Back to list


Nymphicus hollandicus

Photo: Cockatiel
Weights and measures
Length 33 cm
Biological data
Lifespan 20 r
State of endangerment
Non Endangered
Animal description
The Cockatiel (Nymphicus hollandicus) is a captivating and popular pet bird known for its distinctive appearance and charming personality. Originating from Australia, this small parrot is a member of the cockatoo family, which is evident in its crest and the shape of its beak. Despite its smaller size compared to other cockatoos, the cockatiel exhibits many of the same endearing qualities that make cockatoos beloved pets.

One of the most striking features of the cockatiel is its dramatic crest, which can be raised or lowered to express the bird's mood. When excited or curious, the crest stands tall and erect. However, when scared or defensive, the crest flattens against the head. The cockatiel's face is adorned with a distinctive cheek patch, which is often bright orange, providing a stark contrast against its predominantly grey or yellow plumage. Males typically have more vivid facial markings and brighter overall coloration than females, although variations exist depending on the specific color mutation.

Cockatiels are relatively small birds, with an average length of about 12 to 13 inches (30 to 33 cm) from head to tail, and they weigh approximately 3 to 4 ounces (85 to 113 grams). Their bodies are slender and streamlined, with long, pointed tails that contribute to their elegant appearance. Their wings are broad and powerful, allowing for skilled and agile flight.

In terms of personality, cockatiels are known for their sociable and affectionate nature. They thrive on interaction with their human companions and can form strong bonds with their owners. These birds are intelligent and can learn to mimic sounds and, in some cases, speech, although their repertoire is generally not as extensive as that of some other parrot species. Cockatiels are also known for their whistling abilities, with males being particularly adept at learning tunes and often engaging in vocal displays to attract attention or express happiness.

Cockatiels require a diet that consists of a variety of seeds, pellets, fruits, and vegetables to ensure they receive all the necessary nutrients for a healthy life. They also need regular opportunities for exercise and mental stimulation to keep them fit and prevent boredom. This can include flying in a safe, enclosed area, playing with toys, and interacting with their human family members.

When it comes to their natural habitat, cockatiels are found in the wild across much of Australia, particularly in regions where water sources are readily available. They are highly adaptable birds, inhabiting a range of environments from the bush to arid or semi-arid areas. In the wild, cockatiels live in flocks and exhibit complex social behaviors, including mutual preening and vocal communication.

As pets, cockatiels can live for 15 to 20 years or more with proper care, making them a long-term commitment for any bird owner. Their friendly demeanor, manageable size, and relative ease of care contribute to their popularity as companion animals. For those willing to invest the time and effort into understanding and meeting their needs, cockatiels make delightful and rewarding pets, offering companionship, entertainment, and the opportunity to form a deep and lasting bond.
Map of occurrence
Photo: Cockatiel - occurrence
New photos of animals