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Breeder Basics

An introduction to bird breeding: The eggs!

From left to Right, in pairs: Zebra Finch eggs (actually broken in half, but it's a good idea of how small they are), Budgie eggs, cockatiel and Japanese Quail eggs.


Budgie eggs! My one hen, Buzzsaw always used to lay in any tight spot. All (as far as I know) parrots lay white, chicken-like eggs.

One of Buzzsaw's first clutches. laid in one of my dresser drawers.

Cockatiel eggs are tiny, but not as small as Zebra finch or budgie eggs. They can be as long as an inch.

Cockatiel eggs laid in a nest box. Sorry about the washed out effect, guys!

Zebra Finches lay absolutely microscopic eggs. It's hard to imagine that something so tiny not only survives, but eventually hatches and grows from an eggs that small! To me, this is a miracle. :-)

Zebra Finch eggs are tiny little things!

Japanese Quail eggs. They're rather large for the size of the bird they come from and they're spotted. You can tell the difference between the hens' eggs by the spotting patterns and the size.


A warning about Japanese Quail. They, like the famous chicken, are bred to lay LOTS of eggs. One hen can lay up to 300 a YEAR. This image shows a basket (just about 70 eggs) from two hens in a period of 3 and a half months!


With Breeding comes the importance of keeping detailed records! Below are the forms I use when recording. I also keep a small notebook and dry erase 3 month calander close to the nest boxes. Every time something happens - from hatching to fledging and talking, I mark it down on the calander and notebook. At the end of the breeding season I add the notebook to my records, which are in a large 3 ring binder.

The binder is seperated into different sections according to species and who the bird is paired off with. In each section I have a sheet for each bird and it lists medical problems, accidents, and even minor trips to the vet. If a bird lays 'wind' eggs (AKA shelless eggs), I need to know when and what was happening with their diet.



Now, onto the detailed stuff! To go to the species You're interested in, just click the below links and they'll take you to the breeding pages. Remember: I only breed one of the below listed species as a regular hobby, so I don't have all the information I would like to list :-) .


Zebra Finches

Japanese Quail


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Why did the egg cross the road? To avoid the chicken.

Cockatiels and Conures and Finches, OH MY!