Cockatiel frequently scratching himself...

Discussion in 'Caged Birds - Finches, Canaries, Cockatiels, Parro' started by Sunny Side Up, Dec 28, 2012.

  1. Sunny Side Up

    Sunny Side Up Count your many blessings...

    Mar 12, 2008
    Loxahatchee, Florida
    We've only had our cockatiel, Gimel, for a couple of months but he's gotten very friendly towards us in this short time. I'll often have him sit on my shoulder while I'm working at the computer (as he is right now!)

    It seems that he scratches himself frequently. He'll lift one foot and scratch at himself with the other. Or use his beak to scratch among his feathers. I've tried to part his feathers to look for mites the way I do with my chickens, but haven't seen anything.

    If he had mites or other such "company" would they be too small to see with the naked eye?

    Are there other things that could cause him to be so itchy, like dry skin?

    What's the mildest thing I could begin with to treat him for this? Or is this just a normal part of their grooming habits?

    Thank you for your input!

  2. rollkeeg877

    rollkeeg877 Chirping

    Dec 4, 2012
    london ontario
    he is moulting cause he is very young yet and they get there first big moult so he's scratching the feathers that need to come out or pin feathers
  3. TwoCrows

    TwoCrows Show me the way old friend Staff Member

    Mar 21, 2011
    New Mexico, USA
    My Coop
    Cockatiels are very dusty birds to begin with, and mine seem to scratch quite a bit as well. As the above poster has said, if he is molting, this will get his scratcher working over time too. :) I wouldn't worry about the scratching and mites, unless you start to see bald spots, very mutilated feathers or red patches of skin.
  4. silkiechicken

    silkiechicken Staff PhD Premium Member

    Mine scratches quite a bit. As stated above, molting will results in more scatching and they are very very dusty birds to begin with. I can't help but laugh when mine will pick it's nares with her middle toe. LOL

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