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#168868 - 07/01/08 04:13 PM Re: Egg laying?? [Re: Ketrel]  
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A good alternative to boiling the eggs is blowing them out and adding plaster of paris. We use to do it at the zoo. It's really easy and quick. All you need is a piece of foam rubber or pillow and a sharp round tipped tool. The tool would depend on the egg. Ice picks, leather needles, skewer etc.. Place the egg upright in the foam with the larger end up and thinner end down. Place point in center at top and very gently tap it with a small hammer. Once the point enters the egg and you have a hole pull the pointed tool out. Shake the egg over the sink/trash with hole side down to get the egg to come out. Once it starts you can add a little water and shake some more. This will help to thin out the eggyolk to come out easier. Rinse thoroughly when emptied. Mix a thin plaster of paris mix and slowly pour into the hole. When filled to the top set the egg in the foam again and allow to dry and harden. You now have an egg that you can use multiple times if needed. Nancy


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#168870 - 07/01/08 04:32 PM Re: Egg laying?? [Re: BE2Cassie]  
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How large must the hole be you make with the tool?


Abe
#168871 - 07/01/08 04:38 PM Re: Egg laying?? [Re: Ketrel]  
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Depends on the size of the egg. At least an eight of an inch otherwise you'll have a devil of a time trying to get the plaster in it. If you can go a little larger without breaking the egg the easier it is. As you do more eggs over time you'll get the hang of it. Try it on some chicken eggs. Get the medium sized eggs to start. You'll break a few along the way. If the hole is too large and you haven't broken or cracked the egg you can still fill it.
Also if you have a hand soap dispenser that is on the small size you can use the pump to pump out the egg. Just be sure to shake it good and add a little water. The pump will get clogged with yolk but if you keep water next to you just put the pump in the water and pump out the yolk to clean inside the tube. Nancy


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#168872 - 07/01/08 04:41 PM Re: Egg laying?? [Re: Ketrel]  
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Discouraging Breeding Behavior in Pet Birds by Hilary S. Stern, DVM

This is a very informative article, but as Nancy said, sometimes no matter how much we discourage the behavior and do everything right, egg production still occurs. As my AV says "Captive birds don't always follow the rules". crazy




Birds are angels who lift us up when our own wings forget how to fly.

"Never doubt that a small group of thoughtful committed citizens can change the world - indeed it is the only thing that ever has!" ~~~ Margaret Meade ~~~

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#168873 - 07/01/08 04:58 PM Re: Egg laying?? [Re: EchosMom]  
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Great idea Nancy. We used to do that when we were kids at Easter with chicken eggs.


John
Another 24 hours down. Only a lifetime to go. God speed! ~AngiesArk~ laugh
#168879 - 07/01/08 05:49 PM Re: Egg laying?? [Re: TiKa's Dad]  
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I have a few eggs of different species here at the house that I kept for keepsakes. Emu, Ostrich and swan. They are very pretty.
Nancy


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#168886 - 07/01/08 07:18 PM Re: Egg laying?? [Re: BE2Cassie]  
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I just noticed Javo One's post.. I hope she can make it back on and post what she was going to. I am soaking up all I can =) and bookmarking!


***Treat others how you yourself expect to be treated***
#168896 - 07/01/08 08:10 PM Re: Egg laying?? [Re: Razzle'sMommy]  
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Java's on Hawaii time (lucky duck-LOL!) so it's still early there. Rest assured she'll be back to share - her knowledge is
phenomenal.


Birds are angels who lift us up when our own wings forget how to fly.

"Never doubt that a small group of thoughtful committed citizens can change the world - indeed it is the only thing that ever has!" ~~~ Margaret Meade ~~~

Noelle, A Rehabilitation in Progress
#168898 - 07/01/08 08:14 PM Re: Egg laying?? [Re: Razzle'sMommy]  
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Aloha Kakahiaka (good morning), I have given up coffee and cigarettes and it's a bit early for me still, so forgive if I repeated anything anyone has already contributed. Mind you, the following is based on experience and should always be shared with your avian vet for his/her opinion.

Here is my standard egg stuff: (LONG)

Lone hens may or may not lay eggs. They may lay dormant for years and then just when you were thinking you had a male, out pops an egg. The egg laying may repeat it self in cycles, or, if you are lucky, may not happen again for years if at all.

Littler birds lay eggs more frequently and in larger clutches. Finches lay every day around 6 eggs, lovebirds, budgies and cockatiels every other day around 6 eggs. Cockatoos 1 - 3 eggs around every 2-3 days with the except of the black palm cockatoo which typically only lays one egg per clutch. You can expect the eggs to be laid at around the same time of day.

Echosmom posted an excellent article about preventive laying so I won't go into that.

Alright. So your hen has laid an egg. The most important thing is nutrition. Make sure her diet is balanced and includes a variety of calcium, not just cuttlebone. Crushed oyster shell, mineral block, dark leafy greens such as kale, swiss chard are all excellent. No spinach at this time, it interferes with the absorption of calcium. Also a bit of protein in the form of chopped boiled egg is good during this time.

Do not remove the egg once laid, or your bird will attempt to replace it over and over and may endanger her health. It takes lots of energy to build an egg. Let her sit on them until she tires of them. This could take a month. And she will be protective of the eggs. Leave her alone. She will also save up her poops until she comes out infrequently to eat. These will be big, nasty and smelly. Don't be alarmed.

There are varied methods for ensuring the egg is not fertile. This is the method I use. I mark the eggs by number and when/if a subsequent egg is laid, I put the first in the frig for 24 hours. Then do the same with the rest of the eggs. If you do this quickly, the embryo will not have formed. Of course, if you have a hen without a mate, there is no need to do this. You can also put the eggs in boiled water, but I have had breakage using this method.

The best thing to do, is if you can find a source for ceramic fake eggs, replace the hen's eggs with these. Ceramic are the best because they hold the body heat in, simulating real eggs.

Let's discuss the deep dark downside of egg laying, and every hens owner's biggest fear. Egg binding.

Egg binding can occur in hens who are first time layers or who have laid many clutches. It's not predictable. The one tool you have is OBSERVATION. You must know your hen's body and habits. If you notice she has been hormonal - scratching around and seeking dark place, tearing up paper or making blankets into piles; if you notice she is poochy down in the lower abdominal area, you may be able to palpate EXTREMELY GENTLY and feel for an egg. If you feel one, and it is not laid within 36-48 hours, take her to your vet immediately.

Sometimes a simple calcium shot will induce her to lay. If not, you and your vet will have to discuss other options, more likely of which lead to surgical removal of the egg and perhaps a salpingectomy (removal of the oviduct).

The success rate of surgery on cockatoos is higher than with the smaller birds. However, we all know, surgery of any kind is risky.

The reason egg binding IS life threatening is that, should the egg break internally for any reason, or if the egg has not formed a hard shell, the contents of the egg will, in simple terms, rot. And this leads to blood poisoning and certain death if not treated.

Let's back up a bit. Once the eggs/s are laid, examine them for any blood on the shell. There shouldn't be any. Also examine the hen's cloaca. It should be intact and not red or swollen. Another condition which also requires immediate avian vet attention is what's called a prolapsed cloaca. With the pushing of the egg, the hen may have pushed her organs out. The surgery for this may be as simple as pushing it back in. Or may require a temporary purse string stitch around the cloaca until the muscles retract enough to keep it in.

Also ensure that the egg is hard shelled. A soft shelled egg is NOT good. This may mean that subsequent eggs may not be able to be passed and it's a pretty sure bet you may have problems with egg binding.

Treatment for incessant layers may include Lupron. This has been discussed at the board but most importantly should be discussed at length with your avian vet.

Hope this helps.

#168943 - 07/02/08 03:17 AM Re: Egg laying?? [Re: Java_One]  
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THANk yOU for all that info! WOW, I am bookmarking this page! I seriously have NO clue what I would have done if I hadnt found this community. Thank you Java One for sharing this with us. Lori B


***Treat others how you yourself expect to be treated***
#168944 - 07/02/08 03:22 AM Re: Egg laying?? [Re: Java_One]  
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Read, read, read all you want. There's nothing like hands on experience.

Share a little bit more please. Amanda is my female U2 hen (20 yrs old). She waits to have her eggs till after bedtime in the seclusion of her sleep cage. On the nights she lays I can hear her fussing around on the floor of her cage. A number of times during the night she will let out some small cries while trying to push out the egg. I have never disturbed her during the night but I am so tempted to check on her. In the morning there is always an egg.

How long of a struggle/labour (whatever you want to call it) is normal? Is it ok to let her struggle till morning or SHOULD I check on her? She goes to bed at 6:30pm. The laying will begin soon after. I have heard her cry as late as midnight. Is there something I can do to make this a little smoother?

Let's just say there is a prolapse. It happens in the middle of the night and it's going to be maybe 12 hours till I can get her to the vet. What do I do till then?

As a matter of fact I poked my finger in there yesterday and I felt an egg. I am posting this one hour after her bedtime and I have already heard that familiar cry twice. I think tonight the night.

Last edited by TiKa's Dad; 07/02/08 03:55 AM.

John
Another 24 hours down. Only a lifetime to go. God speed! ~AngiesArk~ laugh
#168958 - 07/02/08 05:18 AM Re: Egg laying?? [Re: TiKa's Dad]  
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Some birds will fuss and chirp while going about the laying, some don't. Even chicken hens will make a little tut tut tut. Some go po-kawwwk.

Most of my hens also lay at night in the seclusion of their sleep cage. Others seek out dark spots all over the house and lay there, but I still put them in their cages at night to sleep and in the a.m. they go right back to their eggs.

As long as she's been doing her normal egg laying with no problem so far, I wouldn't be concerned about the time she takes to actually lay. Some people have actually had some hens lay eggs in their hands, I used to have a bird who would lay in my shirt.

As long as the egg shell itself is strong, of normal size and has no blood on the outside, I wouldn't be worried enough to check through the night. Not too much you can do to make things smoother for Amanda, you have been giving her a good diet, I'm sure. If you disturb her too much, she will delay laying her egg, and that's not a good thing.

Some birds will lay eggs anywhere and at the drop of a hat. Amanda is one of those who need privacy and quiet to feel comfortable enough to lay.

If she has a prolapse (this occurred with one of my birds quite recently, she had an unusually large egg she tried to push out and that's how the prolapse occurred. She had to have surgery both to remove the egg and do a salpingectomy and had a purse string stitch around her cloaca. She came through with flying colors, and she was a small bird), if Amanda has a prolapse during the night, she will be o.k. as long as you get her to the vet asap. Within your 12 hours will not be life threatening. What you should do until she gets to the vet is keep her in as clean a cage as possible, so no feces contaminate the exposed organ. That's about all you can do.

A prolapse is considered less of an emergency than egg binding (however it IS extremely serious), only because of the danger of peritonitis (blood poisoning) which could occur with an internal broken egg, or if a shell hasn't formed, much like an ectopic pregnancy in humans.

I have major grey hair growth during hormonal season, believe me. More than half my flock of assorted 27 birds are hens.

#168960 - 07/02/08 05:33 AM Re: Egg laying?? [Re: Java_One]  
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Thank you so much. I will sleep better tonight. She is po-kawwwking right now. I kind of figured leaving her alone was best. Last batch of 2 eggs were strong and had really good shells.

She did lay one in my lap when we first got her. Everything was still new. She pushed it out reasonably easy. ( I guess if you consider shittin a basketball easy).


John
Another 24 hours down. Only a lifetime to go. God speed! ~AngiesArk~ laugh
#168967 - 07/02/08 06:10 AM Re: Egg laying?? [Re: TiKa's Dad]  
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Quite a few of my birds will even lay right from the perch. I know this because in the a.m. I find cracked eggs on the floor of the cage.

LOL "shittin a basketball", oh how all the human mothers can relate to that one!!!

#168987 - 07/02/08 03:21 PM Re: Egg laying?? [Re: Java_One]  
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Hi John. How is Amanda this morning? Did she lay her egg? I thought hormonal season was over around here until I walked in on my Isabella "doing the nasty" on a toy on her playgym, sigh... It's probably a good thing that she will be boarded tomorrow for a week while we are out of town. That should shake up her normal routine enough to short-circuit any egg-laying plans, I hope!

Annette


The journey of a thousand miles begins with one step - Old Chinese Proverb
#168996 - 07/02/08 06:14 PM Re: Egg laying?? [Re: MissYumYum]  
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Update: Egg #1

The po-kawwwking stopped about 20 minutes after I went to bed (11:30pm) and the house went really quiet. Normal.

Pulled the cover this morning and we have egg #1.
http://picasaweb.google.com/jlcribber/Pets/photo#5218440025834524578

As soon as I opened her cage door she was out. Glanced down once at the egg and up to the top just like normal. I could read her mind. Lets get out of here and go eat. She always ignores the first egg in the beginning??

The egg is strong and hard. There was no blood.
http://picasaweb.google.com/jlcribber/Pets/photo#5218440247441107922

Amandas bottom is tight and normal looking.
http://picasaweb.google.com/jlcribber/Pets/photo#5218440111180777954
http://picasaweb.google.com/jlcribber/Pets/photo#5218440171956349650

So far so good. I expect a second egg in 3 days.

Amanda has been snuggling and preening Tika all morning. He's just soakin it up like he's at club med gettin a massage.

If I take her back to the sleep cage in the other room. She will jump in and go sit on the egg. I would need to leave her locked in her cage all day in that dim room. So I push her cage into her aviary so I can leave the door open and give her the option to sit on the egg or not. Tikas aviary shares 1 wall with Amanda. Of course he watches her like a hawk if she goes and sits on the egg. I think it may bother her the first few days but not later on. Basically she only likes to sit on them at night in her usual sleep area where she had them.

Java one. Should I just leave her to hunker down all day in that dim room in the cage or take the cage to the aviary like I'm doing now?? She does sit on them all night. If I leave her in the room she will almost hibernate. We won't get to see her for the next 30 days.

Just curious?? Now that the bird has layed one egg. Is it necessary for the birds to mate again before the next egg for it to be viable? Or is one successful mating all it takes for all the eggs??

You have been tremendous help.




John
Another 24 hours down. Only a lifetime to go. God speed! ~AngiesArk~ laugh
#168997 - 07/02/08 06:19 PM Re: Egg laying?? [Re: TiKa's Dad]  
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Wow, John, you document this like a pro - you should be a research scientist! Seriously, though, thanks for the update. Glad she's looking good and came through like a trooper. But, don't tell Amanda that her bottom is now on the World Wide Web for public viewing, LOL!

Annette


The journey of a thousand miles begins with one step - Old Chinese Proverb
#168998 - 07/02/08 06:24 PM Re: Egg laying?? [Re: MissYumYum]  
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Reading all of this egg laying info is starting to worry me. Callie will be 6 this month so I guess I need to get ready for this. But it does scare me thinking about it....so I've been reading all I can to hopefully be as prepared as I can be for when the time comes.

Annette: Isabel will have her sis to keep her company as of Sunday...when I head back out west to work for the week. Do you think Callie's 'every other week' boarding the past few months might help to keep her hormones off balance enough to avoid any egg laying?


mark

Fear causes hesitation...and hesitation will cause your worst fears to come true.
#168999 - 07/02/08 06:26 PM Re: Egg laying?? [Re: MissYumYum]  
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Well thank you. I think she likes showing it off anyway.

This is good info most people with hens could use I'm sure.

The last batch of eggs were on jan.22 and jan.26. Exactly the same size. The second egg is usually slightly smaller by about 1/16".


John
Another 24 hours down. Only a lifetime to go. God speed! ~AngiesArk~ laugh
#169000 - 07/02/08 06:29 PM Re: Egg laying?? [Re: TiKa's Dad]  
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Calliesdad. It won't stop the hormones. But it may just do the trick to keep her from laying eggs. For now.


John
Another 24 hours down. Only a lifetime to go. God speed! ~AngiesArk~ laugh
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