I'm new to the forum and group, as well as just had my first eggs hatch last week. I have three babies and two eggs left. First baby hatched May 24th. My question is I have not been able to catch them awake! Leila (the mom) has been with me for many years and she has let me 'peek'. I've limited peeks to every few days. The first two are growing nicely. The breeder I bought my male from has given me very good advice and told me I can call him any time. I plan to handfeed within 2-3 weeks. This is the second week after hatching and I want to know if someone can tell me how long it takes before they are not sleeping all the time. I guess I'll find out soon! Likely when mom and pop are in the nest box, they are feeding and I don't want to disturb them. If everything is quiet, I'm assuming they are sitting on the eggs and keeping the babies warm. Just curious when the birds start becoming more active. Especially if I'm pulling them in two more weeks. This is my first time with a successful clutch. I had a blue visual that was paired with Leila for about five years. They were not successful breeding. I bought a new male in Feburary, and immediately their first clutch produced. All help is welcomed. Thanks much. Joyce Leila.JPG 19.52KB 0 downloads
Posted 02 June 2014 - 10:23 PM
Hi and welcome to the forum!
Unfortunately I can't help you, as I don't know a thing about raising babies. Hopefully someone will be along shortly; I just wanted to say hi!
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Posted 03 June 2014 - 07:19 AM
It's normal to see very little nest activity outside of feeding times. It takes a whole lot of energy to grow as rapidly as baby birds do and to develop feathers, as well. Eat, sleep, and poop is about it for baby birds, until it gets closer to fledging time, which I think for Quakers is around six weeks. An alert baby bird is most likely a hungry baby bird.
If these were wild birds, I would say there is very little chance that those last two eggs would hatch at this point, or that they would survive if they did. It's just too hard for a much smaller sibling to compete for the parents' attention. You can candle the eggs to see if there are chicks in there. If they do hatch, I would keep a close eye on them at feeding times, and think about intervening if they seem to be getting left out.
Good luck with them. I would bet that they are really, really cute!
Posted 05 June 2014 - 08:17 AM
Thank you for your advice Easttex, this is what I thought. As of today, June 5, 2014 there are two babies that seem to be growing very well, and one that is very small, and the two eggs. I watched a video on YouTube on unhatched eggs. The woman said she usually leaves them in the box a week after they would normally hatch just to make sure.
The first hatched egg date was May 24, 2014 so I think I've given them enough time. What confuses me most is breeders say they pull the babies at two weeks, when their eyes open, I seemed to 'think' they would be more active at that time. They are so cute! I'm lucky to have two out of six eggs on their very first clutch. I'll keep you informed as to the progress.
Kiwi and Leila are turning out to be good parents. They have let me peek - what I've done is talk to Kiwi and Leila, tell them 'you're such good birdies', 'Leila (and Kiwi) good boy/girl', 'Look at your babies, you're so good', etc. I keep talking until they are calm, and ask for permission to peek. Leila looks at me so intently, then I take a little peek to observe what' going on inside the box.
Hopefully next time I write, I'll be telling you about pulling the babies from the next box. All advice is welcome. And as I learn, I'll share my success (or failures) with you.
Posted 05 June 2014 - 01:35 PM
It could be that the babies are more active when they are taken from the parents. They're probably kept hungrier when being hand fed. Not that they are necessarily starved, but putting them on a schedule of feeding 4 times per day, ensuring the crop is full, is not how the parents handle feeding. They feed them pretty steadily throughout the day, not so much at one time.
I hope your littlest one starts to thrive. Are you going to let it stay with Kiwi and Leila longer? I'm looking forward to reading about how everyone does.
Posted 05 June 2014 - 04:52 PM
Easttex, do you think I should leave the little one with Leila & Kiwi longer than 2-3 weeks? I wasn't aware that the parents are feeding them all day long. Maybe if I leave the little guy/gal with the parents, they will pay more attention to this one and feed more often. Thanks for bringing this to my attention.
Posted 05 June 2014 - 06:20 PM
I honestly don't know if it would be better for it to remain with its siblings or to stay with the parents longer. Wild birds are just about always better off with the parents, but I don't want to steer you wrong in what is a different situation. It might actually be better off with you ensuring it gets adequately fed on a schedule. Your breeder should be able to give you better advice on that. Or maybe someone on the board has some experience with this? I'll post again if I come up with any relevant research.
Posted 06 June 2014 - 10:08 AM
Thank you EastTex, I have another week to prepare for hand feeding. Will call my breeder friend, and visit a couple of friends I know that raise birds. I have to get supplies, and be ready to pull next Saturday (not tomorrow). One question you can likely help me out with - I've read baby birds need warmth and humidity. If I bring them inside the house, I can put them in the warmest room, but air conditioning takes humidity out of the air. Where do your keep your babies? Outside or inside? Just curious. Thank so much for staying in touch with me. Maybe I can check some other forum comments on hand feeding basics. Have a nice weekend.
Posted 06 June 2014 - 02:35 PM
Inside. I'm no expert, by any means, but do work with someone who is a licensed bird rehabber (currently raising 45 or so baby birds of various species by herself - she's a busy woman!) Hers are all inside, kept inside aquariums, mostly. They're in a room that she keeps warmer and moister just with window control. Warmth and humidity are especially important before they are fully feathered. It happens pretty naturally when they are crammed into the nest together. I live in a very humid part of the country (30 miles or so to the Louisiana border), and even a/c doesn't dry us out too badly, so I've never worried too much about that. If it was me, and I was looking to continue breeding and taking them from the parents that early, I would think about buying or making a brooder that allows you to control temp and humidity.
I'm looking forward to learning more as you go along. Thanks for sharing your experience with it.
Posted 07 June 2014 - 10:18 AM
Easttex, you are so nice! I really appreciate your advice. I'm going to meet with a bird breeder at noon today. She's going to show me how to hand feed. She has a store here in Florida where I live and sells all kinds of exotic birds. I've learned a lot over the last week reading and talking to people. Just like where you live, in Florida humidity is something we deal with big time. I figured my bedroom is the warmest room in the house as it gets full sun morning and afternoon. The lady I'm meeting with gave me great advice about what to buy. She said I can use a plastic container, put a heating pad underneath, place clean white towels in the bottom and paper towels on top. Get a plastic bowl (large enough for the birds to snuggle in) put it in the container lined with paper towels, put a regular outdoor type thermometer on the bottom of the container to get the temp around 90-95 degrees. She has the syringes, formula at her shop so I think I'll be good to go. I have until next Saturday to finish all preperations and feel much more comfortable now. I have to buy a camera - can you believe my dream has come true and I have no camera to take pictures?
I should be prepared to hand feed, and ready for the next eggs that should be laid immediately after I pull these babies. I've read this is what happens. This time, I want to take pictures at various stages of growth, with a timeline from egg to hatch, hand feeding until grown.
Just possibly I can be a contributor to helping other people who are novice bird breeders. I'm one of those obsessive compulsive people that want to do everything PERFECT!
Thanks again for your help Easttex. You've been an inspiration for me to keep learning.
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