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My cockatiel laying first eggs

Curlybird

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my tiel was 7 months old and laid her first egg! She laid another 2 days later and carried on till she had 4 eggs, these are not fertile as she is an only bird. Hand reared very tame and sweet natured, loves me and my hubby. 11 days after laying her last egg she started hormonal behaviour again, raising her tail and clucking every time she was in her cage, also lost interest in her eggs and only sat on them through the night, one night she didn't sit on her eggs so I took one away, she was OK, so after taking a 2nd egg she was still OK, when I took the last 2 away she was not happy so I put 2 eggs back, now this morning she has laid another. So she now has 3. She is back to been super defensive and I can't go anywhere near her cage, is this starting all over again? Did I do something wrong? I have tried to go with her all the way and let her lead me on what she wanted.
 

Zara

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Cockatiels are notorious for re-laying lost eggs. It can lead to lots of problems for them mainly calcium deficiencies which can lead to egg binding.

For future eggs, and the ones now, just leave them be. Leave them in there up to 3 weeks, but if you notice she clearly abandons them for a good few days, remove them.
When removing eggs, remove them all at once, including any ¨nest¨ she may have made on the cage floor. Rearrange all the perches, toys and water bowls in the cage, and add planty fo foraging activities. Adding a new toy can help too.

Be sure she is getting 12 hours undisturbed sleep at night. You can increase this as she gets hormonal, up to 14 hours. Be sure that during the day, the light is night and bright, not dim.

Last thing to add is to make sure she is getting calcium. Pellets as part of the main diet daily is good. Then on top of that offer veggies daily that are rich in calcium, carrots, bok choy, dill, parsley, sesame seeds, kale. (If you give spinach, give in moderation as too much can actually impede calcium absorbtion, personally I don´t give it at all). You can offer a small amount of boiled egg too, as well as ground egg shells (important to cook them and grind into a powder). You can also look into calcium supplements.
If your bird doesn´t eat pellets that contain vitamin D3, then she will need it either as a supplement, or by direct unfiltered sunshine. The vitamin D3 is needed so her body can take the calcium from the foods she ate.

@Tiel Feathers @finchly did I miss anything?
 

Curlybird

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Cockatiels are notorious for re-laying lost eggs. It can lead to lots of problems for them mainly calcium deficiencies which can lead to egg binding.

For future eggs, and the ones now, just leave them be. Leave them in there up to 3 weeks, but if you notice she clearly abandons them for a good few days, remove them.
When removing eggs, remove them all at once, including any ¨nest¨ she may have made on the cage floor. Rearrange all the perches, toys and water bowls in the cage, and add planty fo foraging activities. Adding a new toy can help too.

Be sure she is getting 12 hours undisturbed sleep at night. You can increase this as she gets hormonal, up to 14 hours. Be sure that during the day, the light is night and bright, not dim.

Last thing to add is to make sure she is getting calcium. Pellets as part of the main diet daily is good. Then on top of that offer veggies daily that are rich in calcium, carrots, bok choy, dill, parsley, sesame seeds, kale. (If you give spinach, give in moderation as too much can actually impede calcium absorbtion, personally I don´t give it at all). You can offer a small amount of boiled egg too, as well as ground egg shells (important to cook them and grind into a powder). You can also look into calcium supplements.
If your bird doesn´t eat pellets that contain vitamin D3, then she will need it either as a supplement, or by direct unfiltered sunshine. The vitamin D3 is needed so her body can take the calcium from the foods she ate.

@Tiel Feathers @finchly did I miss anything?
 

Tiel Feathers

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I think that about sums it up! You can purchase dummy eggs if you don’t want to deal with the possibility of her eggs breaking. Make sure you don’t pet her back because that can make her extra hormonal and trigger egg laying.
 

Curlybird

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Thank you so much for your advice, I will leave her be with her eggs as you say, at the moment I put her to bed at 7pm and dim the light, she is in our front room with the tv, we are usually in bed by ten and up about 7.30. She us still coming out of her cage now and then to poop and have cuddles, I spoil her with her favourite treats. Just want my baby bird back.
 

Tiel Feathers

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It’s good she comes out once in a while and moves around. It is hard to have your bird sitting on eggs, but she should be back to normal when it’s all over. If you can increase her darkness by an hour two, that might help. Just make sure she doesn’t think of her cage, or anything in it, as a nest so she doesn’t go back to laying.
 

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If she’s in the room while you watch TV she might not really be resting. I have some that rest and some that watch TV with us! So, you might cover the cage for better sleep.

@Zara I think you got it all! Good job!
 

Curlybird

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Cockatiels are notorious for re-laying lost eggs. It can lead to lots of problems for them mainly calcium deficiencies which can lead to egg binding.

For future eggs, and the ones now, just leave them be. Leave them in there up to 3 weeks, but if you notice she clearly abandons them for a good few days, remove them.
When removing eggs, remove them all at once, including any ¨nest¨ she may have made on the cage floor. Rearrange all the perches, toys and water bowls in the cage, and add planty fo foraging activities. Adding a new toy can help too.

Be sure she is getting 12 hours undisturbed sleep at night. You can increase this as she gets hormonal, up to 14 hours. Be sure that during the day, the light is night and bright, not dim.

Last thing to add is to make sure she is getting calcium. Pellets as part of the main diet daily is good. Then on top of that offer veggies daily that are rich in calcium, carrots, bok choy, dill, parsley, sesame seeds, kale. (If you give spinach, give in moderation as too much can actually impede calcium absorbtion, personally I don´t give it at all). You can offer a small amount of boiled egg too, as well as ground egg shells (important to cook them and grind into a powder). You can also look into calcium supplements.
If your bird doesn´t eat pellets that contain vitamin D3, then she will need it either as a supplement, or by direct unfiltered sunshine. The vitamin D3 is needed so her body can take the calcium from the foods she ate.

@Tiel Feathers @finchly did I miss anything?
 

Curlybird

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an update on my bird, I have followed advice and just left her to get on with it, as I said before she laid 4 eggs and after I took away 2 because she started to ignore them she was not happy about me taking away the last 2 eggs so I left them in, she has now laid another 4 so is now sat on six eggs, she is still OK and I am encouraging her to eat what she needs, and she is still coming out of her cage at least once a day, as this is my first tiel I think I just need reassuring this is normal behaviour, I do worry a bit too much maybe.
 

Tiel Feathers

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Don’t take the eggs away unless she clearly abandons them for at least a week, then take them out all at once. Hens often don’t sit on their eggs until two or three are laid. It’s good she’s coming out and eating well. If possible, I would try to get her to come out a bit more, but don’t force her. She might not give them up until three weeks from the first egg. When you finally remove them, remove them all at once.
 
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Curlybird

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Don’t take the eggs away unless she clearly abandons them for at least a week, then take them out all at once. Hens often don’t sit on their eggs until two or three are laid. It’s good she’s coming out and eating well. If possible, I would try to get her to come out a bit more, but don’t force her. She might not give them up until three weeks from the first egg. When you finally remove them, remove them all at once.
I feel so sorry for her, these are unfertilised eggs so there will be nothing at the end and she has been sat on eggs since 4th Jan ( 4weeks now) and still has weeks to go yet as she started laying her second clutch just a week ago. Thank you for your advice.
 

Zara

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You need to be very careful here.

What has happened is your bird abandoned them a week ago and started re-laying because the box was still there.

In future, just take the eggs at the 3 week mark before she lays again.

If you let her, she will just lay and lay and lay until she runs into problems.

@Tiel Feathers @finchly might have some thoughts on how long to leave the current eggs. 4 weeks is a long time sitting on eggs.
 

Tiel Feathers

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I really shake things up when my hen lays. I move her around, take her away from the “nest” into another room for a while, rearrange the cage, and generally make egg laying seem like not a good thing to go at the moment. If you have a nest box, take it out now and put the eggs on the bottom of the cage on a paper towel. You don’t want her to keep sitting in her nest box laying eggs until you can’t tell when one clutch ends and another begins. Definitely keep all eggs until the three week mark of the clutch when she abandons them, and then take them out all at once. I feel like really disrupting the cycle helps. I know it’s sad to see them invest so much into something that will never be. One of my birds wants to be a mommy so bad.
 
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finchly

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And don't feed rich foods.... I've been giving my high-vitamin super duper egg food to ALL the birds, which really should just go to finches. Now I have 2 cockatiel hens laying eggs. Ugh.
 

Curlybird

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Thank you again for your advice, I will keep you updated.
Hi everyone, just an update on my bird, she has been sat on eggs which seems like an age, she is now coming out of her cage a lot more and not bothering with the eggs during the day, and I don't think she has sat on them for the last two nights, she had 6 eggs on a paper towel al the bottom of her cage and yesterday she kicked 2 out, I have left them where they are as she keeps going and rolling them around. She has put weight back on but has started clucking again for about a week now ( lifting her tail and doing heart wings and chirping) this behaviour seems to be getting less as I gave moved her cage around and added a new perch. I am just hoping we are getting to the end of what seems like for ever. Love my little bird and it is hard to watch her go through this. Next time might be easier!! Would love to think there won't be a next time, not finished with this time yet.
 

Tiel Feathers

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I’m glad she seems like she’s loosing interest. Keep rearranging her cage every so often, and do whatever you can to make it uncomfortable for her to be nesting so she won’t lay more eggs.
 

Curlybird

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Hi everyone, just an update on my bird, she has been sat on eggs which seems like an age, she is now coming out of her cage a lot more and not bothering with the eggs during the day, and I don't think she has sat on them for the last two nights, she had 6 eggs on a paper towel al the bottom of her cage and yesterday she kicked 2 out, I have left them where they are as she keeps going and rolling them around. She has put weight back on but has started clucking again for about a week now ( lifting her tail and doing heart wings and chirping) this behaviour seems to be getting less as I gave moved her cage around and added a new perch. I am just hoping we are getting to the end of what seems like for ever. Love my little bird and it is hard to watch her go through this. Next time might be easier!! Would love to think there won't be a next time, not finished with this time yet.
I’m glad she seems like she’s loosing interest. Keep rearranging her cage every so often, and do whatever you can to make it uncomfortable for her to be nesting so she won’t lay more eggs.
Hi everyone, just an update on my bird, she has been sat on eggs which seems like an age, she is now coming out of her cage a lot more and not bothering with the eggs during the day, and I don't think she has sat on them for the last two nights, she had 6 eggs on a paper towel al the bottom of her cage and yesterday she kicked 2 out, I have left them where they are as she keeps going and rolling them around. She has put weight back on but has started clucking again for about a week now ( lifting her tail and doing heart wings and chirping) this behaviour seems to be getting less as I gave moved her cage around and added a new perch. I am just hoping we are getting to the end of what seems like for ever. Love my little bird and it is hard to watch her go through this. Next time might be easier!! Would love to think there won't be a next time, not finished with this time yet.
Well I thought everything was going well and my bird was getting back to normal, (which she is) but guess what...... she just laid another egg!!! I did not see this coming, she has showed no signs of laying other than putting on weight. I am at a loss what to do next. She has 4 eggs in her nest, 2 which she has kicked out and now 1 more on the floor of the cage. She has let me change her nest for a soft cloth so I have put all 7 eggs on so let's see how she goes. And she is not sitting on them like before. Any other ideas?
 

Tiel Feathers

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When did she lay the last egg? How long has it been since she sat on them?
 

Curlybird

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When did she lay the last egg? How long has it been since she sat on them?
She laid the last egg this morning (23rd feb) and she last sat on them through the night Friday last week. Kicked 2 eggs out on Saturday and not bothered with them since other than to roll them around a bit. She hasn't bothered with the egg she layed this morning.
 
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