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Thread: My male cockatiel chases my female cockatiel out of the nest box. HELP

  1. #1
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    My male cockatiel chases my female cockatiel out of the nest box. HELP

    Ok well, I have these 3 cockatiels a baby one about 10 weeks old that i bought from a breeder and 1 breeding pair of cockatiels. The breeding pair i got from someone who was moving away. So she gave me a very large cage and 1 pair of cockatiels that were proven Breeders and as she promised they started mating the second day i got them. The pair was doing fine until i bought a nest box for them and the male as a normal behavior checked it out first like their suppose to do. Except after a few days he became very aggressive over the nest box and declared it his. The female cockatiel is going to lay her eggs any day now because i can tell by her droppings being very big and runny that the eggs are soon to be due. She runs into the nest box and the male will chase her out as soon she gets in there. He never did any real damage to her maybe just few warning nips to make her move away from the nest box. I did my research and nothing seemed to be coming up for the problem i have. So can someone please help me with this problem, or explain to me why this is happening.

    Details: The female has not laid her eggs yet, but insists in laying them in the nest box. The pair are 1-2 years in age no more then 2.5 years. This couple had a clutch before with the previous owner that had them at that time. The pair never had a wooden nest box before. Before the nest box the female would just lay her eggs any where or in a cardboard box that the previous owner would set down for them. I tried removing the male seeing if that would make a difference, thinking that maybe they are a bondage pair not a bonded pair, But when i did the female flipped out and screamed the whole time he was gone. The younger bird is not in the same cage with the breeding pair. There is white shredded paper in the nest box, could the white paper possibly look like eggs to the male? and thats why he acting aggressive? This male Aggression has been lasting a little over a week now, Maybe i should just wait it out? The breeding pair are not tame but were at one point.

    P.S I am an experienced Breeder of small animal like cat, bunnies, rats, mice, fish and i been doing it all my life. I do extensive research before i ever consider breeding any my animals, but this is the first time i ever tried breeding birds and its not going according to plan nor does it seem like i can find the answer to my problem from any informational site or books.

    Your help would be very much Appreciated Thank you

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    Re: My male cockatiel chases my female cockatiel out of the nest box. HELP

    Hi! Katie and welcome to the community!! I do know that budgies/parakeets nest in the box without any nesting materials whatsoever. The female chips out a little space in the middle circle of the nestbox just enough to make herself comfortable to nest. And she will not allow the male into the box until the first chick hatches. She comes out of the box about 2-3 times a day for food and water. The male just sits on the perch or plays with his toys during the nesting process. I am not familiar with tiel breeding, although I do have a tiel. But here are some of my thoughts. It might be worth a try for you to remove the nesting material you put in the box and see what might happen. Maybe they prefer a box without any papers, etc. in it. And, it is possible, that because she laid eggs in a little cardboard box before, the male thinks that is the way they have to be this time around. You might also try taking the nestbox out of the cage and putting in a small cardboard box. Maybe you could find some way to hang the cardboard box in the cage as long as it is strong enough cardboard that it won't break due to the weight of both birds and the eggs. Otherwise you will need to move the box when you are cleaning the cage floor if you place the box on the floor. Cockatiels are very intelligent birds, and I'm thinking that the male is reverting back to the cardboard box. It is good that you have the new little baby in a separate cage away from them. It is not unusual for a pair to attack a little baby bird that is not there bird, or in some cases it is their baby, because it will be a distraction to their mating behavior right now.

    I hope this information is of help to you, and I look forward to hearing more about your journey with this pair. We LOVE pics here, so sometime when things settle down abit, please feel free to post some pics. Wishing you a good resolution for this pair of tiels to have a good conclusion to their nesting behavior.
    Last edited by maxollie; 09-07-2012 at 11:51 AM.

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    Re: My male cockatiel chases my female cockatiel out of the nest box. HELP

    i removed the paper out of the nest box nothing in there now, the male kinda lets her in for a few minuts or so but at least it getting better. i hope to only have one pair of babys to raise and hand feed my self. so i can keep my favorit and give away the rest to nice loving homes

    thank you Ellen for helping it seems like it working

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    Re: My male cockatiel chases my female cockatiel out of the nest box. HELP

    Have you looked at this site.
    http://www.cockatielcottage.net/

    Is it possible for you to offer more than one nest box? It could be that he does not like this one, so giving them a choice might make a difference.
    With bedding whatever you use it has to be enough to make sure the babies have something to push against. This stops splayed legs. You may find to start with your tiels throw a lot of the nest material out. Just keep putting it back in.
    Whatever you use it should not be dusty, and you may want to change it now and then as the mess builds up. But only if they let you. Both birds will be very protective of the nest and young. They have to trust you or they may abandon the nest.
    You should also set up some things in case you have to step in and take over feeding.

    The other thing you may find by lifting the young early, is that they go back into laying cycle. In which case you may want to think about dummy eggs or remove the nest box as soon as you lift the young.
    once Tiels start laying it can become hard to stop them. And then the female can succumb to egg laying issues.


    Maxollie: Quote Maybe they prefer a box without any papers. Quote
    Empty nest box is the main cause of splayed legs, as the young need to be able to push against something for the legs to move to underneath them. I am sure that is what is said to happen, but cannot locate details for you. I have seen this myself at least twice, and was given that explanation.
    This is not so much of a problem if there are a lot of babies in a nest box. As they push against each other. but if there is a lot of room and no bedding you could well see this happen.
    Last edited by clawnz; 09-08-2012 at 06:25 PM.
    R.I.P my little ones.

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    Re: My male cockatiel chases my female cockatiel out of the nest box. HELP

    You are welcome, Katie! Please keep us posted on how things are going. I'll stop by this thread on occasion to see how you are getting along. I agree with Clive about the website called "Cockatiel Cottage". It has tons of information about tiels, and also lots of info about breeding, feeding the right foods especially when breeding, and it also has info about the babies. There is some good information here in the library I believe, and if you just google "breeding cockatiels", you will most likely get lots of websites to visit. And Clive is very experienced in raising tiels, much more than I am so do consider his info about the splayed legs as valuable information. My remarks were about budgies/parakeets nesting, and I've never had any tiels nest. That is one of the greatest things about Tailfeathers, many different people stop by and give great information to posters. When you visit cockatiel cottage check out the nestbox section and see what they say about putting nesting material in the box. At the very least, right now things are going a little better for you. That is a plus!

    I am a testimony to a single hen tiel who is a chronic egg layer. I brought her home with me a year ago the 3rd of June. I don't have any other tiels in my home, only one male budgie in a separate cage. On the 3rd of September, a year ago, Ollie scared me one afternoon. I found her in the corner of the cage on the floor. I thought something had happened to her. I gently lifted her up off the floor and out popped the first egg. Since that first clutch of 4 eggs, Ollie has laid eggs every month except two, and each time it is 4 eggs. I feed her lots of healthy foods, seeds, pellets, lots of calcium, and cuttle bone. So, as you can see, with or without a mate, as Clive said, when hens start to lay eggs there is no stopping them. You can get what they call lupron shots for them which act just like a birth control pill, but I am afraid of giving my Ollie the shots. You can also get a birdy hysterectomy, but I think that is danger also. I have even tried the plastic eggs with Ollie, exchanging a real one for the plastic, and Ollie loves to lay eggs and nest so much, she takes to the plastic eggs just like real ones, in fact, I think she is more obsessive of the plastic ones. Go figure!! (lol) Hope this info will be of help to you!
    Last edited by maxollie; 09-08-2012 at 07:21 PM.

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    Re: My male cockatiel chases my female cockatiel out of the nest box. HELP

    Thank you Maxollie. I wish I was a power house of information, but only talk about what I have seen.
    I would not wish what I went through with my egg factory on any one. That was one of the reasons it was so well documented on another forum.
    There is an option of implants to stop them laying, but I do not want to go there if at all possible.
    After seeing one of my girls die on the operating table! No Thanks! But if Tink goes back to being eggy it may be her only option, and I will have to weigh the odds lose her to egg complications or an operation.
    When you tried the dummy eggs, did you think about flooding her, and I do mean flooding. i knocked Cindy out of egg mode by putting 13eggs under her, her body must of decided enough was enough and she stopped for that season.
    You may not of seen my old thread on some of the forums about Roxy and how she laid off my shoulder or wherever else she was when an egg popped out. Soft shell and all. I had her put on lupron so I had a chance of getting her condition up. This only stopped her for three months. A year later and I lost her to a prolapse.

    I think the issue with nest boxes and splayed legs is due to empty flat bottom boxes. So may not apply to a bowl. And if caught early the legs can be taped together and sorted that way. I have seen Lyn do this and it worked well enough for the bird to cope with life.
    R.I.P my little ones.

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