Budgie BreedingBefore breeding any species, it is important to learn as much about the animals, their personalities and the best practices to follow for responsible and ethical breeding prior to making the commitment to take on the responsibility.
I hope new members here see this and take note of it. I do feel like a lot of owners get budgies as they are a cheap pet and they think they're going to have a cute little bird talking and sitting on their shoulder in a few weeks and that having babies will mean more tame loveable, squeezable little critters!
It's a shame more people don't research first. I'm so grateful to have found this forum and have used the vast knowledge on here to make sure my budgies have the best care.
Brenda, you aren't kidding. It actually upsets me that people don't think before they do when it comes to topics like this. And the only reason I don't say something, is because I don't want to rock the boat, so to speak.
Deb, you did a great thing by creating this thread. I hope people not only see and read this, but listen to it and put it into practice!!! Reading and understanding is unfortunately only half the battle. Free will in humans or anything really, is something that we obviously cannot control.
Excellent thread, and I do hope that EVERYBIRDIE reads, understands, and put into practice everything here,
for the health and well being of the BUDGIE, not their own satisfaction.
The minute you decide to bring an animal into your home is the same minute you give your life to said animal. Your decisions from there on out should revolve at least somewhat if not completely around, "how will this effect my '___'?" I do this every single time I do anything. Especially with the birds, as fragile as they are.
Thank you for my wonderful signature Deb!!!
RIP Pepper, Peatri, Holly, Mini, and Quarty
One thing that has not been mentioned and that I think is very important is that every bird owner should learn how to use a crop needle regardless of whether they are going to breed or not. This is the most accurate way of medicating any bird as you know for sure they are getting the right dose of medication and not hit or miss with putting medication in water. If you have a bird that is weak and in need of sustenance then you can crop feed them or at the very least give them fluids with electrolytes. Dehydration often kills a bird quicker than the illness they are suffering. I can't count the amount of threads I have read with people having difficulty medicating birds with just a syringe when the bird ends up getting more on its face and not down into its crop.
If you do breed and you have problems sometimes a baby is too weak to be able to eat from a spoon or a syringe, the crop needle will get the food directly into the crop without any effort from the baby and not all over the baby and you and also when used correctly food will not get into the lung and make the problem worse, with the spoon or syringe food can accidentally be aspirated.
A crop needle is nothing to be frightened of. I have done demonstrations at a number of bird clubs and am amazed at the experienced breeders that have no idea of how to use one and are terrified of using a crop needle. They end up relying on someone like me to save their birds or lose their birds because they can't use one. After a few feeds the babies know what it is all about and will take the crop needle down into their crops nearly by themselves.
While I prefer to use a spoon to hand raise babies as I can get the food slightly thicker and don't have to feed as often because the thicker food digests more slowly (enabling more nutrition to be absorbed) I have also found that the crop stretches differently with the spoon over the crop needle. Where with the crop needle the crop stretches more vertically and the spoon it stretches more horizontally and is a more natural way of feeding for the baby. But some babies actually prefer the crop needle for feeding and don't like the spoon at all and do far better when crop fed.
I had to learn how to use a crop needle when I first started hand raising as I had been given a bird that had to have radical trimming of an overgrown bottom mandible of his beak. The beak had to be cauterized and using a spoon or syringe would have damaged the scab that had formed on the beak and the baby would have bled to death because of it. I am so glad that I learned how to use the crop needle, this ability has saved many birds over the 20 odd years that I have been using one.
Thank you for providing that excellent information, Kate.
For those looking to properly use a crop needle, please discuss the matter with your Avian Vet or a trusted experienced breeder.
Ensure you are taught the proper procedure so as not to injure your budgies during the process.
This is a wonderful post and very well put, besides.
It makes me nervous and upset, like it does all of you, that people would consider breeding as some sort of art project and not the months-long commitment of love, care, the need to be on call 24/7 for these chicks and their parents, even, as mentioned, after the chicks are grown.
Oftentimes, sadly, I feel that many individuals think that the value in a budgie is that they are "easy" to breed and inexpensive compared to larger birds.
Of course, this is entirely untrue. Yes, it is harder to breed Amazons and Macaws and Quakers--but does that mean budgies need any less care because of it?
No. Certainly not.
Any animal deserves to have the correct and experienced care during their lives. When you bring a budgie into your home, they become your responsibility. Yours, and yours alone, and your bird deserves for you to tend to it's every need and do your part in researching.
It doesn't matter how "easy" something is to breed. These are not guppies--you can't just put them in a tank and vóila! A few weeks later, babies!
That is not how it works and I would add my voice to the anxious pleading of all of us on behalf of all budgies and their owners out there. Please, please understand that you can't just "breed budgies".
First you must understand them, trust them, care for them, research them, and love them, for the well-being of everyone involved.
and Princess Mallorn!
Thank you to Deb for her wonderful Faery magic
Actually it is not really any harder to breed Amazons etc. it is just that it takes a lot longer for them to reach breeding maturity and then they only usually have one clutch per year, where the smaller birds can breed much more regularly and reach breeding maturity at a younger age, but then their lifespan is a lot smaller than a Macaw. With a Macaw it can take up to 15 years for them to reach breeding maturity. Even my Sulphur Crested Cockatoos are not at breeding age until they are at least 4 to 5 years old for the male and 5 to 6 for the female, they only breed once a year with a clutch size of 2 to 3 chicks. And they can feasibly live to be 100. I knew one that was 94 and had been through 3 generations of the same family.
Actually it is not really any harder to breed Amazons etc.
I agree, I think that people consider them harder because they require more space, they are more expensive, and as you said, if you get a larger parrot as a chick you'd have to wait for a long time before you could breed them.
and Princess Mallorn!
Thank you to Deb for her wonderful Faery magic
Thank you to all who have posted about the importance of learning as much as possible about budgies, their health, care and well-being before considering if accepting the responsibility and commitment necessary for breeding.
You guys are great!
I truly hope all who read this thread will carefully consider the importance of every life brought under their care.
My sincere wish is for everybudgie to be given a safe and loving home with an owner who provides everything possible to offer them a long and happy life!
I totally agree with the message here. I wanted to add that, being rather naive when I first acquired my budgies, I ended up with eggs and raised 2 healthy chicks with the help and support of this forum. It was an eye opener for me, that's for sure. The result are two wonderful adult babies and..... I have a hen with chronic egg laying issues. It breaks my heart to think of people subjecting birds or any pet to breeding for 'fun'. If I had pursued breeding my hen, I believe she would be dead by now.
And (I'm on a roll here), what do people do with the offspring? It's not like there is an unlimited market for chicks from uneducated breeders. The whole idea is highly unethical to me. OK... I'm climbing down from that soapbox. Long story short... I'm really glad Deborah posted this and so many knowledgeable and caring owners have added to the conversation.