How can I tell if the eggs are fertile?
1) Wait until the birds have been sitting on the eggs for a about a week.
2) Hold them (the eggs, not the birds!) against a bright light (like a light bulb).
3) If they seem clear ("transparent"), then they are no good. If you see
small veins, or the egg is dark, then the egg is probably fertile: put it back and wait.
If the egg has been dark for a longer time than the expected incubation period, the chick
could have died in the egg or you could just have a rotten egg on your hands (so to
speak), and you will have to discard the egg. It is best, however, to wait quite a while
before doing so unless you have a lot of experience looking at eggs or are really certain
of how long the birds have been sitting on the eggs. The normal incubation period of
domesticated zebra finches is around 13 days. Zebra finches usually start roosting when
the third egg is laid.
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