My first experience with keeping and breeding of Pyrrhura hoffmanni gaudens. PART II

August 1st, 2016 | by Pietro de Paolis
My first experience with keeping and breeding of Pyrrhura hoffmanni gaudens. PART II

Read also the first part of this article:

My first experience with keeping and breeding of Pyrrhura hoffmanni gaudens. PART I


After one year keeping them outdoor, last May something was different. In particular, one pair finally spent sometime in the box during the day, with lots of noise. I decided to provide an additional calcium source in order to prevent any problems with eggs laying. After a couple of weeks, in fact, the first egg was laid. Actually this wasn’t the most sexually active  pair of the two. The other one was very active during the whole year, copulating often. Anyway, the second egg was laid after three days from the first. A total of 7 eggs were laid with the same frequency: the female started to incubate them from the third and sat on them with constancy. In the meanwhile, when the fifth was laid, the second pair had spent many days in the box too, and so a look in their nestbox should be done: the first  egg was laid there too. Second pair laid a total of 6 eggs.

All the 13 eggs turned out to be fertile and well incubated by the pairs. During incubation a small amount of egg food started to be provided mixed with dried fruits. After 23-24 days from the beginning of incubation, first chicks hatched. They were monitored constantly and the quantity of egg food was increased day by day. After the fifth chick, the first female left often the box so the other two eggs didn’t hatch. The same happened with the other pair: after the fourth chick, the last two eggs were left in the box. A total of 9 well fed chicks filled the boxes which were checked daily.



Babies in the nestbox (c) Pietro de Paolis


Secondary feathers start growing up (c) Pietro de Paolis


(c) Pietro de Paolis


As soon as the eyes were open, they were ringed with aluminum rings. Chicks started feathering up and finally the first one was out of the box the third week of June. The other four followed him day by day. All five chicks were handled daily before leaving the nest, and surprisingly they still look calm and confident with me, feeding from my hands. Other four were not checked daily because of the male territoriality which led me to give them more privacy. And so the first week of July, the other four chicks left successfully the box.

Once completely fledged, when they were still in the nest, chicks were took to take feather samples for DNA test. There was a negative halo surrounding me during feathers collection. DNA test in fact have been always one of the main issues with Pyrrhura hoffmanni gaudens after lack of calcium. I heard many North European breeders keeping me warned about their past experiences of more than 80% of males in the clutches. I was quite tense because of this, but luckily after receiving DNA results I was happy to read they were 5 males and 4 females!



(c) Pietro de Paolis


(c) Pietro de Paolis


(c) Pietro de Paolis


So, after this first experience, I am going to continue breeding this species, which can be bred easily with a good environment, and a good diet. Moreover I think lack of females is a factor that cannot help this species to spread, even though my impression is that it is just related to climate – environmental conditions during incubation. I will keep up this important success of mine, and wish good breeding to all who will start to breed Pyrrhura hoffmanni gaudens.


author: Pietro de Paolis

Title photo: (c) Pietro de Paolis


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