My babies are 5 weeks now, and are regularly eating a combination of crushed up avicakes, nutriberries, and roudybush crumble pellets. How do I know when they are weaned and when to stop feeding them handfeeding forumla?
It depends if they were completely hand raised or parent raised. Parent raised birds wean quicker, as they learn from the parents to eat seeds - especially millet - and get the hang of cracking harder seeds themselves with experience.
Parent raised chicks should be given millet and regular seed in the nest box from as early as two weeks of age, this encourages parents to feed them as the food source is right next to the chicks. The chicks also copy the parents and will nibble the seeds and be weaned even before fledging sometimes. (That is to say fully able to feed themselves seed before they even decide to leave the box and refuse food from their parents).
I have heard hand reared chicks can take longer to adapt to seed, but as a rule they should always have seed available even when being handfed so that they have ample exposure and time to explore and experiment until they are able to feed themselves as they gradually refuse feed from you.
- parent raised babies can be weaned around 40 days of age
- hand reared babies perhaps around 50-60 days of age.
My babies are handraised. I've been feeding them since they were 2 weeks old. I introduced avicakes to them around 3.5 weeks and are currently eating avicakes, nutriberries, and roudybush crumble regularly. I leave dishes of food in their cage, and they eat it by themselves regularly - that's like all they do is eat! But I was just wondering how I know that they are for sureweaned. Do I just stop around 6-8 months? Or will they show some kind of sign? Cuz they don't even beg for baby food like they used to. Does this mean they're weaned already?
Once begging behaviours diminish, they are weaning. When begging behaviours stop, they are essentially weaned. Some babies will refuse food even if they are not competent at eating seed, and will be seen to 'pout' for a few days. It is not uncommon for babies to lose weight as they stop begging and start eating themselves, but this will soon stop and they will pick up again quickly.