Canaries are not the easiest birds to breed, but placing a nest or nesting materials in the cage with a female encourages breeding. The best time to do this is in the spring. Building a sturdy nest is not a complicated project, but the nest is only the first step of the breeding process. Only when the female is ready to breed should the male be put with her. Male canaries, cocks, can kill a female if put with her prematurely. However, the male and female can remain together after the chicks hatch to care for their offspring.
Things You'll Need
- 2 plastic nest cups
- Silicone sealer
- Laundry soap
- 2 toilet paper rolls
- 5 percent Sevin powder
Buy a plastic nest cup from a pet store or online. Poke six small holes in a circle at the bottom of a plastic bowl if you do not want to buy a plastic nest cup. The plastic bowl is the foundation for the nest and is sturdier than using bamboo.
Cut a round piece of cotton large enough to line the plastic bowl. Glue it into the bowl using four drops of silicone sealer. Allow the glue to dry completely. Sprinkle 5 percent Sevin powder into the nest and the bottom of the cage. This protects the nest from ants and mites.
Hang the bowl with liner in the corner of the female's cage. Attach it to the bars of the cage in a location that is not under a food dish or directly under a perch. Placing the nest high in a corner makes the female feel safe. Space the top of the nest at least 4 inches from the top of the cage.
Wash a piece of commercial grade burlap with soap and bleach. Allow it to dry. Cut the burlap into 1-inch squares. Tie a thick string around a roll of unscented bathroom tissue that is almost out of toilet paper. Place the burlap and the toilet paper roll with the string attached into the cage. Your female canary will tear these up more and add them to the nest you built as it suits her.
Repeat steps 1 through 4 to build a second nest. Each breeding pair should have two nests and materials such as the burlap if the female wants to add more. A mother may pick feathers off of her babies to create a second nest if you do not provide one.
Tips & Warnings
- Use a gunny sack instead of burlap if you prefer. Cut the gunny sack into 2-inch squares and then pull it apart. Place the pieces in the cage.
- Do not sprinkle Sevin powder with a percentage higher than 5 in the nest. That can harm your birds.
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