Parrots can make excellent companions, but they are a lot of work.
And if one parrot is a lot of work, that means that two parrots are even more work, and breeding parrot babies is, well, a ton of work.
With that being said, some people love doing it.
You might decide to breed your parrots for several reasons.
Maybe you love your parrot so much that you want to keep one of their offspring.
Or maybe you want to breed parrots to sell and make money.
Whatever the reason, you should do your research before you decide to breed.
This leads us to the question – are parrots easy to breed?
The answer to this question is no, parrots are not easy to breed. Breeding takes a great deal of time, commitment, money, and knowledge. With that being said, for the right person, breeding parrots can be extremely rewarding.
Today we’ll talk more in-depth about breeding parrots, answering common breeding questions like:
What will you need to breed a parrot?
How do you breed a parrot?
What to expect during breeding season?
Is breeding a good idea from me?
And so much more.
So let’s not waste another minute!
Table of Contents
- 1 What will you need to breed a parrot?
- 2 How do you breed Parrots?
- 3 What can go wrong?
- 4 Is breeding right for you?
What will you need to breed a parrot?
Okay, before we talk about exactly how to go about breeding a parrot, let’s first talk about the supplies that you will need:
Breeding cages, sometimes referred to as a double bird cage or divided bird cage, are essentially two cages that are side-by-side each other with a mid-section that can be removed.
Each half of the cage provides all of the essentials for the parrot that it holds – food, water, toys, etc.
The only difference between this and a normal cage is that you can remove the centerpiece when breeding season arrives, allowing the parrots to mate with one another.
During the rest of the year the parrots can live simultaneously, getting to know one another, and allowing you to see if they will make compatible mates.
Breeding boxes are attached to the side of the breeding cage and are where a female parrot can go to lay her eggs.
These boxes are generally dark and enclosed with a small window that allows you to look in to see what’s going on inside.
Once you have a fertilized egg you have two options; you can let the mother incubate the egg herself or you can purchase an incubator .
If you want the mother to be involved in raising the chicks after they are born, it’s best to let her do the incubating.
But if you plan on raising and selling the parrot, you may want to invest in an incubator.
Incubators may also be necessary if the female parrot becomes ill for any reason.
Incubators are designed to mimic the incubation process of parrots, providing heat to the egg and rotating slowly so that the heat is evenly dispersed.
If the parents are not raising the baby chicks, you will also need to invest in a brooder.
This is where the chick goes after it has hatched out of the egg.
The brooder will provide the heat and humidity that the baby chick needs to thrive until they get strong enough to regulate their own heat.
Food, nutrition, and supplements
If you are going to be raising baby chicks, it’s recommended that you purchase a specialized bird feed designed for breeding.
How do you breed Parrots?
Step 1: Select your parrots
The first step to breeding parrots, obviously, is selecting the type of parrot you would like to breed.
From there, you will need to learn about the breeding specifications of that particular species.
Each species of parrot is slightly different in their breeding needs.
For example, different species of parrot become sexually mature at different ages.
With that being said, most species mature between 1-4 years of age.
Some species of parrot are also easier to breed than others.
Among these are budgies, parakeets, lovebirds, cockatiels, and green-cheeked conures.
Because there are so many different species of parrot it would be difficult to list the breeding needs of them all, but a little research can go a long way.
You’ll also want to give each of your parrots a health check to ensure that they are healthy before breeding them.
Step 2: Make sure your parrots are compatible
Just as not all people are compatible with one another, nor are all parrots.
Before you place the two in a cage to mate together, you’ll want to make sure that they are compatible.
It may take a year or two to get the parrots fully acquainted with one another, so the younger you can introduce them, the better off you will be.
Also remember that parrots are a monogamous species.
This means that they tend to mate with one other parrot for life.
In return, if you have already mated one male and one female, you probably won’t have much luck remating them with another parrot of the opposite sex in the future – so select your mates wisely.
Step 3: Purchase your supplies and equipment (listed above)
Make sure you get your supplies and equipment, like the cages, the boxes, etc as we have already mentioned.
Step 4: Watch for signs of breeding season
Breeding season for parrots is typically in the beginning of spring when the weather is starting to change.
If it’s starting to get warmer and you can hear the birds singing outside, there’s a good chance mating season is upon you.
During this time, start watching for signs that your parrot’s are ready to mate.
Your male parrot may do a special dance for the female, or they may start to fluff their feathers to make themselves look larger and more attractive.
Some parrots may also become moody and hormonal during this time, and may start to bite, scream, or act in ways that they would not otherwise act. (Don’t worry, this behavior will end when mating season ends).
Watching for these signs is important because the mating season for parrots is short.
You only have a 1-2 week window to mate your parrots before breeding season is over – and then you may have to wait another year to try again.
Step 5: Care for the egg
If your parrots have successfully mated and your female has laid a fertilized egg (or several fertilized eggs), then comes time to care for the egg.
For this you can allow the parents to care for the egg in their breeding box, or you can move the egg into an incubator and care for it yourself.
The entire incubation process takes between 24-28 days, after which you should have yourself a little parrot chick to care for!
What can go wrong?
Unfortunately, breeding sounds a lot easier than it actually is, and there are several things that can go wrong during the breeding process.
These can include, but are not limited to:
Egg binding as a result of calcium deficiency in the mother
The father attacking the mother or the eggs
The father becoming so stressed out by the chicks that he can become ill
Breeding can lead to stress and aggression for the parents
If the temperature is not right, the parrots will not breed.
Nesting areas need to be kept warm, but the ideal temperature will differ from species to species.
The parrots don’t cohabitate well or are not compatible
In return, you need to do your diligence before breeding.
Each species has different breeding recommendations that you should follow for the best results.
Is breeding right for you?
Here are some questions that you need to ask yourself to help you determine whether you would make a good breeder:
Do I have enough space to breed?
Does my zoning area allow for breeding?
Am I far enough away from neighbors that they will not be bothered by the added noise?
Am I willing to risk the relationship I have with my parrot? (after breeding, your parrot’s focus will be on their young and your relationship may take a backseat)
Do I have the time to dedicate to breeding?
Am I in a financial situation to be able to purchase all of the proper supplies? Can I afford to feed baby chicks?
Do I have the knowledge to properly breed parrots?
If you answered yes to all of these questions, breeding could be an option for you.
If you have not bred parrots before, it’s advised that you speak to a professional.
The more research you do, the more prepared you can be to raise happy and healthy baby chicks.