Laying eggs without mating is one of the most notable breeding behaviors parrots display in captivity, and this is normal to see. Yet, it could confuse owners if there were no mating that occurred before this event.
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So, Can Parrots Lay Eggs Without Mating?
Yes, female parrots can lay eggs without mating, they even do it without the existence of a male companion. There are multiple reasons for this behavior. However, laying eggs consumes a lot of calcium and could lead to calcium deficiency. So it’s good to discourage laying eggs in parrots.
And in this article, we will know everything regarding this event, what are the risks, why it happens, and how actually you can take advantage of it and make some extra money on the side.
Why Parrots Lay Eggs Without Mating?
If you found a clutch of eggs in your parrot’s cage or stand you have to think first what is the reason for this to happen, despite that it’s a good sign that your bird is in good health. For parrots, laying eggs is a sign that they are mature enough, and they will probably continue laying eggs throughout their lives.
Besides that, it also means that you as an owner are providing the environment, diet, and entertainment for your female parrot. It’s rare to happen without mating, but sometimes female parrots think it’s unnecessary to have a male mate from their own species.
That means the female parrots can perceive their owners as mates, especially if there were so bonded to each other, so they will lay eggs thinking it’s fertilized. This breeding behavior can occur when the owner is so playful with his parrot, especially if the paying includes touches and cuddles in many areas in the parrot’s body.
Playing and cuddling is one factor. The second factor is the perfect environment that your parrots live in, safety, diet, and the weather. These factors contribute toward laying eggs, at least from your bird’s perspective.
The third factor is the breeding season. During the breeding season and with the presence of the previous factors, it’s totally normal for parrots to lay eggs.
Risks of Laying Unfertilized Eggs
If you found out that your female parrot is laying eggs repeatedly, try to prevent this behavior from happening at this rate. It can cause your parrot to suffer from health problems. Laying eggs can consume the female body and the nutrients she gets from her daily rations and it is probably going to lead to malnourishment.
Laying eggs can consume a significant amount of calcium. The lack of this nutrient from your parrot body can lead to serious health problems like egg-binding, meaning that the eggs will get stuck inside your parrot body. Not to mention the other problems related to the heart, bones, muscles, and nerves. Also, mental problems like stress and depression will lead to feather plucking.
If the bird has a shortage of calcium within his body and can not find it in his diet or any other supplements, it will be compensated from the bones, especially in younger birds. Older birds can suffer from seizures, egg binding, and bone fractures. Do not underestimate this, and the lack of calcium could lead to death.
You have two choices when your parrot lays eggs repeatedly. The first one is to make it up for them regarding their dietary requirements. Boiled eggs are a substantial source of calcium. You can also use the commercial food that is specified for breeding as it contains a lot of the needed nutrients that your bird needs.
The second choice is to discourage this behavior. There are multiple ways to do so.
How to Discourage This Behavior
To Discourage this behavior, you should know what was the reason behind it. As I mentioned earlier, If you play and cuddle with your parrot, try to avoid touching her in her body, if this wasn’t the reason and didn’t work and the parrots surprised you with a new clutch of eggs, you can try to put the cage or the stand in a different place.
Put the cage in an exposed area in your house, living room, for example, or any place that gets more exposure to movements from your family members or your other pets. As I mentioned, if the parrot is laying eggs constantly, then it’s mean that the bird feels safe enough to reproduce, and you have to play on this chord.
Changing the cage’s place and changing the humidity and temperature levels are the most helpful to stop this breeding behavior. As with breeding parrots, owners and breeders struggle to succeed, and most times, the reason is that they couldn’t provide the optimum temperature and humidity.
Some experts say you need to change the diet, and for me, I don’t recommend doing so. I prefer changing the place and the surrounding conditions.
How to Benefit From This Situation
The previous methods to discourage this behavior in your female parrot are most likely to succeed and your parrot will stop laying eggs but if you want to let your bird lay eggs as much as she wants, then you are basically missing a big opportunity to gain some extra experience in raising parrots, you are missing extra money as well.
These conditions are hard to imitate, and if you are one of the lucky ones, you can make extra money from breeding your pet parrot and selling the new chicks as young as possible or after you train them. Trained chicks equal higher prices.
The training is as simple as hand-feeding the chick, this way you can sell a tamed and well-socialized parrot. You can take a step farther and train your parrot not to fly away, and come back when called. This kind of training is on-demand, and one course of it can cost the owner up to $6000.
Starting any training from such a young age is easy, both for you as owner or beginner, and for the chick. And if you ask me, I will always encourage any owner to learn how to breed his parrots. This way you can provide for your pet parrot, considering that parrots are still exotic pets, and they still possess all of their wild instinct on them.
So, if you let your pet parrots breed, fly, and socialize. Then you are basically allowing your bird to express the most essential instincts they got. And the benefits are for you as an owner as well. You will gain more experience that will make you able to make some extra money from something you like, and trust me, it is worth it.
So, the choice is up to you. Either by discouraging this behavior or by taking advantage of it to be an owner that can provide his pet parrot with the best conditions in captivity.