Posted May 23, 2015
I adopted a cockatiel from someone who no longer had time for him. He lived with us for about 6 years until he finally passed of natural causes. After that my hubby bought one as a valentine's day gift, thus the name Valentino. We thought it was a male, it was a female. We realized that when she started laying eggs! When we got her they clipped her wings so she could be let out of the cage. It was not hard to train her to fly around the house, but you must be careful. Have a towel ready so you can throw it over them and catch them if needed. It will help so you don't get bit and so the bird doesn't hurt itself trying to get away from you until it's used to being held. Once they are trained they really do not need their wings clipped again as long as you are careful with keeping windows and doors closed. Cockatiels are very social and like one of the family. You shouldn't buy a single bird if you are going to keep it in a cage all day and never interact. They love people so keep them in the most active room in your house. They also love baths so I would spray mine with a water bottle once a week or so. They are easy to feed, usually a high grade seed with fruit mixed in works. They also love apples and mine loved pretzels (though i didn't let her have a lot of salt). Animal crackers are also a great treat. They need toys and things they can chew. Also make sure the cage has horizontal bars and not verticle so they can move around easily. And do not use those sandpaper covered perches. It hurts their feet and really doesn't keep their talons down. You will have to clip them by hand, again you can swaddle them in a towel leaving their feet out and clip them that way. Sometimes the females can become egg bound even when they are alone. You must have a clean area at the bottom of the cage for them (as they usually will be at the bottom of the cage till they pass the egg) Keep a warm light on them and keep them fed and hydrated. Usually they will pass the egg without issue and then after sitting on it a few days realize it's not fertilized and reject it. Cockatiels are awesome pets and are great with kids that are gentle. Vet visits are only necessary when there's an issue. It's a tramatic experience taking them to the vet because they do not do well in the cage for car rides, so usually if you just call the vet they will give you ideas on how to treat them. They are very easy to take care of and can live for up to 15 years if taken care of.