my lady gouldian is eating her own eggs. How to stop this bad habit

I have found eggs at the bottom of the cage. This morning I saw an egg in the nest. When I came back from work, the egg is gone. What can I do to stop this bad habit?

Were you able to find the egg that disappeared? Was it thrown out also or buried in the nest? If the pair are very young birds, they may be over stressed and tossing out eggs, not actually eating them? If that is the case try to cover part of their cage to give them additional peace and quiet. Don't bring strangers or other pets near the cage and especially avoid disturbing the nest box as much as possible. Watch and see if their behavior changes. If they are actually eating the egg shells, increase their options for obtaining more calcium. Add a cuttle bone and a mineral block to the cage if the birds don't already have them and give them chicken egg shells. After cooking hard boil eggs, (from free range chickens), for making egg food, put the egg shells back into water and boil them for 15 minutes to sterilize them or microwave the wet shells for two to three minutes. Either crush up the shells or just put a shell half on the floor of the cage and see what the birds do. If the hen does need additional calcium, she will eat the shells you provide eagerly. It is however, perfectly normal for the pair to eat the egg shells after the chicks have hatched so don't be surprised when that happens. If you have time, let me know if these ideas help?
Best wishes, Jeanie

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Oct 04, 2010
My hen stopped eating her eggs
by: Angelin

Dear Jeanie,

I follow your instructions and the hen stopped eating the eggs. I think she needed calcium. there are 3 eggs on the nest. However this morning the crook was getting out the nest I went to check and the eggs were scattered I put them together with a spoon. During the day they were taking turns in the nest but now (8:39 PM) both of them are sleeping on a perch. Is this normal behavior? Should I get the crook out of the cage?

Usually the hen will lay 1 egg each morning until she has laid her full clutch of 4-6 eggs. Neither bird will start sitting on the eggs until they have a full clutch. Then the hen will stay the night in the nest. The parents may abandon the eggs if they are too frequently disturbed. I suggest waiting until the tenth day to check the eggs again. Use a penlight flashlight to candle the eggs in the nest. If they are fertile, by that time, you will be able to see red blood vessels inside the eggs. Try not to disturb them again until you can hear the chicks chirping. Give the pair as much privacy as you can at this time. Good luck, Jeanie

Sometimes we just have to wait things out. I would leave the nest box alone for a couple of weeks and just watch what the birds do. The male will help the female raise the chicks so don't take him out unless they are fighting. Can you cover part of the cage to give them more privacy? If you can try it. They may just be fearful from all directions and stressed. If these are the first eggs that have not been eaten, be patient. It may take a little longer for success. Good Luck, Jeanie

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