Maroon-bellied Conures are easy to breed and very popular in the pet trade, which makes them very appealing for potential breeding programs.
Below are the dimensions of nesting boxes usually used for these conures. However, the dimensions can vary widely, as they are influenced by the owner’s and the birds’ preferences. The preferences of the breeding birds can also be influenced by the size and type of nest-box / log in which the bird was hatched and reared.
If a pair ignores the nest boxes that you have provided; the solution would be to offer a choice of types and sizes placed in different locations of the flight. This will allow them choose the one they feel most comfortable with. Once that nestbox has been identified, all the others can be removed, sanitized and offered to other breeding or roosting birds.
Log / Nest-box:
- Length / depth: 16 – 24 inches (or ~ 400 – 600 mm)
- Log internal diameter approx. 10 – 12 inches (~250 – 300 mm)
- Nest-box internal dimensions approx. 250 mm square (or approx. 10 inches square)
- Diameter of entrance hole: approx. 3 inches ( ~70 – 80 mm)
- Inspection hole: Can be square or round. Diameter: ~4 inches (100 mm)
- A Removable top / lid can be a useful access point for inspections and for cleaning.
- Location and height of log / nest-box: Install in a sheltered part of the aviary at about 5 feet (~1.5 – 1.8 meters) height, but not too close to the roof to cause heat problems in the hotter months.
- Angle of log or nest box: 45 degrees through to vertical. Most boxes are vertical.
- Nesting log / nest-box material: Add about 2 inches of decomposed suitable nest box litter to the bottom of the box to help stabilize the eggs and absorb the droppings from the chicks.
Options for suitable nesting material are decomposed non-toxic saw dust, corn cob, shredded newspaper, clean straw / dried grass or wood shavings (i.e., Aspen shavings or wood chips). The larger wood chips the better, so the parents don’t feed it to the babies or the chicks accidentally ingest it.
Please note that some wood shavings – such as pine, cedar and redwood – give off aromatic hydrocarbons (phenols) and acids that are toxic and can cause dermatitis, allergic symptoms and irritation of the digestive tract. They should not be used in cages, aviaries, or nestboxes.
- Incubation: The hen lays 3 – 6 eggs – both the hen and cock share in incubating the eggs (26 – 28 days).
Conures have a habit of removing all the nest box material and laying their eggs on the bare wooden base.
Nest inspections are generally not tolerated. If nest inspection is necessary, wait until both parents have left the nest. They can be aggressive and protective of the nest area when breeding.
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