I have 2 male and 2 female zebras, 2 unsexed societies, and one spice fince, in a flight cage, along with 6 just-fledged zebras.
As soon as the babies fledged, within days, there was a new nest built inside one of the nest boxes.
HELP! I don't want any more babies, especially since it's winter and they live outside (cage wrapped in plastic to keep out drafts, and small heater in the cage, but still, it's too chilly for babies).
There are two wicker nest boxes in the cage. If I remove those, will they stop laying eggs?
Or should I leave the nest boxes in the cage? I've always seen finch cages with nest boxes. They do sleep in the boxes at night - ALL of them in two nest boxes.
I give all my Finches nest boxes to sleep in as well. As you know, they are very social creatures and they all love cuddling into a box to sleep for the night. Since they are small little birds I encourage this so that they can keep each other warm.
You will find that Finches are very determined and they are quite capable of laying eggs on the bottom of their cage or in food cups if there are no nests provided. Almost nothing stops them!
I bought fake Finch eggs so that I can replace any real eggs they lay. I check their nests every morning and as soon as a real egg makes an appearance I swap it out with a fakie.
It's sad that I can't let them raise chicks, but there are too many unwanted Finches in the world already. So unfortunately I need to be the one to enforce birdy birth control with fake eggs.
I was surprised at how hard it was to find homes for my last clutch of budgies. I did find homes for the last batch of finches, but am not so optimistic for these new six babies. Like you, I definately do not want to bring any more into being, if there are not homes for them.
I guess I will pump up the calcium feed, and let them keep laying, and I will remove the eggs and replace with fake ones. With calcium supplements, hopefully they will not wear their little bodies out.
As has been said where theres a will there is a way with finhes lol. Anything they can fit in they will nest in, I had some build a nest in a tiny little alcove in a cage where I had a bobby hole to let the birds into the aviary, smallest ledge ever but they build a nest and laid in it even though all the other finches crammed on there as well.
Best bet is to just replace the eggs with fakes and make sure they are getting enough calcium
I would remove all of the nests. The species that you have do not need a nest to sleep in. They will very quickly adapt to roosting on perches. If they are all sleeping in the same nest, you can have some very serious problems. They can smother each other or any chicks that are in the nest. Just this past summer, I had five societies that were using a large food dish to sleep in, and when my girlfriend came home from work, she found that the one on the bottom of the pile had been smothered. We have a pretty large cage with a m/f pair of zebras, and two m/f pairs of societies. The two zebras sleep next to each other on their own perch, and the societies cuddle up in a big group on another perch. The societies like to stack themselves on the perch. This shouldn't be a problem, since the one on the bottom can work its way off the perch if it needs to.
Have you had any aggression problems with the birds? The zebras can get pretty aggressive when they find a place to nest. When I first got my finches, I had a male zebra and two male societies. I put a nest in the cage for them to sleep in, and the zebra refused to let any of the others go near it.
Again, just remove the nests from the cage. They will try to find other places to nest if they really want to. To slow down the mating between my zebra pair, I switched to smaller food dishes so they couldn't be used as a nest. Just give them plenty of calcium so there isn't an eggbinding issue. If you do find eggs in a dish, you could shake them and replace them in the nest as they appear, or go the route of replacing them with fake eggs. After a few weeks, the female should realize the eggs are no good, and that should stop the laying for a bit.
Unfortunately, you have some very eager species that are extremely difficult to stop breeding. I found that reducing the amount of light slows down their urges. Mine aren't as eager to breed during the winter, because I let it get a little cooler in the bird room.