Friday, January 22, 2010

Making Breeding Simple - Conditioning Vitamin E


Three factors: light, conditioning, and weather working in concert bring birds into full breeding condition. In part 1 of this series, we looked at simple ways to control the number of hours of daylight and how to lengthen the days to brings about hormonal changes that moves the bird into its natural breeding cycle. In part 2, I will begin looking at some minimal techniques to help bring birds into breeding condition. First, let's take a look at vitamin E.

Vitamin E - An Easy Way To Condition Canaries For Breeding

In addition to the previously identified hens need for minerals and especially calcium, better breeding results are achieved when the cock and hen receive high doses of the fertility vitamin E, during the conditioning period prior to pairing. Traditional this was done by adding fortified wheat germ oil to the seed. But the amount to give and when to give it was quite a guessing game!

A few years ago, I discovered an easier more effective product, ABBA high fertility water soluble vitamin E. One day a week six weeks before pairing, I prepare the ABBA vitamin E as directed by measuring 1/2 teaspoon of the powder and dissolving it in 1 gallon water. I then fill the cocks drinkers and leave that as the only source of water for 24 hours. After 24 hours, the drinkers are dumped and refilled with clean water.

After three weeks of the ABBA vitamin E once weekly treatment, the cocks will be singing vigorously and showing some signs of wanting to breed. Now is the time to abruptly lengthen the hours of day light as described in the previous post. And on the same day, I start the hens on the one day a week, 24 hour treatment with the ABBA vitamin E. This continues for the cock until I am finished breeding him but must be stopped on the hen when she lays her first egg to avoid premature hen recycling.

Many breeders do not realize the importance of controlling when and how much the hen gets of the vitamin E. If a hen is overdosed with vitamin E, she abandons the nest without going through the normal process of sitting, hatching and feeding her chicks .

In the unlikely event that a hen fails to recycle for her second clutch, she can, however, again receive the weekly vitamin E treatment.

10 comments:

Anonymous said...

why do you give your birds the vit E only 1 day a week

Linda Hogan said...

With vitamin E being a fat soluble vitamin, excess is stored in the body fat. This makes it tricky to dose correctly and not overdose.

The beauty of this product is that when used one day a week for 24 hours in the water, the dose is exactly right, not too much or too little. (Sounds like a Bud Light commercial!) LOL

When breeders overdose on vitamin E, they often start out gang busters and then suddenly everything turns wrong...Hens won't sit, production suddenly drops to nil and the first advice I give is stop all the extra stuff you are doing as we first must know if you are overdosing your birds!!

Linda Hogan said...

And you stop giving it to hens once they lay their first egg and thus avoiding overdose that results in numerous breeding problems.

Lac Viet. said...

Thank you for writing such a great article with very useful information!

Anonymous said...

thank you linda, i love this place

Catherine in Tx said...

Linda, I have a question about keeping the cock bird in condition with vit E when he is in with a hen setting...
I discontinued the Vit E after her first egg, as per your instructions. So she is nearly ready to sett (today was egg 3), and he is in the cage with her, feeding. How do I give him his Vit E without him feeding it to her? He wouldn't take it in the water, so I sprinkled it on soak seed.

Anonymous said...

I have two gold finch the male is singing and is ready for breeding but the famel doesn't let him go on so whats the solution is the famel needs vitamin e

colla said...

Wher available to buy this vitamine

Unknown said...

Can I give my canary jamieson vitamin e

Linda Hogan said...

I get my vitamin E from ABBA products in New Jersey. It is excellent conditioner. Alternatives such as wheat germ and bee pollen also condition.