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Hello,

My cockatiel Kiwi laid 4 infertile eggs two months ago. After exhibiting more hormonal behavior, I left her to sleep for longer hours and avoided petting her when she was doing her mating thingy.. but she laid another egg last night.

I kept her last eggs in there for a LONG time.. I left them for 3 more weeks after she stopped showing interest in them because I was paranoid. I took them out last week because she was showing hormonal behavior again. Might have not been a good idea..

Anyways, I know chronic egg-laying is described as more than 2 clutches a year.. but how far are those clutches supposed to be apart? Last vet visit the vet said they have an injection to have them prevent lying eggs, IF I should get it at all, should I do it after this clutch or wait for her to start another one?

Also, if you guys have any recipes that you give to your birds who have just laid eggs (rich in calcium) please let me know. I'm so worried about her :(

Thank you!
 

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I've read it is ok for a healthy parrot to lay one clutch a year, but two can be very stressful on their bodies.

That injection is very expensive and at this point you do not need it. Just make sure she has access to a cuttlebone or avian calcium powder, protein (pellets, beans, eggs, some vegetables) along with some things with vitamin A and E (some found in eggs, carrots, kale fat soluble vitamins) and vitamin D to help prevent egg binding if she begins to lay more eggs. I remember reading a while ago about how just giving calcium doesn't save them from egg binding, you have to add other vitamins on top of it. That's why calcium powders are nice because besides calcium, they have some other vitamins and minerals in them. If she is a chronic egg layer then she might need that or the other foods and not just a cuttlebone. I think right now you just need to find out what is causing her hormonal behavior and she will stop. :)
My 'tiel laid about 16 eggs before she stopped once I removed what caused her behavior. It was millet, she had too much food in there and it triggered breeding behaviors. xP
http://www.vcahospitals.com/main/pe...rticle/animal-health/egg-binding-in-birds/863

You can replace the eggs with marbles if you are worried about them breaking. Just try and get the size as close as possible to the egg, otherwise there are things called dummy eggs you can order for cockatiel size.
 

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I've read it is ok for a healthy parrot to lay one clutch a year, but two can be very stressful on their bodies.
I am no way an expert, but I have cockatiels that are breeding (novices) and I was told by the very expert that its OK for them to have 4 clutches a year (2 in a row, and 2 in a few months) without impacting their health.
 

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I am having a similar problem with my Emma. She is on her second set of infertile eggs.

I am trying all the hormone control techniques.

Kiwi: How did you identify that it was the millet that was causing the egg laying? I don't give my birds millet. But, perhaps it's the seed I give them in the afternoon? Did you feed them less total food when you took the millet out?
 

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Chipper&Trillie- There are lots of different opinions on this around the web, so the expert may be correct for birds when they are breeding. I remember reading that Cockatiels lay one to two clutches in the wild and any more than that is unnatural to them, but that is without the assistance we provide them with additional nutrition, calcium, and vitamins. So they are able to lay more in captivity like that. I think for pet birds they don't want them to lay more than one or two clutches because of the risk of chronic egg laying, egg binding, nutritional deficiencies, and how stressful it can be on them when they don't have the right nutrition they need to breed available to them. Since they are only laying for the sake of laying and not breeding birds it isn't very healthy. Owners who do not provide parrots the nutrition they need when they are laying may lose their birds during the first or second clutch so I think that is why people say that. :(

dianne- I tried to look for what may be causing her to lay. I think it was a combination of things I tried that got her to stop, but the millet was the ultimate one. Kiwi was underweight from her leg injury and so I made sure that she had plenty of food available to eat so she could recover from it. I tried all of the other hormone control techniques before restricting her food because of this. I covered her cage with a blanket to make it darker and made sure she got 12 hours of sleep. In the morning I would completely uncover her cage so it didn't mimic a dark space to lay eggs. I changed her travel cage liner more often to get rid of the seeds she would spill on the bottom, she would like to mimic a nest with the millet seeds. Then eventually after about two weeks of that with no change her weight was back up so I decided to restrict her food. I got rid of the big millet sprig she had and dumped her food container daily to refill it with just the amount of food she needed. That was what seemed to stop the egg laying, she laid about one more egg before she totally stopped once the food was back to normal. That's how I found out it was either making a nest with the millet or the extra food that came from it. :)
 

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Thank you, Kiwi.
I think I may need to try food restriction. May I ask how you figured out how much food she needed?
 
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