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Moving Eggs to other Nest

Kalik

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Hello Everyone,

While I have been reading this forum for various articles and answers for last 6 months, it's my first post here, as I am really confused on what to do.

I bought 3 budgies from the same pet shop in May 2020. The pet shop owner mentioned that all 3 are females and are of around 5-6 months old. Since this is the first time I ever had any kind of birds, hence I mostly relied on his information. However, based on the cap feathers all 3 of them were definitely more than 4 months old. All 3 of them had the cere in different shades of brown and we assumed all 3 of them to be females.

Around two weeks back, I bought two coconut shaped coir nest. I wasn't aware that budgies need nest only for breeding and I bought it more as a toy. soon after we bought it, one of the birds - Paulie went crazy and would spend entire day in plucking the nest for next 4-5 days. This nest is very small in my opinion. I have attached the image for the same.

On 17th Jan, we saw one broken egg on the floor of the cage. By looking at it's condition it may have been laid while sitting on a perch. We were completely surprised. But after few articles on internet, we assumed that it must be an infertile egg and realized that getting the nest was a bad idea. We thought to remove it after few days. 19th Jan - next egg - again broken on the floor of the cage in exact same manner. That's when we realized that two of the birds are actually male and have blue cere. (The birds are not yet tamed - they are not really scared of me but not tamed either). 21st Jan - Paulie laid egg in the nest and started sitting on it. We never planned for breeding but now since she has laid egg, we dont want to throw it out. I ordered for a proper nest box from Amazon which I got today. 24th Jan - She laid one more egg in the nest.

TLDR Vesrion:

My worry is that the current nest may be too small for breeding purpose. I dont know if I should move her eggs in the new nest box or not? If yes, then how should I move it? Whether she will move to new nest box or will completely discard the eggs? The way the existing nest is shaped, I can still try to move it as egg. Once chicks are born, it will be impossible to move them for me. Please advise. Paulie is taking proper care of the eggs and has allowed me so far near the nest for checking it. There has not been any aggression. If there is any existing thread, please guide me there. Thanks in advance.
 

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Zara

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Welcome to the Avenue :)

Honestly, I would just remove all the eggs and the coconut now while the eggs are fresh.
When eggs are laid, there´s no life developed until the hen broods them, and budgies don´t usually need dummy eggs.

That would be the best for your flock IMO.

edit; To add,
there´s a high chance these birds are siblings so that is another reason alongside inexperience, plus you have said yourself that breeding wasn´t your intention.
What is the point of allowing these eggs to be incubated, to later hatch potentially inbred chicks that may or may not not make it to adulthood due to young inexperienced parents and inexperienced owners.
I don´t say this to be mean or heartless, I´m just looking for the best solution for your birds, which is obviously your main focus also. I hope you understand.
 
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camelotshadow

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Welcome to the Avenue

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Zara

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Lady Jane

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I agree with everything Zara has written. The world does not need more budgies. Take out all nesting material right away and give the birds that laid eggs extra calcium in the food.
 

Kalik

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Hi Zara & Lady Jane, Thanks for the replies. I understand where you are coming from. Infact these were my first thought after reading through various posts on this forum when we first discovered the eggs. The only thing is that at this moment we don't have the heart to throw the eggs out due to the way parents are taking care of the eggs. Looking at their behavior, we thought of letting it continue. You can understand that being the first time owner, we are not really sure of their emotions with eggs. If it helps, there was an post on this forum with a checklist (dont remember author name) to decide if the owner should allow breeding or not. Well, I cant tick 100% checkboxes, but we can do majority of it. But yes, we are completely inexperienced for birds. If after this also, your suggestion will be to move them out, then I will do so. Thanks.
 

Zara

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we don't have the heart to throw the eggs out due to the way parents are taking care of the eggs. Looking at their behavior, we thought of letting it continue. You can understand that being the first time owner, we are not really sure of their emotions with eggs.
And what if they do not care for the chicks when they hatch? If you feel this way over an egg, imagine a dead baby bird.
I think for now, these eggs should be removed.

If you were serious about breeding, first check they´re not related and if not, you could start researching and learning how to care for and raise chicks, get your birds on the diet you want, vet checked, find homes in advance and maybe allow a clutch in the future when the adults are older and more mature.

I´m only one person, these are just my thoughts. I´m sure others will reply with their thoughts too.
 

Lady Jane

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You can easily distract a budgie with treats or new toys then remove the eggs. If the female budgies continue to play or brood the eggs the hormones will continue to surge in their bodies.
 

Shezbug

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After reading the thread I also think the most ethical and obviously the best option for all involved is to just remove the eggs asap. I can not see any positives or benefits for anyone (people, birds and eggs) from an attempt at raising chicks that are most likely related, raising unexpected and unplanned for clutches of chicks, fully or half raising chicks when you are still inexperienced about full grown birds..... this situation to me screams of serious future issues and heartache for you.
I do not mean to sound horrible but disposing of some undeveloped eggs in this situation is so very simple in comparison to knowing that you should of known more and been better prepared and not bred most likely related birds and then having a chick die in your care, that scenario is something that will play on your morals and mind for quite some time. Better to take the safest approach and dispose of the eggs is my thoughts.
 

tka

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I think you're making the best and kindest decision for everyone.

Raising offspring is incredibly hard on the parents, and inexperienced parents especially can run into problems. As an inexperienced owner, you aren't in a good position to take over the care of any babies. There's so much that can go wrong with handfeeding - anything from issues resulting from the babies from being kept at the wrong humidity to the chicks developing yeast infections in their crops. Sadly, we see a lot of inexperienced handfeeders coming to this board because they've run into problems and the chicks usually don't make it. We just want to spare you that heartache.

Do take the nest and eggs out. You may want to give them a longer sleep period - they should be getting 12 hours of darkness a night, but you can take this up to 14 hours to help curb hormones, nestiness and egg laying. Make sure they're getting a good diet, especially Paulie (who I think was the only one laying?); laying eggs uses up their bodies' resources, especially calcium.
 

PoukieBear

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If it helps, there was an post on this forum with a checklist (dont remember author name) to decide if the owner should allow breeding or not. Well, I cant tick 100% checkboxes, but we can do majority of it. But yes, we are completely inexperienced for birds. If after this also, your suggestion will be to move them out, then I will do so. Thanks.
That was one of my posts :)

Now that you have made the right decision of removing the "nest" (which isn't a real nest) and eggs, here is another check list of things you can do to help prevent more egg laying and broody behaviour. (sorry for the goofy formating.... the site doesn't like my copy and paste skills)



How to prevent breeding and egg laying.


  • Reduce Daylight Hours.
  • Cover the cage so your bird(s) only gets 8 hours of daylight per day.
  • Why? Budgies naturally breed in the summertime when days are longer. This allows them more time to forage for food to feed their growing clutch of chicks. By reducing daylight hours, you will also reduce hormones that trigger a bird wanting to breed.

  • Do not Overfeed.
  • Do not completely fill up your bird(s) food dish, or feed high fat/high protein foods.
  • Why? Budgies naturally breed when food is plentiful and easy to find. Budgies only need 1.5 teaspoons of seed per day. The rest of their diet should be vegetables and pellets.

  • Re-arrange the cage frequently.
  • Move perches, rotate toys, rearrange ladders and swings, move food and water dishes. You can even move the entire cage to a new location in your house if you have the space to do so.
  • Why? Budgies will only want to breed when they feel safe and comfortable and have a stable environment. By changing things up frequently, you can reduce the chances of breeding behaviour.

  • Remove any potential nesting spots.
  • Make sure there are no nest box, coconut shells, happy huts, grass baskets, pottery bowls, or anything else that is not meant for a budgie’s cage that could be mistaken for a nesting spot.
  • Why? Budgies can be opportunistic breeders and may use items that you think are unlikely nesting spots.

  • Do not stroke or pet your budgie’s back, wings, rump.
  • If you want to touch your budgie, give it some loving scritches at the head and neck area. You need to avoid stroking your budgie’s back.
  • Why? Stroking a budgie’s back is like molesting your bird. It’s part of the mating process and should be avoided at all costs.

  • Separate Male and Female birds.
  • Place your male and female birds in their own respective cages, or use a cage divider to separate them.
  • Why? If they can’t mate, they can’t breed.
 

Kalik

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That was one of my posts :)

Now that you have made the right decision of removing the "nest" (which isn't a real nest) and eggs, here is another check list of things you can do to help prevent more egg laying and broody behaviour. (sorry for the goofy formating.... the site doesn't like my copy and paste skills)



How to prevent breeding and egg laying.
Thanks for the suggestions. This will be really helpful.

On this note, Have another question to ask. Initially we were planning to get only two of them as I had read that it's better to get them in even numbers. Due to too much insistence from our son, we had to buy 3rd. We didn't buy 4th one as the cage available at the shops were not big at all.

I got a bigger cage built 2 months after bringing them home which is 150 CM height (without counting base support) 120 CM Length & 100 CM width. I think that this cage will be able to accommodate 4th one.

The two males (Archie & Cookie) are very well bonded with each other. One male & female (Archie & Paulie) are again bonded very well. Another male & female ( Cookie & Paulie) fight sometimes but not too much.

Do I really need a 4th one or let these three continue as it is? If it's not needed for the bird's well being then I don't have any intention of getting the 4th one.
 

PoukieBear

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I personally would not add another one at this time. It seems like they are mostly all getting along, and adding another bird into the mix could upset thier little flock as it is. Also, there is never a guaranty that they will all get along. If/When your hen goes into breeding condition, there may be a little bit of competition, so it would be best to start saving for an additional cage to put her in while her hormones are flowing.
 

Ripshod

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Both males sound to be well bonded, so I think it's safe to say the eggs were infertile. As @PoukieBear points out things can easily change in the future, you don't want two competing males in the same cage.
How large is their smaller cage? Is it large enough for a single female? You don't necessarily need to do it now but separating her from the boys isn't going to be easy. They will need seperate out-of-cage time for obvious reasons.
For now I'd keep them together so long as they're getting along. But you'll need to be watchful for the signs of competitive behaviours like guarding food dishes.
Enjoy your little flock.
 

Kalik

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Thanks PoukieBear & Ripshod. The smaller cage 75 CM length 60 CM width and 75 CM height. So hopefully it will be good for single one as and when needed. As suggested, I won't add any additional one at this time.
 
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