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Cockatiels

Updated on November 15, 2015

The Cockatiel is a small parrot bird of the Cacatuidae family. These birds are originally from the outback regions of the Australian continent. Their preferred habitat includes Australian wetlands, Scrublands and bush land. They usually have an average size of about 12 to 14 inches long. Healthy adult cockatiels usually weighs between 88 to 178 grams. They are generally very social and gentle birds and tend to adapt very well in most households. They have an average life span of about 16 to 25 years. They have over the recent years, become very popular in the United States as most people discover and appreciate these birds.

Like some other cockatoos, as for example the Sulphur-crested Cockatoo, the cockatiel has an erectible crest. Cockatiels and cockatoos in general also share other features, such as the facial feathers covering the sides of the beak, which are rarely - if ever - found outside the Cacatuidae family. In contrast to most cockatoos, the cockatiel has long tail feathers, roughly making up half of its total length. The cockatiel's distinctive pointed yellow crest is held erect when startled or excited, while a crest slightly tilted indicates a relaxed state of mind.

Cockatiels are extremely social birds. They have a need for social interaction. A single bird will get more attached to its keeper but if you are not at home a lot it is best to get two birds. It is a fact that two birds of the same sex get along just as well as a mixed pair. Even more so if the cockatiels were introduced while they are still young.

The plumage is generally mid-grey, lighter underneath, with an orange cheek patch and a prominent white blaze on the wings. A row of yellowish spots can be found underneath the wings of female cockatiels, but not on the males. Female Lutinos also have barred tail feathers. Both the cock and the hen have yellow facial feathers: the female has a yellow wash around the beak and eye, in the male, yellow covers most of the head and the fore part of the crest. Male cockatiels are very protective and nurturing of their offspring and are known to be very capable of raising their newborns if the mother is unable to.

Males have great vocal abilities and females are fairly quiet. Females are more aggressive and they are more likely to hiss and bite. If you put a mirror in the cage, a female looses its interest faster than a male.


Source

Screaming

Like Cockatoos, cockatiels tend to be very vocal when they wake up in the morning and at night. They will also be very vocal if you have been out for a while and you come home to them, this is their way to greet you, and let you know that they are very happy you are home to play with them.

Cockatiels can also get very spoiled, and can learn very fast how to control you. They do this in the same way their "bigger brothers" tend to as well.. with excessive screaming. If you come to the cage every time your cockatiel screams, your cockatiel will understand that screaming equals to you coming over. You do this a few times and your cockatiel will develop the ability to use their screams as a "remote control" to make you come over.

It is important not to reward such behaviour, it is better to ignore it instead to show your bird that he cannot get attention with such actions. Try to teach your bird other things like talking, whispering or other more productive ways to "voice" himself. Always reward good behaviour with either treats, or more attention. Try to look and find out why your pet is screaming by watching or monitoring his behaviour before he starts going on a rampage. Most important of all though, is to accept that when acquiring such a pet, they tend to be loud at times. If you don't like such high pitched noises it is better to opt for a different pet.

Tips For Teaching Your Cockatiel To Talk

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    • coki252000 profile imageAUTHOR

      coki252000 

      9 years ago

      I'm so happy to hear that it helped.. Like with everything in life.. it takes one step at a time so the progress he's already made confirms that it's going in the right direction. I added a few links above to help you out with the mutation question and anything else in general.. Always happy to help :)

    • profile image

      shahna 

      9 years ago

      Yeah he did thankyou he seems to be fitting in a lot more as well and doesn't seem to be biting as much as he did we still some trouble getting him in when its time for bed, but it seems these steps have really helped ill inform you of his progress as timw goes on thankyou again its much appreciated :)

    • coki252000 profile imageAUTHOR

      coki252000 

      9 years ago

      I don't think that they do but I could be wrong..I am not all that informed on mutations so sorry that I can't be of much help in that section.. Did he get more comfortable with his cage?

    • profile image

      shahna 

      9 years ago

      Sorry 'NORMAL GREYS'

    • profile image

      shahna 

      9 years ago

      I would also like to know do nirnal greys have bright yellow tail feathers or is there a mutation in him?

    • profile image

      shahna 

      9 years ago

      Thanks heaps :)

    • coki252000 profile imageAUTHOR

      coki252000 

      9 years ago

      They can get very attached to the owner especially at such a delicate age ... is he locked up for long periods of time? I would try hanging a toy in his cage that attracts his attention and gives him something to do when in the cage. Try leaving it open letting him play with the toy and be able to fly to you at any time, to teach him to get comfortable with the cage.

    • profile image

      shahna 

      9 years ago

      I also have just one more question, he loves the attention and i have found that when he wants to come outt heopens his cage and flaps his wings vigoursly to get my attention he loves to explore and once he is done he climbs up next to me on my pillow grindes his beak and goes to sleep, but when i try putting him back in gis cage he bites me very hard and does not want to leave my pillow do you have any advice as to what i can do????

    • coki252000 profile imageAUTHOR

      coki252000 

      9 years ago

      anytime.. would love to hear from you when you know for sure. :)

    • profile image

      shahna 

      9 years ago

      Thankyou very much for your help. when i first got him his crest was grey but like i said is starting to turn bright yellow so i do believe he is a male. but i guesa i wont fully know until he has his first molt. but until then ive finally chosen a name for him its 'hunter' :) thankyou again for your feedback and the link you provided. when i know for sure ill let you know if our theroy is correct. have a great day

    • coki252000 profile imageAUTHOR

      coki252000 

      9 years ago

      Hi shahna,

      congratulations on getting a wonderful bird specie, they are very intelligent as you can already tell from the behaviour described above. As for the sex of the bird, from my point of view I think it's a male as the crest is mainly bright yellow which differs with females. They also tend to learn and talk faster than the females.

      If you want to learn more on how to about cocktateils in general visit: http://avianweb.com, they have a wide range of information on all types of birds.

      Hope I could help :)

    • profile image

      shahna 

      9 years ago

      Hi, i recently bought a baby cockatiel. It is 8 weeks old and i was wondering if you could pleade help me know the sex. in its crest it has bright yellow at thd roots then fades into a dull yellow and underneath its tail it is bright yellow with black spots, the behaviour is also strange for a baby and seems to be learning rather quickly? It knows how to open its cage and get out, it can also wolf whistle and knows ths word scratch. it alsi enjoys streching his wings and feet at the same time as if it is showing ogg keep in mind that it is only 8 weeks old van you give me any clue as to the sex of it.

    • coki252000 profile imageAUTHOR

      coki252000 

      10 years ago

      Thanks Casey I am glad you like it. They are very beautiful animals. Let me know how it goes if you really do get one. All the best

    • Casey White profile image

      Mike and Dorothy McKenney 

      10 years ago from United States

      I love these beautiful birds...you make me want to go out and find one! Your writing is very good, keep it up. Voted you up and will be following your future writings.

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