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**KAZ**

Points To Consider...............

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Breeding Budgies..........points to consider

 

 

1. How old are your budgies ?

For the sake of your budgies health, the minimum age for a hen and cock should be 12 months. Any younger and a hen can become egg bound and need urgent vet care. The maximum age for a hen to be bred should be 4 years and a cock at 5-6 years. At four years of age a hen struggles to produce enough calcium and may have issues laying an egg and become egg bound also. If you are in any doubt about your new budgies age with regard to breeding keep them longer before you begin to breed and ask for help on here in working out its age. A coloured cere is NO INDICATION of breeding age as a coloured cere can happen from 3 months onwards.

Breeding age

 

2. Do you have a plan and money set aside for vet care if needed ? Many young people enter into budgie breeding with parents saying..."yes, go ahead" but often the very same parents have no desire to allow veterinary care for any sick birds should the breeding project fail or present problems. Please check with your parents to be sure that they WILL allow a vet visit or two and pay for it, should the need arise. Make sure you have saved enough money to cover all the extra expenses. Breeding budgies for pocket money is no quick way to financial success. In reality it might well end up costing you more than a potential sale of babies.

 

 

3. Have you done your research and asked all the harder questions of responsible and experienced breeders ( not the kid next door who has done breeding once or twice ) ? Have you knowledge of the history and health of your breeding pair ? A pair of budgies newly bought for breeding purposes need both a settling in period of time before you start breeding them and you also need to know their history and their personality before proceeding to breed with them. Stress equals illness in budgies...stress from being caught, and put in a petshop, and brought to your home and put in a breeder cage...all these things CAN and do often cause budgies to get sick and die partway through breeding if you put them straight down to breed the second you get them home.

 

 

4. Your budgies are mating...does that mean a "pregnancy" and you need a nest box ? No. Budgies from a young age often indulge in recreational sex. Just because you see a pair of budgies mating does NOT mean there will be eggs or does NOT mean you have to put a nest box in their cage and set them up for future babies. YOU providing them a nest box gives them PERMISSION to lay eggs and have babies and a place to do it, regardless of age. Refer back to point one for age of breeding budgies.

 

 

5. What food must I provide to help my budgies breed ? Although breeding budgies need good food to withstand the rigors of breeding and raising a successful clutch, the foods you need should be the food they have been getting on a regular basis anyway...fresh vegies, especially greens, soft foods, quality seeds, pellets if you use them, etc. For added calcium requirements some liquid calcium added to the drinking water of birds you intent to breed would be beneficial, as would the addition of a cuttlebone to their cage. Bear in mind that cuttlebones arent always the best source of calcium and often are more something the budgies likes to "play with" or destroy just for an activity.

 

6. Do you have a safe place for the budgies to breed...cage and location ? Best place for a breeding pair is in a breeding cage of their own and not in an aviary with a pile of other birds and lots of nestboxes......i.e. Colony style.

colony vs closed breeding

Breeding is a time of stress for birds and birds get sick and die from stress. To give them the best chance of raising a clutch of babies successfully, you need to make it a stress free event. A separate breeding cage will help as there will be no interference in their nest from other birds, no destruction of their eggs or chicks from others hens who decide they want that particular nest, and assuming you have the breeder cabinet in a safe place. If you don't have a breeding room, then your bedroom might be the best place for them. Try to have it a cat and dog free space during this time for safety and reduction of stress on the birds. A breeder cage tucked into a dark wardrobe will not be a good place for them.

 

 

7. Climate and temperature for optimal breeding try and make the temperature and conditions the best and most comfortable for your breeding pairs. Bear in mind too warm and dry and environment may affect your eggs hatching or not. Try to not have your pairs in a cage situated in a draughty and cold area.

 

 

8. Have you set up your perches properly ? the perches in your breeding cabinet must be sturdy and not too thin for the mating act to be successful. Perches that roll around and are too thin to grip properly will not help the mating or fertilization of eggs. You may well end up with clutch after clutch of clear eggs if you do not address the perch problems. Age will also affect fertility...too young and the eggs wont be fertilized properly. Too old and the same end result.

 

 

9. Nest boxes and cages ? If you have to use a nest box in a normal type cage, try to attach it to the exterior of the cage and higher rather than lower at floor level. This can be attached by tying or wiring the nest box securely to the exterior of the cage with using either a hatch door as entry point to the nest box hole or by cutting a section out of your cage for entry ( you can always patch the cage again later ). Please make sure the cage is at least 2 ft by 2 ft by 2ft to ensure plenty of space for fledging youngsters. Try and have two perches so that parents can fly back and forth as part of the mating ritual to encourage breeding. A cramped breeder cage may well contribute to the parents attacking their own youngsters once fledged as their is no space and the babies find their way back into the nest box while the Mum tries to lay more eggs.

 

10. Your anxiety and interference with the breeding pair..... it is very easy to get excited over the prospect of breeding your budgies. Try to give the birds some privacy even if that mean covering two to three sides of their cage if it is in your bedroom. A breeder cage put in a high traffic area of the home may not get you the results you need as it may be stressful to the birds. Lots of anxious checking and rechecking by you also may cause problems for the birds feelings of safety and serenity in incubating eggs and raising a clutch. Try NOT to handle the eggs and shift them about in the nest box. If you need to candle the eggs to test if fertile or not, invest in a flexible shaft candling torch.This can be used without moving any eggs. Touching eggs will contaminate them with germs from your hands. Moving eggs will also upset the order in which the hen rotates the eggs to keep them at the best temperature for hatching. There is no real need for an inexperienced person to write on eggs. You can write on a card on the outside of the cage when the first eggs was laid and so on and then know when roughly to expect your first hatchings.

 

 

11. How and when to check the nestbox if you know you have eggs in a nest box and wish to check, try and do this while the hen is out of the nest box as many hens get agitated and kick the eggs around in the nest box while you are trying to look. This will cause addled eggs and those eggs will NOT hatch. She may also pierce the eggs with her claws while you are trying to look, causing death of chick and again eggs that wont develop. Best time to check a nest box is while the hen is out eating...early morning or early evening or both times.

Care of baby budgies in the nest

 

 

12. Homes for the babies ? Have you a plan that finds homes for your babies ? Try and remember that pet shops do not pay a lot for your babies so they would not be an ideal solution and make you wealthy. Are you prepared to keep any and do you have enough housing for them ? If you keep any can you identify them and stop them breeding with brothers and sisters ? If some of your babies are hatched in a handicapped state or become handicapped ( i.e. Flightless, splay legged, twisted feet and legs, rickets etc ) are you prepared to keep them and accommodate their special needs ? Have you thought ahead to the best life you can offer your babies in the future ?

 

 

13. Have you prepared a care sheet for your babies future parents and have you thought hard about what you want from the adoptive parents of a baby you have cared for ?

 

14. Have you hand rearing formula, crop needles and lots of time and expertise to raise chicks that may well be abandoned by their parents and go unfed or do you have work or school commitments ?

 

15. Examine your motives for wanting to breed your birds. Weigh up all the pros and cons. Are you doing this for yourself or the bird ? Have you considered ALL the implications of what may well be the end result of doubling or even tripling your flock ? Are you thinking the birds need to breed will make them unhappy if they dont ( wrong, by the way ) ? Be honest with yourself and do not blame the birds "need to breed" on you just wanting to do this.

 

16. Do you have FULL PARENTAL SUPPORT if underaged and do your parents have an agreement with you to cover any vets fees should they incur ?

 

******MAJOR POINT TO CONSIDER IS.......one pair of budgies set up to breed can turn into a disaster if the parents fails to feed babies or many other things that can occur. ALWAYS set up at least three pairs to breed at the same time or you may end up hand feeding babies and you may end up with chicks dying if the parents dont know what to do

Edited by Elly
Added to FAQ

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Guest Phoebe

:ygbudgie: Thanks so much for this KAZ, I, for one, am NOT ready to breed and I would hope other people would read this and realize that they too, are NOT in a position, at this time in their lives, to consider breeding either. :bluebudgie:

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If you could only get this post to flash up,each time someone,prints the words.

I WANT TO BREED>It woud save me,if no one else from getting :bluebudgie:

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If you could only get this post to flash up,each time someone,prints the words.

I WANT TO BREED>It woud save me,if no one else from getting :bluebudgie:

Yes...the plan is to link to this post at times like those. A request was made to have such an article ready for those times :dbb1:

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:bluebudgie: Kaz

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Very Good. One thing I would add to the section on how often to check the nest box.... Check the nest box at least once a day. The hen could have died from being egg bound and the chicks, depending on age, would need to be moved.

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Very Good. One thing I would add to the section on how often to check the nest box.... Check the nest box at least once a day. The hen could have died from being egg bound and the chicks, depending on age, would need to be moved.

QUOTE.....Best time to check a nest box is while the hen is out eating...early morning or early evening or both times.

I thought I covered that bit

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Sorry Kaz, I have read some posts hear that people say they were surprised to see eggs in the nest or a chick had hatch some time ago. It is obvious that they hadn't checked the nest box for a few days. I read your point as to when the best time was to check but it should be made clear that you must check the box every day.

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This is an article for those that are thinking of breeding and need to consider some main points. I have a link to Care of Baby Budgies in the nest as well. This wasnt intended as a How to do it ...topic.......or the article would be huge and we have all that other info in our FAQ section. Just the points some of our younger people may have not considered before recklessly jumping into breeding without prior thought or knowledge. :)

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Hi Kaz,

 

I would like this to be placed in the FAQ section as it would be easier to find when referring to it.

 

 

Feathers.

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Hi Kaz,

 

I would like this to be placed in the FAQ section as it would be easier to find when referring to it.

 

 

Feathers.

It has been pinned so easier to find, but our FAQ officer can put it in the FAQ section....Elly ?

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As a beginner I found this very useful information Kaz, thank you very much.

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Hi Kaz,

 

I would like this to be placed in the FAQ section as it would be easier to find when referring to it.

 

 

Feathers.

It has been pinned so easier to find, but our FAQ officer can put it in the FAQ section....Elly ?

 

will do :rip:

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Great article. Just one question, as you can tell I am new to this site and was wondering if there are any online directories of breeders? For a first hand experience of what is required when breeding budgies. It's easy for young kids, and adults, to get excited about breeding but what would be great if people could read this article then go, "okay well a breeder is here maybe I can ask to see his/her layout and how much is actually required."

 

But all in all a great article.

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Great article. Just one question, as you can tell I am new to this site and was wondering if there are any online directories of breeders? For a first hand experience of what is required when breeding budgies. It's easy for young kids, and adults, to get excited about breeding but what would be great if people could read this article then go, "okay well a breeder is here maybe I can ask to see his/her layout and how much is actually required."

 

But all in all a great article.

 

There is a wealth of budgie breeders on this forum. It is one of the best and most informative forums on the internet. people are here because they want to be helpful when questions are asked. A list of breeders on the net would result in many many phonecalls to people who have no time to help you out. We are here because we want to be...its volunteer and we all care about the birds. Advice is free. You just have to ask the questions.

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Thanks, when (if) time comes to try my hand at breeding I will be sure to ask away.

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For all the children on our forum who think they can breed budgies too young, or to make pocket money :D

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^_^

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Agree Kaz - You beat me to the ^_^:P

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Breeding Budgies..........points to consider

 

 

1. How old are your budgies ?

For the sake of your budgies health, the minimum age for a hen and cock should be 12 months. Any younger and a hen can become egg bound and need urgent vet care. The maximum age for a hen to be bred should be 4 years and a cock at 5-6 years. At four years of age a hen struggles to produce enough calcium and may have issues laying an egg and become egg bound also. If you are in any doubt about your new budgies age with regard to breeding keep them longer before you begin to breed and ask for help on here in working out its age. A coloured cere is NO INDICATION of breeding age as a coloured cere can happen from 3 months onwards.

Breeding age

 

2. Do you have a plan and money set aside for vet care if needed ? Many young people enter into budgie breeding with parents saying..."yes, go ahead" but often the very same parents have no desire to allow veterinary care for any sick birds should the breeding project fail or present problems. Please check with your parents to be sure that they WILL allow a vet visit or two and pay for it, should the need arise. Make sure you have saved enough money to cover all the extra expenses. Breeding budgies for pocket money is no quick way to financial success. In reality it might well end up costing you more than a potential sale of babies.

 

 

3. Have you done your research and asked all the harder questions of responsible and experienced breeders ( not the kid next door who has done breeding once or twice ) ? Have you knowledge of the history and health of your breeding pair ? A pair of budgies newly bought for breeding purposes need both a settling in period of time before you start breeding them and you also need to know their history and their personality before proceeding to breed with them. Stress equals illness in budgies...stress from being caught, and put in a petshop, and brought to your home and put in a breeder cage...all these things CAN and do often cause budgies to get sick and die partway through breeding if you put them straight down to breed the second you get them home.

 

 

4. Your budgies are mating...does that mean a "pregnancy" and you need a nest box ? No. Budgies from a young age often indulge in recreational sex. Just because you see a pair of budgies mating does NOT mean there will be eggs or does NOT mean you have to put a nest box in their cage and set them up for future babies. YOU providing them a nest box gives them PERMISSION to lay eggs and have babies and a place to do it, regardless of age. Refer back to point one for age of breeding budgies.

 

 

5. What food must I provide to help my budgies breed ? Although breeding budgies need good food to withstand the rigors of breeding and raising a successful clutch, the foods you need should be the food they have been getting on a regular basis anyway...fresh vegies, especially greens, soft foods, quality seeds, pellets if you use them, etc. For added calcium requirements some liquid calcium added to the drinking water of birds you intent to breed would be beneficial, as would the addition of a cuttlebone to their cage. Bear in mind that cuttlebones arent always the best source of calcium and often are more something the budgies likes to "play with" or destroy just for an activity.

 

6. Do you have a safe place for the budgies to breed...cage and location ? Best place for a breeding pair is in a breeding cage of their own and not in an aviary with a pile of other birds and lots of nestboxes......i.e. Colony style.

colony vs closed breeding

Breeding is a time of stress for birds and birds get sick and die from stress. To give them the best chance of raising a clutch of babies successfully, you need to make it a stress free event. A separate breeding cage will help as there will be no interference in their nest from other birds, no destruction of their eggs or chicks from others hens who decide they want that particular nest, and assuming you have the breeder cabinet in a safe place. If you don't have a breeding room, then your bedroom might be the best place for them. Try to have it a cat and dog free space during this time for safety and reduction of stress on the birds. A breeder cage tucked into a dark wardrobe will not be a good place for them.

 

 

7. Climate and temperature for optimal breeding try and make the temperature and conditions the best and most comfortable for your breeding pairs. Bear in mind too warm and dry and environment may affect your eggs hatching or not. Try to not have your pairs in a cage situated in a draughty and cold area.

 

 

8. Have you set up your perches properly ? the perches in your breeding cabinet must be sturdy and not too thin for the mating act to be successful. Perches that roll around and are too thin to grip properly will not help the mating or fertilization of eggs. You may well end up with clutch after clutch of clear eggs if you do not address the perch problems. Age will also affect fertility...too young and the eggs wont be fertilized properly. Too old and the same end result.

 

 

9. Nest boxes and cages ? If you have to use a nest box in a normal type cage, try to attach it to the exterior of the cage and higher rather than lower at floor level. This can be attached by tying or wiring the nest box securely to the exterior of the cage with using either a hatch door as entry point to the nest box hole or by cutting a section out of your cage for entry ( you can always patch the cage again later ). Please make sure the cage is at least 2 ft by 2 ft by 2ft to ensure plenty of space for fledging youngsters. Try and have two perches so that parents can fly back and forth as part of the mating ritual to encourage breeding. A cramped breeder cage may well contribute to the parents attacking their own youngsters once fledged as their is no space and the babies find their way back into the nest box while the Mum tries to lay more eggs.

 

10. Your anxiety and interference with the breeding pair..... it is very easy to get excited over the prospect of breeding your budgies. Try to give the birds some privacy even if that mean covering two to three sides of their cage if it is in your bedroom. A breeder cage put in a high traffic area of the home may not get you the results you need as it may be stressful to the birds. Lots of anxious checking and rechecking by you also may cause problems for the birds feelings of safety and serenity in incubating eggs and raising a clutch. Try NOT to handle the eggs and shift them about in the nest box. If you need to candle the eggs to test if fertile or not, invest in a flexible shaft candling torch.This can be used without moving any eggs. Touching eggs will contaminate them with germs from your hands. Moving eggs will also upset the order in which the hen rotates the eggs to keep them at the best temperature for hatching. There is no real need for an inexperienced person to write on eggs. You can write on a card on the outside of the cage when the first eggs was laid and so on and then know when roughly to expect your first hatchings.

 

 

11. How and when to check the nestbox if you know you have eggs in a nest box and wish to check, try and do this while the hen is out of the nest box as many hens get agitated and kick the eggs around in the nest box while you are trying to look. This will cause addled eggs and those eggs will NOT hatch. She may also pierce the eggs with her claws while you are trying to look, causing death of chick and again eggs that wont develop. Best time to check a nest box is while the hen is out eating...early morning or early evening or both times.

Care of baby budgies in the nest

 

 

12. Homes for the babies ? Have you a plan that finds homes for your babies ? Try and remember that pet shops do not pay a lot for your babies so they would not be an ideal solution and make you wealthy. Are you prepared to keep any and do you have enough housing for them ? If you keep any can you identify them and stop them breeding with brothers and sisters ? If some of your babies are hatched in a handicapped state or become handicapped ( i.e. Flightless, splay legged, twisted feet and legs, rickets etc ) are you prepared to keep them and accommodate their special needs ? Have you thought ahead to the best life you can offer your babies in the future ?

 

 

13. Have you prepared a care sheet for your babies future parents and have you thought hard about what you want from the adoptive parents of a baby you have cared for ?

 

14. Have you hand rearing formula, crop needles and lots of time and expertise to raise chicks that may well be abandoned by their parents and go unfed or do you have work or school commitments ?

 

15. Examine your motives for wanting to breed your birds. Weigh up all the pros and cons. Are you doing this for yourself or the bird ? Have you considered ALL the implications of what may well be the end result of doubling or even tripling your flock ? Are you thinking the birds need to breed will make them unhappy if they dont ( wrong, by the way ) ? Be honest with yourself and do not blame the birds "need to breed" on you just wanting to do this.

 

16. Do you have FULL PARENTAL SUPPORT if underaged and do your parents have an agreement with you to cover any vets fees should they incur ?

 

******MAJOR POINT TO CONSIDER IS.......one pair of budgies set up to breed can turn into a disaster if the parents fails to feed babies or many other things that can occur. ALWAYS set up at least three pairs to breed at the same time or you may end up hand feeding babies and you may end up with chicks dying if the parents dont know what to do

 

Enjoyed your article very much. Thank you

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well written article. this has given me great advice ;) and im sure many others have benifitted from it

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Great article. Just one question, as you can tell I am new to this site and was wondering if there are any online directories of breeders? For a first hand experience of what is required when breeding budgies. It's easy for young kids, and adults, to get excited about breeding but what would be great if people could read this article then go, "okay well a breeder is here maybe I can ask to see his/her layout and how much is actually required."

 

But all in all a great article.

 

The first of many great posts :hap:

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Thanks alot for this information! I hope everyone that is trying to breed and have no clue about the many problems that can come out read this!

 

I used to breed budgies when I was younger and never had any problems, lucky for me.. and with the support of my parents it was easy and I gained a lot of experience from those times as well ;)

 

Now I'm preparing to start breeding again next year! I have the space, the cages needed, the money, the support, the super experienced breeders on this site and the breeding flock all I need is to wait a whole year so my flock is old enough.. My oldest hen is about 6 months and my youngest cock is about 2 months I think.. but since I'm not sure I figured I'll just wait a whole year..

 

Meanwhile I'm still learning all I can and at the same time giving my budgies the time they need to settle down and its just the perfect amount of time I need to get to know their personalities and see if they have what it takes to be good parents.

Edited by Cory

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