Acquired: Breeder (non-professional, hobby breeder)
Posted Apr 29, 2014
Kitty is a Cockatiel. He is not my first Cockatiel. He actually was a replacement for Kitty I, that unfortunately was attacked by a cat on the back deck in his cage. Cockatiels are great birds. They can be taught to speak with patience and time. You can also teach them to do basic tricks again with time and patience.
Birds are not as fragile as people think. They are actually quite hardy and can live up to 25 years in captivity. It is important that the see a avian vet once a year for a regular check up. A good diet of the right seed mix will insure their health.
Cockatiels enjoy an occasional treat of Millet spray and fresh fruits. They are very easy to please and very willing to please you back. A juvenile bird is always the best bet because you have a better opportunity to train them as you see fit.
Kitty can talk. While Cockatiels have the physical ability to speak it does take some work to get them to mimic words. If you cover the cage on three sides to minimize all distractions and sit in front of the cage and say the same word over and over eventually they will say it back to you. Patience is key! The younger the bird the better the training.
I have had Kitty since she was a tiny baby and began training her as soon as she settled in. The proper housing is important for your Cockatiel. You need a cage that they can grow into. In other words don't buy a smaller cage with the plan of buying a larger cage as they grow you are better off buying the larger cage to begin with. Birds do not like change. They can go into shock so you do not want to disrupt their routine or living quarters too much.
Wing clipping is necessary. A lot of people feel that it is not right to clip your birds wings but while you are training them it is absolutely necessary. Clipping their wings also keeps them safe.
Cockatiels and other caged birds come from wild birds but they have been bred to be domestic if they were to get out they likely would not survive so keeping their wings clipped is really a safety measure for them.
Cockatiels need entertainment! They need toys and other items in their cage that will keep them entertained. Birds can become depressed and lose their feathers much like humans that start losing their hair when they are under too much stress.
If you are new to bird ownership a Cockatiel is a great choice. They are relatively easy to care for and are relatively hardy. They make great companions and love to be loved!