Acquired: Pet store
Posted Aug 13, 2014
To own a cockatiel, you should probably like the sound of a tweet. This is not the same high pitched, quick succession of 'chirp' you may get from a smaller bird, which to me sounds more like a noise they make for any reason at all, but one that sounds more like they are trying very hard to get your attention. They want to love you. Mine used to start singing the second I entered the house and would NOT stop until I said hi. She also had a habit of singing when I was trying to record my own voice or if I was talking to someone on the phone.
If you get a cockatiel, please please interact with him or her at the breeder/pet store before you take them home. Don't just pick up the bird you find the prettiest (it may be bitey or not want to hang out with you). I would stand next to the area they're being held in and see which one comes up to you. I did that, and Smokey climbed up my nerdy 4th grade turtle-neck and right onto my shoulder. So cute.
The cage is easy to clean, provided you get one that has a slide-out bottom. You'll also want to give he whole cage a wipe down every other week. On the subject of food, cockatiels I've had tend to like the dry food though their vet recommended they eat fresh fruit as well.
On the sad side, the two cockatiels I had died very early on in their lives. I do know that female cockatiels have a chance of laying too many eggs (unfertilized) and that can cause their death. Pet store cockatiels tend to be of lesser health as well. But owning one? If you pick the right bird for you, they will absolutely be your friend. Oh! And one other thing. They can be trained not to poop outside of the cage, especially if they like being around you. If they poop on you/furniture, put them back in the cage immediately. It will take a bit but they will learn.
If a bird is right for you, do give one a home!