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My Quaker Is 9- Thought He Was A Boy But An Egg Has Appeared In His Cage!

eggs gender behaviour mating

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#1 azabeth

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Posted 22 June 2014 - 09:21 AM

Hi, i'm new here :)

 

I have had my little blue quaker Jack for 9 years- he was a 4 month old baby when i got him, hand-reared by a reputable local breeder. I have had birds for 20 years and thought i was pretty familiar with them! Jack is completely tame and very cuddly- he is bonded with me but will allow others to hold him after a reasonable getting to know you period, although if anyone touches me he goes nuts and attacks them! 

 

Anyway, i have had him 9 years- and acts like other male birds i have had- i have seen him try to mate my hand and the occasional toy plenty of times- and i witnessed him "finish" on a toy one time- which then had to be taken and washed! 

 

For the first time ever he has been sitting at the bottom of his cage over the last couple of weeks but i knew he wasn't sick because i've seen that sick behaviour in other birds before, and Jack was otherwise very active, eating loads etc- i guessed it was hormones but he happily let me handle him as always. Then just now i've gone in and he's sitting on a little white egg!

 

Why would he, well, i guess i mean she! suddenly lay an egg at the age of 9 for the first time! She otherwise seems perfectly happy and let me take the egg and examine it without any fuss and is eating normally. Nothing about our environment or routine has changed- except that the house rabbit got sick a few weeks ago and i thought Jacks unusual behaviour was because of the extra attention the rabbit was getting- he always gets jealous of her anyway. 

 

Anyone know why a blue quaker would suddenly nest and lay for the first time at the age of 9?

 

Many thanks for your help x

 

 



#2 Fig

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Posted 22 June 2014 - 09:29 AM

Birds do that.  I've heard of "boys" suddenly laying an egg well into their teens or later.



#3 Bene_Gesserit

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Posted 22 June 2014 - 03:19 PM

Hi! I have a single girl who laid eggs in her first year with us.  She's never done it since. I honestly can't tell you how or why that year was different.  I do know that if/when they lay it's important to make sure they get extra calcium (forum members here advised that I give boiled egg shells crushed, and that worked great.) I've also read and seen that it's important to leave the eggs with the bird until she tires of them, because otherwise they may continue to lay to 'replace' the missing egg/s. The other good tip that I've read is to give our girls a full 12 hour sleeptime if/when they are hormonal, because that can fool their bodies into thinking it's not prime nesting season.  Good luck, and congratulations on saving the money on DNA testing. biggrin.png


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#4 azabeth

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Posted 22 June 2014 - 04:07 PM

Thanks for the advice- i still can't get over that the boy i've raised for 9 years is really a girl lol- i was told he was sexed when i got him ;) and her favourite thing to say is "good boy Jack jack!"

 

I gave Jack some egg shell as you suggested and it went down a treat :) How long should i leave the eggs with her before taking them away? And should i encourage her out for play/cuddle/bath time like normal or is it better to leave her be- when i put my hand in the cage she cuddles up to my hand and licks me but isn't displaying the usual "want out of the cage" behaviour. 



#5 easttex

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Posted 22 June 2014 - 04:16 PM

I'd leave the eggs until she loses interest. It usually doesn't take all that long. Once she starts wanting to come out of the cage, you'll know. Now is probably not the time for cuddling, but if she wants to come out for bathing or play, you can let her.
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#6 Bene_Gesserit

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Posted 22 June 2014 - 07:59 PM

Just leave the eggs until she seems to stop caring about them.  My QP sat on hers for a week or two, then went back to her usual perch. She still bathed, but she didn't want to come out because she was being protective.







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