Cockatiel Laying Eggs, But Not Hatching

Cockatiels and any other birds go to the same phase every year: breeding season.

Your female cockatiels will eventually soon lay eggs and become a mother.

Mating, laying eggs, and hatching them are definitely not an easy process, especially for first-timer birds and owners.

You will surely encounter eggs that display no signs of possible hatching. 

Eggs usually hatch after 21 days, though there are cases where their hatching period lasts up to 25 days.

Your precious bird might be capable of laying eggs, but in some cases, their eggs can be infertile.

This is usually the case if your cockatiel eggs failed to hatch after that period, or it could also signify that the egg is dead.

There are a lot of factors why eggs turn to be infertile, but it is not a rare occurrence among cockatiels. 

Let’s look at the possible reasons the eggs are not hatching

Possible Reasons The Eggs Are Not Hatching 

Eggs that failed to hatch after the supposed hatching period would only either mean that it is infertile or the chick died inside.

While having unhatched eggs is sad to bear, you must know what the possible reasons regarding this matter.

You can be aware that your precious bird is healthy, but why does it lay infertile eggs or suffer from embryo death? 

Here are some of the possible reasons why eggs are not hatching: 

1. Cockatiel’s age

If your cockatiel is relatively young when it laid its eggs, it is most likely that the eggs are infertile.

As a rule of thumb, cockatiels should have been at least one year of age before breeding.

Birds that age less than this requirement would be considered too young or premature to be bred. 

2. Infertilized eggs 

If you are confident that your cockatiel is fertile, you should know that it is still capable of producing infertile eggs.

This happens when you only keep a female cockatiel and its eggs are not fertilized. 


You’ve read it right!

Female cockatiels are capable of laying eggs even without a male to fertilize the eggs.

If this is the case, one should not really expect that you would be able to see these eggs hatching after some time. 

3. Health problems 

Another reason why your female bird’s eggs are not hatching is because the embryo or the chick inside is already dead.

Embryo mortality may happen when your cockatiel lacks essential nutrients needed to produce healthy eggs.

If your bird is also unhealthy, it can also cause them to lay infertile eggs.

So now the question arises

What do you do with an infertile cockatiel egg?

Carry on reading to find out

What Do You Do With An Infertile Cockatiel Egg? 

Through candling an egg, you would be able to know whether it is fertilized or not.

Remember: it is important to know whether the eggs can be hatched or if you are open in keeping these eggs.

However, if there are infertile eggs, what should you do exactly?

Do you keep them?

Do you throw them away? 

The decision will actually depend on your cockatiel’s behavior.

If your bird has been very nesty and hormonal, it is suggested to either boil the eggs and put it back, or just simply replace it with fakes then throw away the real ones. 

Surprisingly, cockatiels know when there is a missing egg in the clutch. If you simply remove the infertile eggs, they would attempt to lay one or two again to replace it.

Letting this would only harm your bird from too much laying. 

But some cockatiels might behave as if they don’t really care about the eggs at all.

If you think that your bird has lost interest in her eggs, then you can throw the infertile eggs out. 

How Do You Know When Cockatiel Eggs Are About To Hatch? 

Under an intense light, there are visible signs of a hatching egg.

It would normally take for cockatiel’s eggs to hatch 21 to 25 days after incubation.

If you check the egg under a candle or bright light, you can see some movements, the embryo, and a series of blood networks. 

You can determine when the eggs are about to hatch by constantly monitoring the days passed and the state of the chick inside the egg. 

What Happens If Eggs Don’t Hatch in 21 Days? 

Eggs that failed to hatch after 21 days would not automatically mean it is infertile.

In some cases, cockatiel’s eggs can hatch in 25 days.

There are various factors that could affect the hatching period of the eggs. 

It is necessarily recommended to wait for a few more days for eggs to hatch.

There may be some delays due to the temperature, humidity, and even how often your cockatiel incubates them.

If they fail to hatch even after 25 days, then it is safe to conclude that they are infertile eggs.

What To Do With Eggs That Didn’t Hatch? 

Once a considerable number of days have passed and you still didn’t get chicks from egg hatching, then the eggs must either be infertile or the chick died for some reason.

Just wait for a few more days or weeks until your cockatiel fully abandons the nest or the fertile eggs have already been hatched three days earlier. 

Some veteran owners try to see the inside of the egg through candle lighting or just by simply opening it up just to figure out what could be the reason behind it not hatching.

However, most owners just simply throw or dispose of the eggs completely. 

Wrapping Up

Cockatiels lay egg clutches for at least once to twice a year.

However, not all eggs are capable of hatching since some might be infertile or experience embryo death.

It is important to monitor the hatching period and even the development of the embryo to have a smooth-sailing hatching process.

Make sure you also keep your cockatiels healthy during the nesting period.

If there are infertile or unhatched eggs, make sure you dispose of them properly.

Do not remove the eggs when your cockatiel is still nesting as she might attempt to replace the missing egg. 

Overall, cockatiels can lay infertile eggs due to many factors such as their age, infertility, and health problems. 


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