Answers For Breeding And Feeding Budgies

2
Read in 9 minutes

Hello, My 2 parakeets had been mating & the hen has been laying 14-15 eggs so far.

 

After the first 9, the male who had been guarding the nest abandoned the eggs.

 

It seemed they are all unfertilized after looking at them under a bright flashlight.

 

Then they started building another nest under the table where I keep all their supplies (inside a bucket).

 

Now they have 4 more eggs and the male is always the one sitting on the eggs most of the time.

 

The hen will join him at night or when they take turn guarding while the male feeds himself or poops outside the nesting area.

 

Now I notice the hen has a reddish color in her cloaca area.

 

I’m really concerned about her health because she’s laid so many eggs.

 

The couple has mated 3 times since we noticed the breeding process.

 

If they are all unfertilized eggs, what shall I do?

 

I’m so sad for them if all of their eggs are not fertilized, they had worked so hard in the building, guarding, and sitting on the eggs all this time.

 

I haven’t been able to candle the last 4 eggs in the nest because the birds are always there.

 

Is it normal to have a female budgie that lays so many eggs and none of them are live eggs?

 

Thanks for your help.

 

Hi Julie,


I would advocate it is time to shut down egg production.


Budgies like cockatiels, and even some macaws as in blue and golds are prone to what we call prolific egg laying.


It takes its toll on the body because so many calories are directed towards the production of eggs that are necessary calories for feather growth and other metabolic factors then get restricted.

We suggest getting rid of all of the nests totally then subject the female to light therapy.

Light therapy instructions can be found here 

best of luck
Mitchr

 

Hi Mitch,

Thanks for replying to my question & concern about my hen parakeet laying so many eggs.

 

Today when the male took a few seconds break from sitting on the eggs, I saw there were more than just the 4 I thought were there.

 

There were at least 6-7.

 

I couldn’t really count & inspect the eggs but it seemed like 2-3 maybe smaller size eggs than the 14 the hen had laid before.

 

Okay, so you said the 72 hours light treatment.

 

Is it in any kind of consistent lights? I’m thinking I’ll take her to my walk-in closet and leave the lights on for 72 hrs.

 

Just give her enough food & water in the cage.

 

Is that all? What about the male that’s still guarding the eggs?

 

He’s been diligently sitting on them since day 1.

 

He is very protective of the eggs.

 

The thing that concerns me is his cere color.

 

It’s brown. According to what I’ve read online, for male parakeets with brown cere only means he has a tumor or something in his reproductive system and that may cause him to be infertile.

 

If all of the 7 eggs now under his care are all unfertilized like the first 10…then most likely you’ll advise me to remove them.

 

But if any of them has those veins in it…I should just leave the egg/s in the nest and keep him there?

 

What happens then if one or a few of the eggs are live eggs and I break the hen’s egg-laying cycle and bring her back to reunite her with the other birds?

 

Will, she wanna care for the chicks if they actually hatch?

 

I already made an appointment on Monday to bring her (both of them) to an avian veterinarian.

 

I noticed her cloaca area is bare & red. She won’t let me touch her to examine her.

 

I don’t know if she’s bleeding at all…has she lost some feathers in her cloaca area due to the excessive egg laying?

 

Thanks for your time replying to my email.

 

I love my birds…and I just want them to be happy & healthy.

 

I just have to admit I almost have no knowledge about their well being.

 

And I don’t know or understand why they kept mating (3x that I saw) after the hen had laid more than the normal 8 egg count…and while we were gone last week and under my friend’s care…if these lovebirds had mated more times or not…and if that’s why she has more eggs.

Thanks for your help – Julia ☺️

 

Hi Julia,

The light in the ceiling of the walk-in closet is too far away from the cage to provide enough data from the bulb for the birds pineal gland.

 

Your best play with lighting is to put a light fixture directly over the cage, as close to the bird as possible.

 

Provide fresh food and water then cover the cage and light at night leaving the light on above the cage all 72 hours.

 

I would strongly advocate removing all of the eggs (along with all nesting opportunities) immediately to help with brooding behavior reduction.

 

Keep minimal amounts of food in her cage.

 

A liquid calcium supplement should be added to the water and a general all-purpose supplement to the food.

 

An overabundance of food will lead a bird to believe that there’s plenty of food to feed babies and we don’t want her to think that.

 

I would recommend this treatment for both birds in separate cages.

 

Your (male) budgies cere color is brown indicating that he is actually a she which is why none of your eggs are getting fertilized.

 

Your birds are not mating, they are just producing eggs and you might want to check the “he” (what you thought was the male) to see if the vent is irritated as well.

 

A normal budgie clutch size is from 4 to 6.

 

I have a suspicion that both birds are laying eggs providing that many eggs.

 

In that, you’ve said the birds keep “mating” which is producing the eggs, in reality, any female budgie can produce eggs without the presence of a male budgie.

 

You have two females whose reproductive systems need to shut down using the techniques mentioned above.

 

Keep us in the loop

 

best

mitchr

 

Hi Mitch,

That’s what I thought of the male budgie with brown cere…that it was a she.

 

But I saw them mating.

 

He was on top of the hen.

 

They did this 3 times.

 

If I had not seen this action with my own eyes, I would still call the male a she.

 

My kids are still in denial that it is a HE.

 

Is it possible for a female budgie to imitate the mating action in nature where the male bird is on top of the female when they are both females?

 

This is why I wanna take them both to the vet to make sure if he is actually a she or it is really a he with a reproductive problem.

 

Yes Julia

 

All species need a form of sexual release and your budgies found a way.

 

The vet check is a very good plan.

 

 

Quora Question
How much bird seed or pellets
should I feed my budgie, in grams?

 

For almost 100 million years, budgies and grass parakeets got along splendidly with zero human intervention.

 

I have fact checked the following thoroughly:  not one pellet tree nor pellet bush has ever been discovered on the continent of Australia or anywhere else in the world for that matter.


Most pellets contain soy which we’re finding can have a negative impact on birds hormonally.


Pellets are not inherently bad but it’s important to make distinctions between pellets.


a video of our budgie aviary – 

 

If you take Harrison’s adult lifetime organic non-GMO line, its available in four sizes but every size has the same formulation.


Hagen pellets come in three sizes but each size is formulated with fat and protein to the appropriate bird size so that the smaller granules will have less protein and the larger sticks will have more protein and fat for the bigger birds.


Australian grass parakeets will eat 10 to 12 different seeds and several dozen food items in the wild.


They like leafy greens and sprouts but from my personal experience (currently having 10 budgies) they will eat mostly millet if given the chance. However, we have gotten them well accustomed to cucumber slices and now a wider variety of vegetables daily.


We are working on getting the budgies to eat different mixed vegetables and having great success.

 


We like the Tweeky clean feeders regardless of how many birds are in the cage.


Our aviary has three mess-less feeders, two mounted outside and one mounted inside.

 

About every 24 hours I top them off then every three days I completely empty them, wash them and refill them.


Birds are gonna want to eat when they want to eat and asking an isolated question about how much to feed a particular bird is impossible to answer because we don’t know about the bird’s environment if it’s flighted and what activity it displays.


Thus I advocate plenty of food.


Another problem with a hundred percent pellet diet is that it’s counterintuitive.


Birds like cracking open seeds that’s why they have the “hookbill” by design.


Lastly, keep in mind that all the bird food lines from Higgins including their Vita Seed and the seed and food blends from Hagen contain pellets ensuring that your birds are going to get some sort of pellet because they will trip over pellet morsels with their beak as they are eating.

best

mitchr

Author:

He's handled a 1000 birds of numerous species when they would visit their monthly birdie brunch in the old Portage Park (Chicago, IL) facility. The one with the parrot playground. Mitch has written and published more than 1100 articles on captive bird care. He's met with the majority of  CEO's and business owners for most brands in the pet bird space and does so on a regular basis. He also constantly interacts with avian veterinarians and influencers globally.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.