I don’t believe newly hatched GCC is being fed. Help!


New member
Feb 24, 2023
Two green cheek conures and babies
I have a pair of green cheek conures. They are about 3-4 years of age and they recently laid eggs, but destroyed them. The female then laid eggs again and took care of these. Now one hatched yesterday and was peeping last night. Today I don’t hear any noise, but it’s still moving. I don’t believe she is feeding her chick. She sits on it with the eggs, but I haven’t even seen her even eat. The female squawks at the male when he tries to come into the nesting box. I am afraid the baby will die, but everything I have been reading gives me mixed advice on what to do. Thanks in advance for any help I can get!


Well-known member
Jun 25, 2019
Seattle WA
Kirby - OWA, 33yrs old (2019-)
Sammy - YNA, 45 yrs old (2022-2023)
RIP Cricket - Cockatiel (2019-2022)
If the parents are not feeding it, you are going to need to start doing so ASAP.

Here are a couple threads with info about what it takes to hand raise a baby, the first a baby budgie from day one and the second a general thread for folks who have acquired unweaned babies and don’t know what to do:

You will need parrot formula (even big box stores sell it, and if the baby hasn’t eaten yet you need to feed it ASAP or it will die), and a small spoon or syringe (but with a syringe you risk over feeding them and causing them to aspirate if you don’t know what you are doing). You can use a meat thermometer or candy thermometer to check the temp of the formula and will need to do that throughout the feeding. Baby birds need to be fed AROUND THE CLOCK, every 2-3 hours. You have to make fresh formula every time, and the formula will have instructions for how dilute to make the feed based on the chick’s age. Should also have info about the temperature to serve it at, it’s very important it stays at the correct temperature throughout the feeding.

You will also need somewhere warm and humid to feed them, as they cannot eat when they are cold and they cannot regulate their temperature. A small bathroom with the heat cranked WAY up and running the shower on hot can work (obviously, don’t get the baby wet, the shower is just to make it humid). If the mom is sitting you can return the chick to her after feeds, but if she stops sitting you will need an incubator to maintain temp and humidity - a heat lamp or similar won’t do the trick, the temp will vary too much and you risk overheating or chilling the chick.

Before you start all that, make 100% sure he’s not being fed. Is his crop empty? Look up photos of day old parrot chicks with full crops - they look bulging and distended! If you aren’t seeing that on this guy then the mom isn’t feeding them and you are running out of time to intervene.

Finally - I have to state I have never hand fed a baby parrot. I keep my male and female separate (although they are from different subspecies and I’m not sure they could breed if they wanted to), because I don’t have the equipment on hand to hand feed a clutch of baby birds every 2 hours for weeks. If you can’t save this one, and you know you aren’t going to be able to help with the babies in the future, do your little feathered friends a favor, and switch out any laid eggs for dummy eggs! Also remove all nesting sites and things that can encourage them to get broody (happy huts, darkened areas of the cage, etc). This is assuming they’ve bred on accident.

If you’re breeding them on purpose, please intervene with the new baby ASAP, and be ready to make fast decisions about this sort of thing in the future - I know it can be hard to know if you’re making the right call, but if the mom isn’t feeding them you have hours before it’s too late. Sometimes your avian vet can help you if you aren’t sure, but since transporting newly hatched chicks safely is almost impossible and most vets won’t give advice over the phone, you’re probably on your own, unless you know a local breeder who can help you.

Not saying that to be a big meanie! It makes me so sad to see these threads and know the baby probably won’t make it, and that it maybe could have if the circumstances were different. These little guys didn’t ask to be brought into this world or raised in captivity, and their lives and health are our responsibility.

Wishing you the very best with your birds and your new baby.

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