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Cockatoo

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They do tricks. They talk. They snuggle! Cockatoos are one of the most loving and intelligent pet birds.

Cockatoos are filled with personality and make great pets because of their beauty and ability to mimic speech (copying what is being said). They are very intelligent and can be very good at getting out of their cage. They are sometimes even known as “escape artists.” Cockatoos can be easily trained. Teaching your bird basic commands, “step up” onto your hand and “step down” into their cage will make handling even easier. In the wild, speaking allows Cockatoos to recognize each other, warn of predators, show their mood, and keep the flock together.

Cockatoos require specific bird care in order to stay happy and healthy. You'll notice a white powder coming from their feathers. This feather dust is completely normal, but can make the cage and parts of the room white. These large- to medium-sized parrots want as much attention and playtime with your family as you can give; plan on two hours each day. Cockatoos can get loud at dawn, dusk, or when they want attention. They will get lonely if they are left alone too much, so pay as much attention to your pet Cockatoo as possible. It also helps Cockatoos if they receive attention from many people, so they don't bond too closely with only one person.

Cockatoos like space, so the cage you select should be large enough for your friend to comfortably fly between perches. The bigger the cage, the better. When they're not doing tricks for you, your Cockatoo will enjoy chew toys and other accessories. Your bird will really appreciate it if you rotate toys often.

In nature Cockatoos forage for seeds, fruit, flowers, and insects in pairs or small flocks. Your Cockatoo will appreciate nutritious pet bird food. To simulate natural behavior and nutritional requirements, it is a good idea to have many locations for food, water, and treats. Put multiple cups within the cage to encourage movement, as the bird explores the contents of each dish. Cage-top activity centers have food and treat cups. You can also hang treats from the activity bar atop the cage.

Eleven of the 21 Cockatoo species are native to Australia, while seven species originate on the islands of Indonesia, New Guinea, the Philippines, and the Solomon Islands. They live in woodlands, rain forests, shrub lands, and alpine forests. Their plumage is generally less colorful than that of the other parrots, being mainly white, gray, pink, or black with some color elsewhere. A Cockatoo usually weighs about 1 pound and is about 18 inches long. They live from 60 to 70 years and are perfect for owners aged 16

Fun Fact: Cockatoos all have a beautiful crest of feathers that they raise in defense or as part of mating displays.