Finches are social birds that are found all over the world. They have a lot of behaviors that can seem unusual to humans. For example, one behavior you may notice about your pet finches is that they sometimes eat their eggs.
And when you see your finch eating its eggs, you may wonder – why do finches eat their eggs?
Usually, finches eat their eggs due to a calcium deficiency. Calcium is an essential nutrient for all birds, and it helps them to develop strong bones and feathers.
If a finch doesn’t have enough calcium in its diet, it may start to eat its eggs to get the nutrient. That is why providing your finches with cuttlebone, and other calcium-rich foods are essential.
In some cases, finches may also eat their eggs if stressed. If a finch feels like there is some danger to the eggs, they need to get rid of them before a predator can get them.
I have answered your question briefly. If you want a detailed explanation of why finches eat their eggs and some other interesting facts about birds, keep reading.
4 Reasons Why Finches Eat Their Eggs
The following are a few reasons why finches may eat their eggs:
As we mentioned before, one of the main reasons why finches eat their eggs is due to a calcium deficiency.
Birds need calcium to grow strong bones and feathers. Calcium helps them develop strong bones and feathers.
If a female finch doesn’t have enough calcium in its diet, it may start to eat its eggs to get the calcium it needs. Finch birds store extra calcium in their bones before breeding season and use that calcium to make egg shells.
Therefore, you must provide your pet finches with a calcium-rich diet. Add cuttlebone and mineral block to their food. You can also give them egg food.
Sometimes, finches may eat their eggs if they are feeling stressed. Many things can cause stress in finches.
If your finch feels its eggs are in danger, it must get rid of them before a predator can take them. Finches may push the dead body out of the nest or consume it to protect the surviving chicks from predators in the wild.
To Get Rid Of Sick or Slow-Growing Offspring
In some cases, finches may eat their chicks if they feel their eggs won’t hatch or they will be weak.
According to some research, house finches might kill their offspring to get rid of young finches that are sick or do not mature fast or at an average pace so that the fittest survive and pass on their healthy genes to future generations.
Another reason why finches may eat their eggs is that they are bored. Finches are social and active birds, and they need to have things to do to stay entertained. If a finch doesn’t have enough to do, it may start to eat its eggs out of boredom.
While it may be strange to us, eating their eggs is not uncommon for finches and some other bird species. So, if you see your finch eating its eggs, don’t be too alarmed.
Ensure your finch gets enough calcium and other nutrients in its diet to avoid eating eggs. Also, provide it with plenty of things to do to prevent boredom.
What Happens To Unfertilized Finch Eggs?
A female finch may lay eggs or be laying eggs even if no male bird (male finch) is present. Even though these unfertile eggs will not hatch, female finches will sit on them to warm them and prepare them for hatching.
You may remove infertile eggs as a pet breeder as soon as possible if you are sure they are not fertile. If you’re unsure, it is recommended that you allow your pet finch to incubate for 12-14 days for the eggs to hatch.
Remove them from their cage if they do not show signs of hatching. If you let your pet finch sit on the infertile eggs, they’ll rot. If you take too long to throw them, the more unpleasant smell they’ll release.
Here’s what female finches do with their unfertilized eggs:
- Eating: Some pet owners have reported their female finches eating unfertilized eggs. Although it may seem strange initially, it indicates that the bird has a calcium deficiency. Even after eating a better diet, some birds still eat eggs.
- Tossing: If a female finch is not calcium-deficient, she will likely toss her unfertilized eggs out of the nest. Female finches will also do this if they feel their eggs are in danger.
- Hatching: In some cases, a female finch will try to hatch her unfertilized eggs. She will sit on them and keep them warm until they hatch. However, since the eggs are not fertilized, they will not hatch.
Why Is My Bird Eating Its Egg?
If your bird is eating its eggs, it may be due to calcium deficiency or stress. The exact reason is unclear to researchers why birds and animals sometimes kill and eat their eggs and young babies.
But it is generally believed that bird/animal parents kill and eat their babies or eggs to satisfy their energy and nutrition needs, make themselves (parents) more attractive to potential mates, or eliminate sick or slow-growing offspring.
Do Wild Birds Eat Their Eggs?
Yes, wild birds can eat their eggs. Wild birds may eat their eggs for the same reasons as pet birds. They may eat their eggs to get certain nutrients into their diet.
However, in the wild, more predators can steal bird eggs, so sometimes, bird parents may eat their eggs to ensure that at least one of their offspring survives.
In addition, birds may try to get rid of eggs that they perceive as damaged or infertile.
Do Birds Eat The Eggs Of Other Birds?
Yes, some bird species eat the eggs of other birds. It is most common in the wild, where food is scarce. However, it can also happen in captivity if a bird (who lives with other birds in the same cage) is not getting enough to eat.
Usually, birds that eat other birds avoid attacking mature birds, but they prey on eggs, fledglings (young birds), and chicks that are easier to catch.
Crows, jays, and magpies are some of the most common egg-eating birds. They eat other birds, including gulls, skuas, and roadrunners. However, even small birds like sparrows and finches have been known to eat eggs.
While it may seem cruel, egg-eating is a survival tactic for some birds. If food is scarce, they will eat anything they can to stay alive, even if that means eating the eggs of other birds.
Hopefully, this article has answered your question: “Why do finches eat their eggs?”
Scientists believe that finches eat their eggs due to a calcium deficiency or stress.
Whatever the reason, it’s essential to ensure your finch is getting enough calcium in its diet so it doesn’t eat its eggs. You can add various foods to your birds’ diet, including cuttlebones, mineral blocks, vegetables, and fruits.