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Successfully Breeding African Grey Parrots

How can I get African grey parrots to breed?


Q: How can I get my African grey parrots to breed? I have two African grey parrots that have been together for about 20 years. The female started laying eggs — three unfertile. She is laying again in the nest box, but she doesn't seem interested. Over 20 years ago, I bred African grey parrots, but they were wild and all three pairs had lots of babies. These two are from different parents. I never take them out of their cage so they are not bonded to me, but they talk to me in the morning when we take showers. They share a large bathroom with big windows with a cockatoo in another cage about three feet away from them.

Jean Pattison explains mating and breeding African greysJean Pattison, also known as "The African Queen," explains:
What I describe is the norm, but there are always exceptions. Nothing is written in stone. I do not know all the circumstances surrounding this pair of birds, so I will generalize.

When African greys are put together as young chicks, it seems they never breed. Perhaps there is something in their genetics that make them seek out different flocks when they mature to prevent inbreeding. African greys have to like each other to breed. They also need to be on the same hormonal cycle to breed, and privacy helps. Many times, other birds, especially loud birds in close proximity, can keep a pair from breeding.

If possible, I would remove the cockatoo from the African greys' nesting area. Allow the hen to sit on her eggs and to leave them on her own. Allow three weeks beyond the normal hatch time before you remove them. Once the eggs are removed, remove their nest box to allow the birds to come into condition together. Wait about three months, return the nest box (about September) and start providing longer dark time — shorter daylight hours. Because there is a big window, adjust your lighting to match the outside seasonal lighting. African grey parrots usually start copulating in October as the days become shorter.

It is usually about a month later that the hen lays her eggs. Always provide a night light because African grey parrots are very active at night. The bird’s diet should include some sunflower seed and little fruit and vegetables. I recommend a pellet-based diet of about 70-percent pellets and 30-percent good seed mix. African grey parrots seem to need the extra fat. A breeder pellet would be good at this time, but after a second clutch, go back to a regular pellet.

Try this for the breeding season coming up. If these birds were once pet birds, the male might never know what to do. After 20 years, if it has not happened, it might never happen. However, with the hen becoming sexually active, this may bring the male into sexual maturity.

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Successfully Breeding African Grey Parrots

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Reader Comments
hi my friend has male grey and got a female breeder he wants too breed he think the owner he mate and he a pet , but how can she put him with the breeder female ,
micheal, lakestation, IN
Posted: 3/13/2013 7:11:32 AM
I appreciate Jean Pattison replying to the question. As a small breeder and hand feeder, I think it is best to get the information out there rather then keep it a secret. Amatures are going to breed their birds if they want to and it's a shame that people don't want anyone else to know how to breed. Breeders are not treated the same as far as handling time as your companion parrot. Part of the natural breeding process includes leaving them alone. People who are are afraid of giving knowledge to others can lead to questioning their antics in parrot breeding. This is an open community for people to come to to gather information. Thanks Jean for telling us your answer.
Karen, Belleville, MI
Posted: 10/13/2012 4:41:41 PM
Ive had a pair of birds for four years and they never looked like doing anything until recently. in the past 12 months the hen started pulling some chest feathers and attacking the timber around the nest box opening. I left the back of the box open and put corn stalks etc. in and the hen started spending time in the open box crewing up the stalks (and the nest box). All this time, no sign of mating. I closed the box (inspection flap) several months ago but kept adding stalks. In the past week, (mid winter for us) and at the coldest time of year, I noticed the hen was in the box for long periods. When i finally saw her out i snuck a look in to see two eggs. The hen had heavly feathered her nest and begun to lay (at around 10 years of age). It remains to be seen if the eggs are fertile. Hope all goes well at this stage....and some of the nest feathers grow back after this.
Andrew, Sydney
Posted: 7/8/2012 10:52:10 PM
where can










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Where can I buy a breeding congo Grey breeding pair
thanks
Syed Mahmud, Islandia New Yorl, NY
Posted: 10/10/2011 5:32:43 PM
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