Cockatiels are awesome!
The cockatiel is one of the most popular pet birds you can find today. This friendly and relatively easy to train Australian parrot is an all time favorite not only because of its personality but also because of its availability and affordable price. Cockatiels are second in popularity only to the budgerigar.
This bird's personality makes them easy to bond with their human caretakers, and if you are not careful, they can get very spoiled by demanding your attention all the time. Being lovable and affectionate with their humans is what has made this bird the number one pet bird in The United States.
In the science world they are known as Nymphicus hollandicus and in many countries they are known as miniature cockatoo, weero, quarrion, calopsita, and carolina.
It's very important to understand that this type of bird can live 20 years or more. Males are better at singing and whistling while females not so much. If you are looking for a parrot that talks and can learn a wide variety of words, then the cockatiel is NOT the right bird for you. While once in a while they might learn a word or two, whistling is much easier for them.
Caring for your bird is very important, choose a cage at least twice the size of your cockatiel's wingspan, a minimum of 18 x 22 x 18 inches. If you will be keeping more than one in the cage, increase the cage size accordingly. Cage should include at least 2 perches of different heights, thickness and texture. These variations help keep your bird's feet healthy. Don't put a perch directly above the bird's food or water bowl; droppings are likely to land there. Layer the floor of the cage with corncob, aspen or recycled-paper bedding, or a cage liner. Spot clean the bedding frequently and completely change it at least once a month.
A well balance diet also plays a very important role on your bird's health. The birds' food bowl should be three-quarters full of feed birdseed and refresh it daily. Be sure to remove empty seed hulls from the food dish. Offer your cockatiel fruit such as apple, banana or melon once a week. Offer your cockatiel a honey stick or millet spray once a month as a special treat. Your bird needs access to fresh, clean water at all times and it's important to clean the water bowl every day.
Make sure you have the time to interact with your cockatiel as they are very social and they love company and play time. Toys designed to be destroyed by small beaks are perfect for these birds and include pieces of paper, cardboard of soft wood or non-toxic rawhide to chew up. It's important to keep your bird busy but by all means, do not overcrowd the cage with all kind of toys, it could be harmful for your bird as they can get injured form not being able to extent their wings.