Babies of the Month--Lori's Babies
Thank you so much Lori for sharing this beautiful experience with us.

By Eleanor McCaffrey Copyright Notice: No portion of this text or photos
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Lori took this magnificent picture just as an egg was starting to hatch. Breeders mark the date the egg was laid on each egg, using a soft, felt tip marker. This will tell them when to expect each individual egg to hatch. Lori makes a dot on the egg with a soft permanent felt marker (very gently). One dot is the first laid, 2 dots is the second, etc. Cockatiels lay one egg every 48 hours. Eggs will then hatch about 21 days later in the succession in which they are laid. Lori's eggs have been hatching in 18 days consistently. She said this is because the hen sits tight from the time the first egg is laid! If the chick is in distress and unable to hatch on its own, the breeder will take the egg to the vet to assist the chick in hatching. Breeders know the signs of a distressed chick and will only assist themselves if they have being taught by an avian veterinarian or a another very experienced breeder.

As you can see, the egg did hatch. Here is the first glimpse of a chick that is only 2 hours old, the one on the bottom right that is resting on top of the other baby.You can still see the yellow from the egg sac on the bird. Lori has told me that the bird's parents clean every last piece of shell and egg that is left on the baby after hatching. The other little angels in the photograph hatched on the same day. There are 5 babies in this pile and the oldest one is at the top.If you look closely at the picture, you can see the youngest  one's butt..then one's bald head with the two eyes...right below it is another one's head...and to the left is the other one's head with the dark eyes! Lori has named this photograph "5 Little Miracles."

Lori's clutch of cockatiels are growing and thriving. She allows the parents to feed the babies for the first 2-3 weeks. The chicks will receive antibodies, necessary for good health from their parents. Both the male and female birds share in the feeding process. Lori begins handfeeding at the age of 14-21 days days. She has to feed the babies every 4 hours between 6 AM until midnight. The ages of the babies in the back row from left to right are:18 days old,18 days old and 14 days old. The ages of the chicks on the bottom row from left to right are 16 days old and 12 days old. The proud parents of this beautiful clutch of birds are named Blondie and Curly.

Look how quickly cockatiels grow. They seem to almost double in size overnight.Dusty and Pearl are now 26 days old. By about 8 weeks of age they will be weaned. A bird must first be fully weaned and eating on its own for at least 2 weeks more. By 10 weeks of age, they are ready for placement in a loving home. Since Lori can't find a more loving home than her own, she has kept all 14 of her babies! Thank you so much Lori for sharing this beautiful experience with us!You are truly a loving and dedicated breeder!


Graphic Courtesy of
Graphic Garden
Lisa's Country Clip Art

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