How Long Before I See Cockatiel Eggs?
It is absolutely amazing how soon your cockatiel hen can produce those cockatiel eggs once a nesting box is provided.
In fact, the first egg can be laid in as short a time as three days, although four days is usually more accurate.
Unfortunately, not all cockatiels are built the same and are not all this speedy. The average time for cockatiel eggs to start popping out is usually weeks instead of days.
Before the hen produces any cockatiel eggs, she usually sleeps outside the nesting box. Then eventually one evening she may slink inside the box and spend the night inside it, and at the time that she spends her first night, is usually when she will lay her first egg.
How Many Eggs Will She Lay?
The usual clutch will consist of about five eggs, and the interval between each egg is a little less than two days.
While the hen is busy producing cockatiel eggs, she will spend almost all her time inside the box. The male may join her, but generally, he will sit close to the box.
Who Sits On The Cockatiel Eggs?
Most mail cockatiels share the incubation and brooding of the young. The number of eggs laid by the hen can be fairly accurately guessed by counting how many days it takes the male to begin to incubate inside the box when the hen comes out.
The occasional hen will take all the incubation duties upon herself, but this is rare because most male cockatiels will insist on doing their duty.
A cockatiel about to take over the incubation appears to do so without any “exchange ceremony” like other types of birds do. The one will just sit down next to the other incubating bird.
This is one of the few times that adult cockatiels sit physically touching. It may well be this natural dislike of close contact that makes the previously brooding bird leave the nest as the other enters.
Sometimes they both incubate together and especially towards the end of the incubation when the eggs have started to hatch.
Normally the male will incubate for most of the day and the hen at night. This is exactly the same pattern followed by pigeons and doves.
What Do Cockatiel Eggs Look Like?
Cockatiel eggs, like the eggs of all parrots, are white and can be any shape from almost spherical to long and pointed, but are usually fat-egg shaped. They weigh about 6.5 grams which are about a thirteenth of the weight of the laying hen cockatiel.
In the picture below, the cockatiel eggs are compared in size to a chicken egg.
What Is The Normal Incubation Time?
The norm is usually about nineteen days, but cold weather and indifferent incubation can lengthen the time to hatching in excess of this.
The chicks will hatch in the sequence in which the eggs were laid at roughly two-day intervals.
However, incubation seldom starts with the first egg, and not always until three or four have been laid.
Quite often the first group hatch almost simultaneously.
Strangely for parrots, cockatiels sometimes remove parts of the eggshells for these bits will often be found at the bottom of the cage or flight.