Animal Stories - People Talking About Cockatoos


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kim - 2011-11-29
Please tell me how to get my one year old cocktoo to stop picking her fathers. She is a very loveable bird. I love her so much.

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  • Charlie Roche - 2011-11-29
    You need many toys and much stimulation to keep a cockatoo from picking his feathers. You also need to spritz him with water or a bird bath mixture. A cockatoo needs a lot of attention, many toys, a lot of time outside the cage, stimulation to keep them busy - cartoons on the TV, music and they do watch TV - cartoons with singing Kung Fu Panda, Rio, Surfs Up etc. It is one of the hardest things to prevent and almost impossible to get it stopped. You can also speak to your vet about a collar which sometimes helps but you don't want to do that if it completely upsets the bird. A cockatoo needs to be with you and are not content on their own and so they pluck.
  • Rose - 2012-01-27
    I have had great luck using foraging techniques recommended by Dr Speer. Our goffin went from picking and destroying almost all her feathers except tail feathers, to almost completely feathered for 80% of the year. I cut paper towel tubes in half and place all over her cage and then wrap small pieces of food (Harrisons, roudy, and fruits and veggies) in paper towels and then place in the tubes all around her cage. I also place paper towels without food in the tubes, so not every attempt gets food. It is easy and inexpensive way of foraging. She barely plays with toys anymore, but she will do puzzles, pen boxes, and hang upside down to try to get food. Also, we feed her no seeds, and all food must be foraged for. Foraging also reduced her constant craving for attention. Now after being out of her cage for a short time, she will want to go and back to her cage and "do stuff". Good Luck! Foraging is fun!
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Animal-World info on Umbrella Cockatoo
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Glenda - 2012-01-12
How long after your birds breed, do they lay eggs??

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  • Charlie Roche - 2012-01-12
    Birds are breeding because the egg is already there coming down. Usually 3 - 4 eggs and they sorta look like peeled grapes. The birds breed and the eggs are fertilized and as the eggs come out the cloaca, the calcium is deposited around the egg and forms the shell. Now I can't tell you how long it takes for the fertilized egg to complete its journey but somewhere around day 1 - 2 the first egg is laid, then the next day or two the second and the next day or two the third.
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Animal-World info on Lessor Sulphur-crested Cockatoo
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Bkrbabe221 - 2010-04-11
I "inherited" a LSC from a wonderful, loving couple who were getting too old to care for her. Not knowing a thing about birds (but being a die-hard animal lover), we took her in and did a lot of research. She is charming, intelligent and plays well with a pit bull and black lab (yes, really!!). She talks, she plays and is charming. Not for those carefree with their animals and not for those with children since they do require so much time. It's like having a perpetual 5 year old, but she's so funny. I never thought I would like birds, but I am a true lover now.

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  • Charlie Roche - 2012-01-10
    That is all it took for me too. I got just one bird and fell in love and then I got another and another etc They are wonderful. Sulphur Crest is a great companion and a fun fella. Lots of luck and enjoy.
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Animal-World info on Citron-crested Cockatoo
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paige - 2010-03-14
I'm looking into getting a cockatoo and am willing to spend the time with one but am I ok to go to work for 9-10 hours at night or will that be too much time alone? I have been looking all day and can't find anything that says how much time is really ideal for spending with a cockatoo all I can find is how important it is to spend the time. Can anyone help me with this question Please!
-Paige

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  • mike - 2010-03-16
    It really depends on the bird. birds are like humans they all have different personalities so there will naturally be needy ones, noisy ones, quiet ones..... etc. Cockatoos are people birds, they really really like human attention but I feel like most of the time because they are so affectionate the label given to cockatoos is exaggerated. ALL birds need attention just like a toddler however, some require less. If youre worried about it dont get a bird, or better yet hang out at your local exotic bird store for an hour a day or a couple hours a week and see what bird chooses you. I guarantee you'll make time for the one bird that chooses you :-)
  • Island mom - 2010-04-15
    It's good you're asking! No! Especially a cockatoo! Even my cockatiel breeds more than that! No pet should be alone for that amount of time! Not even a cat! But Cockatoos will be miserable! So do like I did and wait! There's no way you can have little children or be that busy and own a cockatoo! Um a stay home mom with two teenagers and other pets!

    I adopted a Citron Cockatoo a few months ago! I adore her but she is a ton of work! I had read and researched everything and I am still shocked by the neediness!

    So please! Get a cool fish tank! They are incredibly enjoyable and relaxing! Any other pet you aquire will need more attention than you can give being gone that long.

    All the best! Oh, one more thing! My Cockatoo screams! Really really loud!!! Until you have o e you won't believe it! I live her but it drives everyone else crazy!
  • Ali - 2010-04-17
    Cockatoos do require a lot of time! I think it varies to some degree with each bird. If you are working at night, I think you will be okay, just be sure to spend time with your bird during the day. Birds have to sleep too! It's a good idea to keep a lot of toys in their cage especially wood toys they can chew up. As you've probably heard, they do love to chew and they also need to have something to keep their minds busy since they can also become bored and start feather plucking. The best advice I could give to you would be for you to contact the nearest AVIAN vet & speak with them about specific requirements for cockatoos. Besides, you will also need a good avian vet should you decide to go ahead and get a bird!
  • Mike Scott - 2011-01-13
    Paige,
    You need to spend 3-4 hrs of quality time with him or her. They must be out of the cage on a perch for at least the same amount of time. If not have a spouse for them (another bird to mate with will provide company). If they don't get the attention have toys and things that can occupy their time so they won't pull out their own feathers being bored to death.
  • Mike Scott - 2011-01-13
    Paige, As far as your work goes at night that is OK, as long as you can put them to sleep before you leave, when it is lights out they can be happily alone in their cage from dark to morning without noise as long as they don't hear you stirring around. Once they're up usually around sunrise they like company. Leave them alone for 5 min. and hello they will call you back.
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Animal-World info on Lessor Sulphur-crested Cockatoo
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Jillian - 2010-05-21
Hello:

I work in an office in where one of my bosses is obsessed with birds. He bought a Cockatoo (this kind) about four years ago. Every day I dreaded coming to work because of his loud screams all day! I never took time to research them until now when I was ready to quit over this bird. I am so happy I have found sites such as these. In the past I have tried to take him out once a week, but reading all these articles has shown me that he must be played with everyday. I have taken his cage out from the window where everyone comes and stares at him and tries to play with him. I now know that he was just scared. He has calmed down so much and is not screaming as much. I know I have a long way to go but I am going to stick it through!

thank you!

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Animal-World info on Citron-crested Cockatoo
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Vickie Sipes - 2007-08-27
I have been given a citron-crested cockatoo by a family member who just couldn't for health reasons keep him any more. I named him big dude. He had pulled just about all his feathers out because he had lost his mate. My aunt passed away and gave him to her son who has now given him to me along with a green parrot. He has just started to fluff again. I can't wait to see how pretty he will be when his feathers come back in. He hasn't had any for`3 years. He does screech and hiss at me but he also loves to be petted. He shakes the door of the cage to get out, I was told to keep it padlocked because he can get out and he has when I change the water and food. Hilarious. He sees the keys and goes nuts. I have only had him for a week and I think he is the funniest thing I have seen in along time. I wish I knew what to do to tame him further. He bows his head to be petted and he lets me rub his whole body, also he raises his wings to allow me to rub beneath them also. He appears to be really intelligent. It took him a whole three days to start imitating my alarm clock by beating his roost with his foot. Funny! Also the green parrot is basically viscious I am more afraid of it than big dude.

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  • Rick Houchen - 2011-01-14
    I own 1 U2 and 2 Goffin 2's, and we are considering re-homing a Citron that has been owned by the same person for the past 9 years but due to financial reasons she is having to down size her flock, he is a beautiful bird based on photo's and we are going to see him next weekend, my question to you is how is your bird "now", has he gotten over the stressful move and has he bonded to you? That is my concern as well as the current owner on how Sydney will take the transfer from his current home to our home, he will have lots of interaction with me and my wife and toys plus a large bird room that he will share with my other 3 toos, please give me feed back on how your citron is doing now?
  • Elizabeth - 2011-04-11
    Hey Rick, IDK if anyone responded to your post, but I gave a home to A citron, her old owners had to give her up, they had her since a baby and she was then 12 years old. I was told she prefered men. Well once I got her home I kept her cage in the bedroom for quarantine from my other birds, I would let her out of the cage and would just hang out in the room talking to her. I didnt push trying to pet her, and she did hiss/act tough during this time. Within 2-3 days max she wanted or needed to be pet so badly that she approached me and put her head down for scratches. Once she felt that I was able to give "approprite" scratches it was done, she let me pet her anywhere, handle her completely etc, and I am a woman. She did seem bonded with my boyfriend stronger than with me, but that never stopped me or her from bonding. (I am the main caregiver to the birds) Today, 3yrs after we adopted her, I feel her bond is stronger to me than my boyfriend, (its not I'm just saying to let you know the one sex preference isnt set in stone

    So I feel the cockatoo's transition easier than other parrots... my african grey took months to let me handle him. I adopted him (8 y/o) 4 yrs ago.

    I do hope you respond, I'd love to know if you adopted the citron and if you found the same to be true
  • Charlie Roche - 2011-04-11
    It sounds like you are doing an excellent job of taming him. Just keep on doing what you are doing. Go slow. Let him eat from your hand. When you are ready, feed him with one hand and say "UP" and see if he will get on your other hand. The idea is to gradually get him away from his terrirotry (cage) and more into yours (perch). You're petting his head and he is lifting his wings. He lost his mate and he was obviously a pet at one point based on his behavior. I have a 26 year old cockatoo mate - good luck and let us know.
  • Linda Fleming - 2012-01-08
    I have had oliver my citron cockatoo for Ten years now and you're right they are very funny and loving pets. I give her milk bone doggy biscuits and she dunks them in her water before eating them. I had thought that oliver was a male, which the pet shop had told me she was. Seven years later she laid an egg I found it when I came home from work at the bottom of her cage. I didn't have the heart to change her name because she says her name all the time so I figure what the heck! Oliver, Olivia - she's happy and at least now I know I have a female. The green parrot sounds like it may have been mistreated in its past.
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Animal-World info on Umbrella Cockatoo
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mary - 2011-12-29
I have am 8 month old Cockatoo and I think I have over bonded with her. I let her out to play and all she wants is me to hold her.....Any ideas on how to break her from this??? She is very sweet and no bad habits but I try to let her play on the floor or table and she just climbs right up my leg to get to me.

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  • Charlie Roche - 2011-12-30
    That is a cockatoo - that is their personality and you haven't over bonded. I don't even think it is possible to over bond with a cockatoo. She isn't going to play on the floor - too low and they can't see what is going on. If you sit on the floor with her and play she will but other wise no. Same thing with a table. I would try a free standing perch cholla wood or sanded manzanita with a bunch of chew toys she can eat. Have the perch so she can see you and place her on the perch. It might take a few times but she should get used to the perch and then you can read, watch TV or do homework and she will play/sit contentedly. She is a baby now - 8 months and she will get a little more independent but not a whole lot.
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zhyomie - 2011-11-06
I'm a new owner to a 13 year old cockatoo who's name is Ricky. She picks her feathers and the week that have had her I haven't seen her bathe herself. Is there anything I should do? I've also noticed she has lots of dander. She is my first bird.

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  • Charlie Roche - 2011-11-07
    Cockatoos have powder - which is what I think you're saying about dander. In the wild, they would naturally bathe with the rain but in your home, you have to bathe them. You can just spritz them down (soak them good) a few times a week with water. Some love the actual shower. If their feathers get dry, they itch and they will pick at them. A good soaking a few times a week should solve/help that. They also naturally preen their feathers which is their way of cleaning. Just soak her down - but gently. They have bird sprayers and bathes at the pet store but just water and a light sprayer (not the garden hose) will work.
  • Lois - 2011-12-27
    I have a suction cup shower perch for my Cockatoo and he likes his showers and certainly will tell you when he has had enough! My son moved in with a pit bull mix that agitated him and he started showing distress in his feathers so I bought the shower perch and it really helped. One day he said 'NO' and I wouldn't listen---he warned me and bit me bad. I pushed the idea of another bath and he just didn't want it! So do learn his or her body language! That bite HURT bad!
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Animal-World info on Greater Sulphur-crested Cockatoo
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Nabeel - 2010-08-29
I have a 6 yr old and 10 yr old Greater Sulfur Cockatoo. The past owners did not teach them how to step up. One is growing feathers that were completely plucked he has feathers so far missing on the shoulders of his wings and his legs. What can I do to speed up the process for them to return? And can you train these birds at this age to step up? Can they be taught to talk more?

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  • John - 2011-12-10
    Your cockatoo is stressed. When stressed they will pluck their own feathers. They can have a bacterial infection as well, although this is rare and unlikely. The rate of regrowth is as fast as nature intends, no quicker and no slower. Simply put, there is nothing you can do to speed up the process, they will grow back when they grow back. What you can do is to de-stress your bird.
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Animal-World info on Rose-breasted Cockatoo
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suraj - 2011-11-29
Hi I wanted to know about rose breasted cockatoo baby and the price too

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  • Charlie Roche - 2011-11-29
    Rose Breasted cockatoos in the United States purchased directly from a breeder usually run around $1300.
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