Cockatiels are very attractive birds, with their lovely cheek spots and lavish headdress. They are commonly taken as pets, being very sociable and affectionate feathered fellows. They are gentle and very sensitive to sudden hand moves, so they are not suitable pets for very young children. They produce various sounds and can be quite noisy, as well. Cockatiels need to be treated tenderly and with love.
Those wonderful parrots originate from Australia. They were discovered by the end of eighteen century there, but they’ve reached their popularity in twentieth century. Cockatiels still live in the wild in Australia. You could see them circling the skies in search for water. They love to rest and chill beside large waters and hide from cruel Australian heat. Cockatiels can talk and whistle; male ones are usually more talkative than females.
Cockatiels are extremely sociable and they don’t like to be alone. They love to interact with their owners, so you must be able to spend time with your chatty friend. Having a cockatiel makes a serious commitment. Those beautiful parrots are not a decoration for your home. They need regular avian vet checks, proper living conditions and good food. Cockatiels are particularly sensitive to draft, so keep it away from drafty areas, such as air conditioning vents. A cage for your pet must suit its size; a cockatiel is bird of a medium size, so it requires spacey cage.
Cockatiels could live up to 25 years. However, an average life span reaches up to 15. So, it’s the same as you have a four legged pet. Cockatiels could be really dear, adorable and completely irresistible pets. If treated right, they could make you wonderful friends.
What do they eat?
When it comes to food, cockatiels require different types of food. A well balanced nutritional plan for cockatiels must consist of various viands. Your pet might even prefer eating rice. The golden rule is to let your parrot choose what it likes and never force it to eat things it doesn't find tasteful. There are cases cockatiels like to have only pellets and seeds, although it’s more than desirable to eat different viands. If that is the case with your pet, you shouldn’t worry, it is safe and ok.
Fresh water is an essential. Your parrot should always have pure, fresh water available and regularly changed.
Seeds and pellets
Many experts would suggest you should feed your cockatiel pellets as its basic food.
However, you could also feed it seeds, as long as its menu is diverse. Some cockatiels actually lived up to more than twenty years being on a diet based on variety. So, feeding seeds is completely ok, as long as your parrot has other different types of food on its regular menu. When feeding it sees, always make sure they are clean and free of dangerous fungus or such. You can rinse it in warm soapy water and let them completely dry before serving. Always supply your cockatiel with new portion of seeds; those birds are very thorough in extracting seeds from their husks, so their bowel could actually be full of inedible husks and no food at all, if you don’t pay regular attention.
Fruits and vegetables
Cockatiels do enjoy eating various types of fruits and vegetables. They should be served in small portions, chopped or shredded. Offer your parrot a small piece of it, to see if it likes it or not. Always wash fruits and vegetables thoroughly, to make sure it is as free of pesticides and chemicals as it can be.
Cockatiel friendly fruits are various. Those are apple, mango, papaya, banana, grapes, nectarine, orange, apricot, cantaloupe and more. The only thing you should worry about fruits are their seeds. Fruits seeds contain cyanide, a toxic element that could be very dangerous to cockatiels. Cyanide is hazardous to most of our pets and us, as well.
However, since cockatiels are small compared to us, they need less of cyanide to get serious problems. Therefore you should always pit all the fruits and make sure it contains no seeds at all, before feeding your parrot.
Vegetables are very good for cockatiels. There are carrots, broccoli, beet greens, dried tomatoes, corn, endive, kale, spinach, sprouts, pumpkin, sweet potatoes, mustard greens, turnip greens and such. While most of vegetables are better if given raw, cockatiels prefer pumpkin, sweet potatoes and yams cooked. Without additions and spices, of course.
Cockatiels can safely have some meat as well. Given in small amounts meat can be good for them. Choose only high quality chicken and beef meat or some fish. Cockatiel also benefit from boiled or scrambled eggs and some diary products, such as yogurt and fresh cheese, like cottage.
Another good source of proteins for cockatiels are peanuts. Those birds are omnivores and they need a lot of different nutrients to grow and stay healthy, as you can see.
There are viands strictly forbidden to feed your parrot. Keep it away from spicy and salty food, like garlic, onion, salt, caffeine, sugar and sugary food, fatty snacks and treats and such. Avoid avocados, chocolate and human food in general.
Learn more about pets on our site. Ever wondered how you should bathe rabbits? There's no need to look further now!