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Welcome to the Too Room!

Post by Ronda on Thu Mar 13, 2008 10:18 am

Cockatoo's are known to be very lovey! My husband and I are awaiting our baby that we will be getting in April! We are getting a Goffin Cockatoo and his name is Casper. We decided we wanted a bird that would go to just about anyone and that wouldn't favor one person and not go to any others. After many readings we found the cockatoo to be one of those birds. I do want to say, that if you can't be home with your Too for the most part, these birds aren't meant for you. They love attention and if someone isn't there to give it, there will be prices to pay with loud screaming and things being torn up because they are great escape artists! Only get one of these birds if you can give it the love and attention it will need, because they are very very needy! Here is some information on the Cockatoo itself-

Basic Information

Cockatoos are large parrots that are native to Australia and the islands of the South Pacific. There are a few different species of Cockatoos that range in size from about 11 inches to 30 inches tall. They are very long lived, living 60-90 years in captivity. They have a bald patch on top of their heads covered with a crest that they can raise and lower. The crest's position is often an indication to the bird's mood. Cockatoos are powder-down birds, producing a dust from their feathers that can be quite heavy sometimes.

Intense Needs

Most Cockatoos are very intelligent, can be affectionate, and can have a lot of energy. They are generally quite vocal and loud. Due to their intelligence, Cockatoos are known for being able to escape from their cages, undo locks, and work through intricate puzzles. They love to chew and can destroy toys and other household objects very quickly. Their beaks are powerful and when aggressive, they can do serious physical damage to their caretakers. As with many species of parrots, Cockatoos often mate for life and bond very strongly to their caretakers as mates. This can be problematic because these birds expect a lot of physical and emotional attention from their mates, and these needs are often difficult to meet in captivity. Of all parrot species, I believe that Cockatoos require the most time and attention to meet their intense social and intellectual needs. I personally do not recommend a Cockatoo for most households. Problems often arise after some time has passed and the new caretaker no longer spends as much time cuddling and paying attention to their new bird. Cockatoos need lots of attention and when guardians fail to meet those social needs, the birds often develop serious behavioral problems such as excessive screaming, feather mutilation disorders and even body mutilation. I've only seen body mutilation problems in Cockatoos, not in any other parrot species.


Some Cocktoos can learn to speak, but in general Cockatoos are not known for their speaking abilities. If they do learn to talk, their speach may not be very clear and might be somewhat garbled. Of course, some Cockatoos have been known to speak very clearly but in general they are not known to be good talkers.

Sexual Maturity

Most Cockatoos can become somewhat unpredictable when they reach sexual maturity. Care needs to be taken to avoid biting attacks, such as not allowing the Cockatoo on your shoulder or near your face. A Cockatoo bite is said to be worse than any other parrot's as their lower beak has 2 points, resulting in a 3-point bite if delivered.


Cockatoos are very loud birds. They are not suited to apartments or homes where anyone is sensitive to noise. They are also not known to be obedient. They can be manipulative and have an unpredictable temper and disposition as they mature. They are often very destructive, as they tend to chew anything in sight.

In the Wild

Many species of Cockatoos are endangered or even nearly extinct in the wild due to trapping and other environmental factors. More information can be found at the Indonesian Parrot Project/Project Bird Watch website.

Cockatoo Species

Palm Cockatoos-

These birds are the largest and rarest of the Cockatoos. They are mostly black with a large beak and a spiney crest. They are native to New Guinea. They are not generally kept in captivity as "pets" in the U.S.

Moluccan Cockatoos (Salmon Crested Cockatoos)-
These birds are one of the largest species of Cockatoos, with light pink to salmon-colored feathers and a large orange crest. They are extremely intelligent and affectionate, though these traits often backfire on caretakers who are not able to meet their intense social and intellectual needs. They have a very loud morning and afternoon call, and in general they are one of the loudest Cockatoo species. These birds are aggressive chewers. They are native to the Phillippines and the Moluccan and Indonesia Islands.

Umbrella Cockatoos (Greater White Crested Cockatoos)
These birds are mostly white with lemon yellow feathers under their wings and tail. They are slightly smaller than Moluccan Cockatoos but have similar personality traits. They have a large white crest. They are voracious chewers and they are also quite social and affectionate. They are known to be very loud! They are native to Indonesia, and the Moluccan Islands of Batjan, Halmahera, Obi, Ternate and Tidor.

Greater Sulphur Crested Cockatoos
These birds are all white with yellow feathers on their crest and under their tail. Greater Sulphurs are about 20 inches high, quite social and active birds. They have been known to live over 100 years. Most of these birds will learn to talk.

Eleanora Cockatoos (Medium Sulphur Crested Cockatoos)
These birds are also very social and active birds. They are known to be not as "needy" as some of the other Cockatoo species.

Citron Cockatoos (Lesser Sulphur Crested Cockatoos)
These are smaller birds at about 14 inches in length. They have a bright orange crest with yellowish-orange cheek patches. They might be a little more reserved and shy compared to other Cockatoos, but they are still quite social.

Leadbeater's Cockatoos (Major Mitchell Cockatoos)
These birds are relatively small compared to other Cockatoos at about 15 inches in length. They are mostly pink with some white feathers. Their crest is red and yellow. They often become aggressive as they mature. These birds are also destructive chewers, and have a very loud call at times.They are native to inland Australia.

Rose Breasted Cockatoos (Galah Cockatoos)
These birds have rose-colored breast feathers and gray feathers on the wings and back. Their crest is white and pink and small compared to the crests of other Cockatoos. They are considered pests in their native Australia because large flocks often destroy fields of crops. Some people consider these birds to be more phobic-prone than other species of Cockatoos, with emotional traumas causing serious behavioral disturbances. They can become unpredictable when they reach sexual maturity and care must be taken to avoid attacks.

Bare-Eyed Cockatoos (Corellas)
These are smaller birds at about 17 inches in length. They have a small blue skin patch around their eyes. They are known to be noisy and comical birds. They have small white crests.

Goffins Cockatoos
These birds look similar to Bare-Eyed Cockatoos. They are relatively small at about 10 inches in length. They have white feathers with some yellow under the tail and wings. Goffins are known to be very engergetic and inquisitive birds and may be a bit more independent than some of the other birds of this species. Their lifespan is generally around 40 or 50 years. They are native to the Tanimbar Islands of Indonesia. They are very seriously endangered and possibly even extinct in the wild due to widespread trapping and destruction of their native habitat by the timber industry.



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