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New to Cockatiels

Discussion in 'Caged Birds - Finches, Canaries, Cockatiels, Parro' started by Crickett, Nov 21, 2013.

  1. Crickett

    Crickett Songster

    Apr 9, 2009
    Heart of Dixie
    I just recently got two cockatiels. They are both male, and have been cage mates for about 20 years. Their previous owner passed away, and her daughter didn't want them. I don't know much about this type of bird, so any advice would be appreciated. Their names are Martin and Lewis. Lewis has been picking his feathers, and Martin helps him. Now the back of his head /neck is starting to look bald, and his wings and chest are looking rough too. What should I do about this?

  2. sourland

    sourland Broody Magician Premium Member

    May 3, 2009
    New Jersey
    If you don't get any replies, try a PM to theoldchick. She has a lot of experience with cage birds. Good luck.
  3. Chickens 235

    Chickens 235 In the Brooder

    Jun 26, 2012
    Cockatiels are very social birds. If they pick their feathers out, it means they're stressed. If you don't have an hour at a minimum to interact with each bird, this will continue to happen. Also, if you have toys in the cage, try switching and moving toys every week to spice up their environment and it can HELP.

    What do you feed Martin and Lewis? An all seed diet can make them sick because seeds are mostly fat. Some foods are fatal to cockatiels such as EGGPLANT and AVOCADO. Cockatiels hide when they get sick, so look for symptoms such as-

    *clogged nostrils
    *odd colored droppings
    *staying at the bottom of their cage

    As for your house, drafts are FATAL to cockatiels. When they are not prepared for cold, an unsuspecting draft can swoop in and chill your birds.

    I hope this helps!
  4. Dreyadin

    Dreyadin In the Brooder

    Oct 28, 2013
    Chickens 235 hit it on the head... sounds like stress. We also had a pair of cockatiels for over 20 years which we gave to the neighbor's daughter (they loooooove her- she was our bird sitter.)

    With the owner passing away.. try keeping a set routine so they start to adjust to the new environment. They are clever little birds that can be a lot of fun... but their feather plucking sounds like anxiety. Some can be kinda clingy- like ours were. In moderation.. you can try different treats hidden in the cage or in their toys. Millet spray was always a big hit.. but chickweed they would devour until their beaks were green. Don't make it easy.. if they have to work for it it will keep them occupied longer.

    Have their cage in an area that has less traffic. New place after 2 decades of a set environment is a lot to handle. If the only location has higher traffic.. use a cloth to cover part of the cage so they feel a bit more protected.

    Btw... not sure if you know this about them.. but they can learn words and mimic whistles. Ours said birdie-birdie, sweetheart.. and copied my Mom's whistle followed by yelling "cookie!" (that's how my Mom calls the dogs in.) They also did part of the Austin Powers theme song that my sister would always whistle. If 1 learns it.. the other will pick it up super fast.

    Another place to check (in case you don't have a vet that handles birds by you..).. is try contacting a parrot rescue for additional tips to help them.

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