Ohio, United States
Posted Dec 14, 2008
Cockatiels make good starter birds for families with children and for someone who wants a bird on their shoulder all day long. You must start out with a tame bird from a breeder or a reputable pet shop. It should be tame for you when you get it. Only males talk. They are not great talkers, but they will pick up lots of whistles. Females are quieter, but are quite lovable.
The only problem with a cockatiel is that they are so wonderful that when someone wants to "upgrade" (and hopefully still keep their original cockatiel) to buy a larger bird, people seem to PRESUME other parrot species will be as social and tame and non-nippy as a cockatiel. WRONG.... Parrots can come with quirks that cockatiels do not have. Please do your bird research before choosing your next pet bird, just a word of advice from a multi-bird owner.
PS: My Whitey is a heavy pied (mostly yellow) cockatiel. He was hatched in my house in l985, talks, is tame, and I still have him as of today 12/15/08. Owning a bird can be a commitment. If you do not plan on keeping your pet bird thru his/her whole life, do not consider getting one in the first place. Or stick to a budgie which will live only 5-10 years.