continue to offer water soluble calcium grit.

Zebra finches are from the hostile and difficult climate of the Australian Outback. In the wild they lay based in the environmental conditions, as soon as there is enough food and water. This is why it is harder to regulate zebras in captivity, because in the paradise of our homes there is plenty of food and water all the time. It will always be a balancing act because we will always take the best of care of our little ones.
I put the nests away a day after you wrote this comment, and there have been no eggs since then until yesterday. Way I see it, I could either separate them and give her a nest with eggs (since this wouldn't work long-term if they were in the same cage together because of the other female's aggressiveness) or let them stay together in one cage, and in both scenarios I would make sure she has enough cuttlebones, oyster shells and calcium in her water feeder. I've lost two zebra finches to egg related issues earlier this year... I don't know what to do.
 

fashionfobie

Rollerblading along the road
Celebirdy of the Month
Mayor of the Avenue
Avenue Spotlight Award
Joined
1/4/19
Messages
4,940
Location
Qld, Australia
Real Name
Natalie
I've lost two zebra finches to egg related issues earlier this year... I don't know what to do.
I am sorry for you loss.

I can only imagine how stressful this is for you. I have more or less exhausted all the ideas I have. I think the best you can do it to keep testing options, maybe frequent rearrangements are the best thing for your girls. Maybe more foraging toys (ex difficult to excess red millet springs) and smaller but more abundant feed stations would help. If they need to spend more time navigating for feed they may have less time to nest.
 
Top