Cockatiels are a medium size bird. They live in the wild, but are often kept as pets. These birds come in different color mutations. Cockatiels are a great pet if the proper love and time is met.
Cockatiels need a lot of time and devotion to make them tame. They usually live for about 15-20 years. Some cases have even reported them to live a lot longer then that. Make sure you are prepared for this. If you have a tame cockatiel you could find your self having a new best friend. Some will whistle different tunes that you teach it. Others will even say a few words for you. The males tend to be the talkers and whistlers. Although some females have been reported to do so. The best way to tell if you have a male or female is by DNA testing. Numerous places will do this for a small fee. You can even do this your self and send away for the results.
Cockatiels need a medium size cage. The bar spacing on the cage needs to be not so big. You would not want your new found friend to get stuck or hurt. There cages should be stocked with a few colorful toys. Maybe a swing or two. A water dish and a few food dishes. If you want a healthy happy cockatiel, food variety is a must. In one food dish you would want to keep a good seed mixture in it. This is there main course. They will go through and pick out their favorites and toss the rest on the floor. In the second food dish Place some sort of pellets in it. This will help maintain a good balance in food, since all pellets have the same nutrition in it. The third you will want to place a gravel and oyster mix. This helps them digest their food. You might want to have a 4th feeder to feed them fresh fruits and vegetable. A calcium block added to the side of the cage will be much appreciated. Add a spay of millet once a week and you have a happy bird.
When taking your new friend out of the cage please be aware of the dangers around the house. I would suggest in getting your birds wings clipped so that he can not fly around and get hurt. They do not pay close attention when they fly and it could end up deadly. Your bird will love to come out and watch TV with you. They enjoy cuddle time, and often love their heads scratched. You can teach your bird to give kisses very easily. Cockatiels love to shred things. Specially paper, be advised of this during play time. It will not harm them to shred paper, But it could hurt you if they shred something important. Also another thing that they love to play with is straws. This will provide lots of fun to them. Most will pick up the straw and drop it over the edge, wait for you to pick it up and give it back. Then they will do it again. It’s a game to them.
Cleaning your Cockatiels cage is a must. I keep newspaper in the bottom tray and empty that every other day. Once a week I take the cage apart and scrub all dishes, toys, perches, cage bars and anything else that is in there. I use plain dish soap and water. Rinse well as your bird loves to chew on everything. Some birds will take a shower with you, others will not. A light mist with warm water from a spray bottle once a week will keep your bird clean. They will take care of the rest. They will bath in their water bowl also.
If you plan on having more then one cockatiel in the cage you will need to have a larger cage. Both bird should be able to move around freely without bumping into each other. I would suggest if you plain on having a cockatiel and you have lots of time to spend with them only get one. When you get two in their you will lose that special bond you and your bird share. The two birds will bond and you wont be so special anymore. If you don’t have a lot of time to spend with your bird though they can become very lonely and a second bird might be the solution.
Cockatiels come in different color mutations. The more rare the mutation is, the more expensive the bird will be. There are the main color mutations and then different shades of these.
Normal Grey is the first mutation. Most colors have started from this. A normal Grey will usually have an all Grey body with a yellow face after maturity. They should also have white along the edge of each wing. no other color should be visible. Cinnamon mutation is similar to the Grey. Some areas on the bird will have brown to a tan color on them also. Lutino’s have a yellow face with orange cheeks. The rest of the body should be a white with hints of a pale yellow. The fallow mutation is a mixture of a very pale cinnamon, The face being yellow and red eyes. Silver color is the whole bird is a silver color with red eyes. Albino is all white. No other color should be visible at all. Eyes are red. The rest of the colors are all mixed from these base colors.