Why Do Cockatiels Keep Laying Eggs: Tips and Solutions to Prevent It?

Cockatiels (Nymphicus hollandicus) are small parrots that are native to Australia. They are a popular pet bird because of their friendly and sociable nature, and their ability to learn tricks and mimic sounds. Cockatiels are usually between 11 and 14 inches long and come in a range of colors, including grey, white, yellow, and peach. They have a distinctive crest of feathers on their head, which they can raise and lower depending on their mood.

Why do Cockatiels Lay Eggs?

Cockatiels are known to lay eggs, even if they are not breeding. This behavior is more common in female birds, but males can also lay eggs in some cases. There are several reasons why cockatiels lay eggs, including natural instincts, environmental factors, diet and nutrition, and age and hormonal changes.

Factors That Contribute to Cockatiels Laying Eggs

Natural Instincts

Cockatiels, like many birds, have a natural instinct to lay eggs and raise young. In the wild, female birds will lay eggs to ensure the survival of their species. This instinct can also be triggered in pet cockatiels, even if they are not breeding.

Environmental Factors

Cockatiels may lay eggs in response to certain environmental factors, such as the presence of a nest box or nesting materials. They may also be triggered by changes in their environment, such as a move to a new location or the introduction of a new pet.

Diet and Nutrition

Cockatiels require a balanced diet that is rich in nutrients to maintain their health and prevent egg-laying behavior. A diet that is too high in fat or lacks certain vitamins and minerals can contribute to egg-laying behavior.

Age and Hormonal Changes

As cockatiels age, their hormone levels can change, which can trigger egg-laying behavior. Female birds are more likely to lay eggs as they approach breeding age (around 1 year old), while male birds may lay eggs later in life. Hormonal changes can also be caused by illness or stress.

Problems Associated with Cockatiels Laying Eggs

Egg Binding

Egg binding is a serious condition that can occur when a bird is unable to lay an egg. This can be caused by a variety of factors, including a poor diet, lack of exercise, or stress. Egg binding can be life-threatening, so it is important to seek veterinary care immediately if you suspect your cockatiel is egg-bound.

Behavioral Problems

Cockatiels that lay eggs may exhibit behavioral problems, such as aggression or excessive screaming. This can be caused by hormonal changes or stress related to the egg-laying behavior.

Health Issues

Cockatiels that lay eggs may be at risk for certain health issues, such as calcium deficiency or egg-related infections. It is important to monitor your bird’s health closely if they are laying eggs, and to seek veterinary care if you notice any signs of illness or discomfort.

Tips to Prevent Cockatiels from Laying Eggs

Reduce Daylight Hours

Cockatiels are sensitive to changes in daylight hours, which can trigger egg-laying behavior. To prevent this, you can reduce the amount of daylight your bird is exposed to by covering their cage or moving them to a darker area of your home.

Remove Nesting Materials

If your cockatiel is laying eggs, it is important to remove any nesting materials from their cage. This includes items like paper, cloth, or other materials that your bird could use to create a nest.

Adjust Diet and Nutrition

A balanced diet is essential to prevent egg-laying behavior in cockatiels. Make sure your bird is eating a variety of fresh fruits and vegetables, along with a high-quality pelleted diet. You can also limit the amount of high-fat foods your bird consumes, such as seeds or nuts.

Provide Adequate Exercise and Stimulation

Cockatiels that are bored or inactive may be more likely to lay eggs. To prevent this, make sure your bird is getting plenty of exercise and mental stimulation. You can provide toys or puzzles for your bird to play with, or spend time interacting with them each day.

Solutions for Cockatiels that Continue to Lay Eggs

Vet Consultation and Hormonal Treatment

If your cockatiel continues to lay eggs despite your efforts to prevent it, you may need to consult with a veterinarian. Hormonal treatments, such as injections or implants, can help regulate your bird’s hormone levels and prevent egg-laying behavior.

Offering a Calcium Supplement

Calcium deficiency can be a contributing factor to egg-laying behavior in cockatiels. Offering a calcium supplement, such as a cuttlebone or calcium block, can help prevent this issue.


Cockatiels are beloved pets, but their egg-laying behavior can be confusing and worrying for pet owners. By understanding the factors that contribute to egg-laying, and implementing preventative measures such as adjusting diet and reducing daylight hours, you can help prevent this behavior in your bird. If your bird continues to lay eggs, it is important to seek veterinary care to ensure their health and well-being.

ThePetFaq Team