Cockatiel Review

How Long Does It Take for Cockatiels to Hatch?

how long does it take for cockatiel eggs to hatch

Adopting a pair of beautiful, friendly birds, you are to be ready to breed them. Quite naturally, it takes some effort. But if you care for your lovely pets, you’d wish to maximize their health. How long does it take for cockatiel to hatch? Female cockatiels lay eggs, but not all of them become chicks. What shall you do to make breeding successful? Make sure your lovely pets are sexually matured and healthy. The pair of cockatiels should suit each other. Encourage nesting, providing favorable conditions. There are some factors to consider. Let’s discuss them in detail.

How Many Times a Year Do Cockatiels Lay Eggs?

Living in the wild, small Australian parrots produce only 1-2 clutches per year. It commonly happens in spring and autumn, after heavy rain. It lets the birds get enough food for their chicks. Cockatiels are monogamous breeders: they choose their mates responsively and develop mad strong bonds.

In captivity, they are able to lay eggs year-round. So, you are to put a pair of birds in your best cage for cockatiels. Equip it with a comfortable nest box. Selecting a breeding mate for your first bird is a challenging task. Force-paired cockatiels might be less fertile than wild birds.

Real talk, it could reduce their reproductive activity. It may affect their:

  • nest inspection;
  • egg-laying;
  • incubation;
  • bowl-formation completion;
  • fertility.

If a nest box is absent, cockatiels could lay eggs on the floor. What to put on the bottom of a bird cage? Provide soft nesting material, like pine shavings or shredded paper. Upon inspecting the nest, the pairs of cockatiels form nest bowls. In captivity, it may take longer.

More information can be found here: best cockatiel cage!

Special Cockatiel Breeding Needs

special cockatiel breeding needs

Do your female pet birds lay eggs in winter? In a mild, warm climate that resembles those of Australia, it seems to be possible. Meanwhile, a limited diet won’t let them do it. In New York, cold and wet winters are not favorable. Spring and summer months are the most beneficial. When it’s not brick outdoors, it’s easier to eliminate drafts.

My lovely feathered friends love spring. They start chirping and whistling cheerfully at sunrise. They experience hormonal changes, becoming ready to breed. Now, they especially need:

  • abundance of sunlight;
  • warmth;
  • healthy, well-balanced nutrition;
  • comfortable nesting conditions.

When do cockatiels molt? It may happen 2-3 times a year. So is egg-laying. Meanwhile, spring is the most responsible time. Now, your cherished birds need proper nutrition. It is to be rich in proteins and vitamins. In ideal conditions, parrots may produce 2 clutches every year. But I guess it’s not healthy. So, my both female cockatiels, Loki and Sweetie do it only in spring.

How Can You Tell if a Cockatiel Egg is Going to Hatch?

Social contacts are mad important. Fortunately, both pairs of my lovely pet birds are friendly. It seems they have chosen each other in the pet shop. So, they have built strong bonds with each other. My charming cockatiels care for their mates, preen and entertain them. In spring, Nigel and Yo-Yo do their mating dances.

It doesn’t take them long to inspect their nest boxes. In a new cage, it may last up to 2 weeks. Thus, in about 10-14 days after mating, female cockatiels start laying eggs. The clutch may include 4-6 unborn chicks. Can you touch cockatiel eggs? Even if she shows no interest in them, don’t remove them. It may cause stress and dangerous health issues.

In about 10 days or right before hatching, try to check the eggs for fertility. Candling them, you should see blood veins. Special equipment might be necessary. It means that very soon, you hear the chicks peeping. Within 24-36 hours they break through the shell.

why do cockatiels not sit on their eggs

Why Do Cockatiels Not Sit on Their Eggs?

They commonly don’t do it until they have 3-4 eggs to incubate. Commonly, a female cockatiel sits on eggs during the night. Her mate relieves her in the daytime. Commonly, a male bird shares her incubation duties. He may:

  • spend a couple of hours/day in the nest box;
  • be sitting nearby and defending his family;
  • feed his caring mate.

Both birds need some hours to bathe, eat and drink. They are to stretch their wings. Their best cockatiel toys would entertain your pets. Playing with cotton ropes, swings or ladders, cockatiels take a rest. Quite naturally, shiny or jingling objects might be inopportune these days. Perches and chewing chunks or blocks are always useful.

Female cockatiels may get aggressive during the incubation period. Defending her nest, Loki raises her wings, and he makes hissing sounds and screams. It happens only when my friends visit me. They don’t come close to the cage. Thus, if somebody disturbs cockatiels, they might leave their fertile eggs alone.

See interesting information about best toys for cockatiels!

How Long Does a Cockatiel Sit on Her Eggs?

Pairing cockatiels is not easy: it might become a mad daunting task. Not all cockatiels will breed. Free mate choice is important. In the wild, it lets a pair of cockatiels form a stable bond. Even flying rats that are street pigeons mate for life. In that case, the chance they become caring parents/good breeders increases.

Environmental conditions also matter. They may improve or deteriorate the reproduction activity of the birds.

FactorIn the WildIn Captivity
Clutches/Year 1-2 2-3
Eggs in the Clutch 4-7 6-8
Nest Inspection, Days 7-1010-14
Incubation Period, Days 19-20 18-21

How big should a cockatiel cage be? A pair of adult birds need not less than 20*20*50 inches of space. A 12” *12” minimum nest box is necessary. In the wild, cockatiels build their nests in the trees. They hollow up to 6 feet above the ground. So, a larger breeding cage is beneficial. So is a nest box. It should have a 3” hole and 1-2 inches of soft material on the bottom.

Bottom Line

Incubation period is not easy for your feathered friends. Both male and female cockatiel may feel week and exhausted. Defending the nest and sitting on eggs are mad demanding tasks. Additionally, birds commonly molt in spring. So, try to support your cherished pets. Provide them with healthy, varied food. A well-balanced diet is essential. Cockatiels would also need comfortable conditions to breed. A spacious cage with a cute nest box makes them feel safer. This way, all your cockatiels, both adult and young will be healthy and happy.


Hi, my name is Charlie. I come from Patchogue Village, New York. Are you fond of cockatiels? As for me, I’ve got four pet birds. Their names are Yo-Yo and Sweetie, Nigel and Loki. Do you know how to care for them? I’m trying to hunt down the questions now. Join me, and let’s do it together.


  • Hello My name is Janice and I have 2 cocktails and I have one egg. How many eggs do they usually have at one time? I have no nest in the cage, but I have some paper in the cage, should I pick the egg up and put it in a nest box.

    Thank You

  • Hello Janice!
    My birds lay eggs one at a time over several days. Sometimes with a break of 1-2 days. It always happens differently. But surely my girl protects them fiercely: gathers them all in a pile, sits on them and hisses menacingly.
    I’ve tried to move the eggs so that the bird doesn’t see it. You should try doing that, too.
    Good luck!