Cockatoos As Pets: Everything You Should Know

Are you thinking of keeping cockatoos as pets? It is a great idea. But before bringing them home, you should know some important things about them. They are mischievous birds. They are very much affectionate and want your attention 24/7. They do not understand that you have a life apart from them. As, we have mentioned earlier, they need a lot of attention. If they do not get that and feel neglected then they became cranky. 

Let’s take a look at this bird and get some more information about them:

Origin and history of cockatoos

In the year of 1850, the first cockatoos were discovered by European sailors. The European sailors used to travel to Indonesia and other Eastern countries and this brought them in contact with these birds. The native people of the countries kept them as pets for so many decades. Cockatoos occupy a wide range of habitats from forests to mangroves. 

There are total 21 species of cockatoos. The one of the most common species are Moluccan, Umbrella, Goffin’s and bare-eyed cockatoos. 


Colours of the cockatoo

These birds are available in variety of colour. But these are not as vibrant and colourful as parrots. You can get these birds in three different colours such as black, grey and white as well. But in many species, you can also get the colours like yellow, red and pink. You will have to know the fact that galah and Major Mitchell’s cockatoo have some patches of pink. 

But all the species have variety of coloured ring around bare eyes. The palm coloured birds have large and red patch of bare skin. It rings the eye portion of the bird and also covers some part of the face. There are some other species with rings around the eye portion including the bare-eyed and blue-eyed cockatoo

Price of the bird

In the United States, these are very common birds. These birds are mostly rescued, adapted and bought from various rescue centres, adaption centres and through online as well. The price of these birds mainly varies from $500 to $4000. The amount is totally dependent on the various species. There are some rare species like black palm cockatoo. It can cost up to $25000 from the breeders. 

If you want to go in the route of breeder, then you should make sure that they are reputable and trust-worthy as well. Before buying any of these birds, you will have to make sure about their diet, exercises, behaviour and other important qualities. 

If you want to buy one for your home, then you should aware about the fact that bright eyes of the bird are the sign of healthy one. Not only this, but also the clean feathers, full crops are the signs of their good health. 

Cockatoo care

These birds are well-known for their outgoing personalities and soft feathers. They are the great choice as pets for the committed and experienced bird owners. But these birds need diligent care. Before bringing them home, you will have to make sure that you are comfortable with their personality traits and other things. 

The housing requirement of the bird is very much important. They need the well-constructed cage. So, you need to have a cage that is not smaller than 24″*36″*48″. You will have to buy strong cages made with wrought iron or stainless steel. Apart from the spacious cage, you will have to give them a lot of toys to play. You should remember the fact that they are aggressive chewers and tend to destroy things. You can give them the softwood toys, ropes, bells and all. You can also give them some hanging toys to play. 

The umbrella cockatoos are long-time commitment for the owners. This is not a good choice as a first bird pet and not good pet choice for the kids as well. They need 10 to 12 hours uninterrupted sleep at the night time. They awake with the sun also let you know the time of waking up. 

When you bring them in a new home, then they want non-stop attention. They are basically attention-seekers. They are fun-loving, intelligent and energetic birds as well. 


Exercise for the birds

They love to chew things. So, you should give them chewable toys. You can give them softwood toys, tree branches, vegetable tanned leather, rope toys, bells and cardboards as well. All these toys should be bird-safe. You will have to give special attention to this matter. You will also give your cockatoo three to four hours of playing time outside the cage. They need at least an hour of interaction. Large birds can also do gyms and meet their daily exercise requirements. 

Food for these birds

They need a healthy and high-quality diet. Food for these birds should be nutritious enough. Wild species are looking for nuts and seeds all the day. You can also give them coconuts and green crops as well. Their foods should not be boring to eat. They love the foods like avi-cakes, pellet-berries and nutri-berries. You can also give those birds cooked grains such as oats, barley, brown rice sweet potato, vegetable pasta and all. 

Varied species have different needs of foods. They can also eat fresh vegetables and fruits. You can also include bird pellets in their diet. But you should not give them fried foods, chocolates and chips as well. They tend to like to play and toss with their food items. If you want to keep your bird in right shape and size then you will have to go to the right track. Most of the birds want their food in the morning and right before the dusk. The feeding schedule is very much important for these pet birds. 

The average lifespan of these birds is near about 40 years. The larger like Moluccan species can live up to 80 years or so. But above all, good care and nutrition are very much needed in order to ensure their long life. If you want a cockatoo then you should be an experienced bird-owner or else you will have to work with them in order to understand the all traits of this bird. Overall, these birds are excellent choice as pets. 

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