Pet-lovers, allow us to introduce you to the Cockatiel.
Warning: By the time you’re done reading this, you may have grown a bit lovey-dovey over these guys.
Loving, friendly and clever, a little bird told us.
With a combination of traits like that, Cockatiels are like the perfect date – or family member, for that matter. All that charm, and it’s really no wonder these golden-faced friends are so popular. Wait, it gets better: Cockatiels are also resilient, clean, curious, lively, plus easily trained and bred, without too many problems. And of the 50+ species of native parrots in Australia, Cockatiels are some of the more gentle birds, in case you were wondering. (We know it’s a shock.)
Birds of a feather – like family.
With such well-rounded personalities, Cockatiels make great family pets. But because they’re so easy-going, you’ll just want to be careful about keeping them with other pet birds, as they can easily be bulldozed by Budgerigars – or even Lovebirds, if you can believe that.
Cockatiels speak volumes.
Cockatiels have hiiiiiigh-pitched voices. That said, they’re are not always the very best talkers, which could be a good thing, depending on how you look at it. But with lots of patience and repetition, you can train them to chat, if you want to. Or, if you’d prefer more of a strong, silent or bookish type, we recommend a female. They tend to keep their beaks shut, much more than the males. (Alright, feathered fellas – keep the giggles to yourselves.)
Training Cockatiels by hand.
There’s lots of fun to be had with your Cockatiel, and training is the best place to start. A great first-trick to try is getting Tweety to come out of his cage and step onto your hand, on-command. Keeping in mind Cockatiels are territorial birds, you probably don’t want to put your hand in the cage (they can bite, if bothered). Just place your finger at the door and say, ‘Up’ or ‘Come on’. Make sure these words are easy for your feathered friend to understand. And just to help him learn, it’s best not to let the little guy come out unless he steps up, without biting.
For more feathers and fodder on Cockatiels, you can fly on over to the Cockatiel organisation website, complete with articles, membership and flocks of links. Or swoop down on the Australian National Cockatiel Society, a non-profit club that supports any pet-lover interested in aviculture.