Breeding love birds

Lovebirds are probably the easiest of all cage birds for the novice to breed and rear. They can be breed in cages, or in an avary-based colony. Cage breeding will require a cage of a minimum size of 60cm long by 40cm height by 30 cm deep. If the next box or pot is to be placed inside the cage other than on the floor, the cage length should be proportionately greater.

One of the big advantages of cage breeding is that it allows its owner to be selective about breeding partnership. The free ranging colony budgie picks its own mate from the selection available. With cage breeding very little squabbling or fighting takes place, so there is less risk that either parent stock birds or chicks will be damaged and possibly lost in this way. Usually birds kept indoors with warm light, bird room will begin to come into breeding condition earlier than those exposed to all weather in an out door enclosure. The birds themselves will indicate that they are ready to breed by courting behavior. The males & females will pair of to spend the bulk of their time in each other’s company, with the cock feeding the hen at regular intervals.

The ceres (the area immediately above the upper beak) will become intense in colour, those of the cock birds being brighter than usual blue, and those often hens a really rich brown shade. Hens will be chewing at all the woodwork they can find. Even in the natural habitat, lovebirds do not make conventional nests for their young. In captivity they will require to be supplied with nest box or a pot which should be hanged and with side hole, so that the birds can enter. Many breeders are using disposable cardboard boxes that are burned at the end.

The base of the next box should have a concave depression into which the hen will place her eggs. Some coarse sawdust sprinkled on this depression prevents eggs and chicks becoming fould.

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