Bird Breeding: All about incubating eggs and raising chicks

Breeding / Breeders Resources 
Listing of Breeders (By Species or Location)

Hatchling and Hatching Eggs

Octagon 20 Advance

Setting Birds Up for Breeding ... Housing Birds


Incubation / Egg Laying

An egg can be fertilized 24 hours before actual egg laying. Eggs remain viable for 10 days after they have been laid before losing viability. It is best to start incubating eggs as close to laying as possible.

Below are some relevant web resources:

Developments inside the egg


Misshapen Chicken EggTaking Care of Chicks:


ChickChick / Handfeeding Problems

Bird Nursery - Information about:

  • Gas-filled Crop (Candida)
  • Hydration Therapy for Chicks
  • Punctured Crop or Esophagus
  • Splay-legged Chicks

Reproductive Dysfunctions / Breeding-related Challenges:

Provides Info on Breeding, Mutations, Genetics and Bird-specific Breeding Requirements / Procedures and Challenges, Mate Aggression; Unsuccessful Breeding (Infertility, dead-in-shells, etc.)


Aviary Management:

Breeding Loan Agreements ... Record Keeping ... Bird Identification ... Closed Aviary Concept ... Pharmaceutical Supplies



I'm looking for advice

We have a pair of cockatiels who only eat seed mix, they have never taken to any additional foods, cooked or raw.

They have recently mated, and have laid 4 eggs. They seem amazing and have taken it in turns to sit on the eggs. They have become protective and look to be doing the right thing.

We did not intend in breeding them but as they were showing signs of wanting to we wanted to give them the opportunity at a natural life as possible so added a nest box to see what would happen.

My question is this. As they only eat a seed mix and mainly small seed, what should I provide for them to feed the chicks?

Will they accept cooked or raw veg etc once the chicks are here as they are still ignoring what I am offering. I've tried porridge, egg, mashed bananas, cooked and raw veg. I have read that baby food is acceptable but wanted advice.

Is there other foods I should put in thats suitable for the chicks?

I do not want to hand feed I want to give mum and dad the chance.

Any advice would be great


Once the chicks arrive, the parents will be going through an aweful lot of food - and they will typically gladly accept food items that they would not ordinarily touch.  Boiled eggs (smashed down with a fork WITH EGG SHELL) are favorites as are  sprouted seeds, millet spray, high protein foods are important to support the chicks' rapid growth.

Hi, The couple of cocktail already hatches 5 chicks. One of the small died las days. And another is very small than others. And also the male cocktail looks very weak despite of the female that look very strong, so what can I do? Right now the chicks are 10 days old.

You may want to pull the oldest chick(s) that is / are hogging the food supply away from the youngest one(s).  The oldest ones are larger and stronger and more demanding, and the parents will feed them first and may have not have enough to feed the rest.  Five chicks is a lot to take care of.  It may be that the parents needs help, especially if the male isn't able to contribute as much as he should (due to not being well).  He may just be tired / exhausted.  Removing the strongest / oldest chicks for handraising may help them out.  If you have never raised chicks, you may want to consult an experienced breeder.  In the absence of that, there are indepth instructions on this website:

Best of luck now! Sibylle