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I have a Female Blue and Gold Macaw that is about 9 years

Customer Question
.I have a Female Blue...

.I have a Female Blue and Gold Macaw that is about 9 years old , that started to act weird like a month ago. Going down to the floor cage and grabbing her feathers tail to her front... in a few days I knew what's going on, since she'd lay an egg. She was moving it from place to place... I provided a shoes box but in 2 days the egg broke.. her behavior continued but about 20 days passed until she laid another one. These one lasted even less, only one day.... so I had to remove it. But, this time she had laid the third egg in t JA: I'm sorry to hear that. Could be a lot of things that cause lethargy. The Veterinarian will know how to help the bird. What is the bird's name? Customer: less than three days. JA: Is there anything else the Veterinarian should be aware of about the bird? Customer: Her name is Bella

Submitted: 3 months ago.Category: Bird
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Answered in 2 hours by:
7/24/2017
Bird Specialist: August Abbott, CAS, Certified Avian Specialist replied 3 months ago
August Abbott, CAS
August Abbott, CAS, Certified Avian Specialist
Category: Bird
Satisfied Customers: 7,634
Experience: Cert. Avian Specialist; Int. Assoc.Animal Behavior Consult; Pet Ind. Joint Advisory Council; author
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I'm August Abbott, cert. avian specialist; owner of N.CA Parrot Rescue. Give me just a few minutes to review your question & respond. I'm with you

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Customer reply replied 3 months ago
Thank you!
Customer reply replied 3 months ago
Okay, even better.
Bird Specialist: August Abbott, CAS, Certified Avian Specialist replied 3 months ago

I'm sorry I'm not in a position to make calls (the system generated the phone call option ) - I'm working right now from inside my macaw rescue/rehab facility and if these birds hear me on a phone it's ear shattering chaos as they try to join in the conversation. I'm pretty sure you know how that is.

Hang in there for me - I'm sending a LOT of info for you; much will be what you already know, but I believe it's best to give too much info than too little

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Bird Specialist: August Abbott, CAS, Certified Avian Specialist replied 3 months ago

Egg laying is something that every female bird can do without benefit of male birds. Of course eggs laid without a male to mate with are not fertile and will not hatch. Laying, in birds other than chickens and other food source poultry, is not healthy and shouldn’t be ignored. All steps you can take to stop this behavior should be taken and right away.

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When a bird lays she’s got a very increased risk for egg binding or Dystocia, both potentially life threatening situations that would require immediate veterinary intervention. Even if it’s in the middle of the night on a weekend or holiday.
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You have to have a vet who knows you and your bird, ready to open their office for this emergency; or have an urgent care clinic you know about and know how to get to.
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Whether the bird is laying or not, make sure you provide fresh cuttlebone to females at all times to help maintain calcium. Other good sources of calcium are in fresh foods such as kale, broccoli, chard tops, spinach and collard greens.

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By leaving laid eggs with them it should discourage laying more for a while.
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If you notice any egg cracked or broken, however, it must be removed since this is a breeding ground for bacteria and other potential infectious problems. Remember, eggs are the number one modality to grow viruses in development of vaccines; they grow other things as well!
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Putting in some fake eggs, often available at craft’s stores, is an idea too. Just be sure to use plain wooden types or enamel, plastic - a type that has nothing dangerous for a bird to possibly gnaw on.
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There are online sources that provide fake eggs for the species. One example is right here http://theeggshop.com
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You might want to increase her nighttime hours to 13 or even 14 sleep instead of 12+12.

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Another option is to move things around inside the cage. Change out her toys, switch perches, rearrange feeding and water cups - make it look 'new' to her. Even moving the actual location a little bit can help.

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Other precautions are to not pet her under her wings or touch consistently from the mid-back down (this can trigger egg laying).

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No feeding her from your mouth, which is just a good idea anyway since we have far too much bacteria there to be safe for a bird.

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No feeding soft foods from your fingers which may be perceived as regurgitation, another mating behavior.

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If egg laying continues or becomes chronic, you must consult with an avian vet or other vet who is well experienced with birds. Chances of severe health complications exist in over-layers.

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For more about nutrition, behavior modification and overall problem solving
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http://www.4animalcare.org/birds

I'm staying on for you right now so let me know if this is helpful and anything else you need or have questions about. With a macaw rescue, believe me, I've been where you are

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Customer reply replied 3 months ago
What's the usual length of time of laying eggs?? Cause she layed her first one more than 20 days ago, after the second day I've taken it away since it was cracked. Then her behavior continued but not eggs until 3 days ago that we found another egg.. which she cracked the same day. Then of course I removed it. And then in less than two days we found another one.
Customer reply replied 3 months ago
I'm feeding her now only pellets, Zupreem. And I Stopped the grains with vitamins. Also I'm giving her fresh fruits and some fresh vegetables, but I'm afraid since her droppings are more watery since all her new behaviors. What about feeding her boiled eggs?? Is this recommended?? She loves it.
Customer reply replied 3 months ago
She is super tame with me, and specially now she asks for love and attention. After her first egg was laid...she was moving her clutch like it was hurting... then I did caress her in there telling her poor baby you are hurting... then reading in google I found out that I wasn't suppose to do that.... oops..... I haven't done it anymore..
Bird Specialist: August Abbott, CAS, Certified Avian Specialist replied 3 months ago

By all means feed the eggs and include the shell. Excellent choice in stopping 'vitamins' which in a well fed bird are generally unnecessary and potentially dangerous if fat soluable (they would collect in the liver)

I suspect her being 'super tame' with you means she's in love. It's probably you she's thinking responsible for her egg laying and thus her mate.

I have a girl just like this with me. It's hard, but I have to stop my 'beak tugging' with her (gentle pulling on the beak while petting her) and when she tries to regurgitate to me I put her someplace else and ignore her for a while. VERY hard for me because she's terribly special to me. One of the first rescues here.

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Bird Specialist: August Abbott, CAS, Certified Avian Specialist replied 3 months ago

When my chronic layer was finally allowed to sit her 2-egg clutch for 30 days and abandon it on her own, I focused on keeping things different in her area. I moved the cage to the other side of the room; I moved the perches around and even food dishes.

After approx. 30 days on the nest and quitting it, they usually go right back into mating gear and start backing up to things to stimulate the release of an ovum. In a few days after doing this there's often an egg and then 48 hours later maybe a 2nd. Leaving her on her nest again for another month helps curb dangerous laying every few days or weeks

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Customer reply replied 3 months ago
I had a pair of amazon on the same room as Bella, and the female died of a heart attack. Since then I ve rearange the cages for him not to be that far from them, he looked sad .. he got better. But then Bella started with this behavior. Then I left the amazon on that wall with my male African Grey and I change Bella's Cage to the other wall with another window and then she've laid the first egg... do you think that these movements may have cause the change on her behavior???
Bird Specialist: August Abbott, CAS, Certified Avian Specialist replied 3 months ago

The things you've described are certainly stressors and it's 'possible' this kicked up some hormones, but it isn't the first suspicion I'd have.

I really think that the options we've discussed will work. It might take a month or two, but being consistent, adding those extra hours of 'nighttime' (dark and quiet x 13-14 hrs) should do it

If not, just come back here and we'll discuss what's happening and potential medical options for over-layers

I'll support you all the way - I honestly know how frustrating this is for you.

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August Abbott, CAS
August Abbott, CAS
August Abbott, CAS, Certified Avian Specialist
Category: Bird
Satisfied Customers: 7,634
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Experience: Cert. Avian Specialist; Int. Assoc.Animal Behavior Consult; Pet Ind. Joint Advisory Council; author

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