Tuesday, January 19, 2010

Hand Fed Baby Bourke Parakeets

The tiny Bourke in the photo with two eggs hatched the day the photo was taken, Jan. 18, 2010.  His head is facing downward so that only his neck and back show.

The two larger babies are about two weeks old. They grow fast! Their sister from an earlier clutch is very interested.  She likes to share their food, although she's been able to eat on her own for weeks.
The egg photos below show the potential for differing sizes of parakeet eggs. They are round or oval with no problem. However, I've never seen a very small egg hatch. The eggs in these photos are left from clutches that didn't hatch. Most often simply infertile.

I recently opened a dead egg to see why it didn't hatch. In the past the hen has produced three healthy clutches with 8 healthy youngsters. This egg was in a clutch of three eggs, two hatched healthy babies. This egg had actually been piping, but had quit and several days later I opened it to investigate.

Instead of a normal chick, this one had a normal-sized head and body, but no limbs. The body had no wings or legs. Although it developed for the normal length of time, it couldn't open the shell. Nature prevented this deformed baby from exiting its shell.  Fortunately, it's the only one I've ever seen like this. I don't open every unhatched egg, but was curious about this one.

Bourke & Splendid eggs can vary in size. Some are round, others oval. Although white, slight color variations may also exist. For countless reasons, more eggs don't hatch than actually do.  The two tiny ones on the right in this photo weren't likely to hatch under any circumstances.

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