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Old 07-12-2013, 02:25 AM
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Lightbulb Cockatiel making strange sound?!

About 3 weeks ago I got a cockatiel from a breeder. Nimbus is about two and a half months old, and was hand fed. I know that there's no way (besides a blood test) to tell his sex at this age, so I just decided that he's a male.

Nimbus didn't make a lot of noise to begin with, but has gotten more and more noisy while I've had him. He spends almost all day on my shoulder or on his little playground (on top of his cage) that is right next to my desk where I do homework all day. He was originally fed an all seed diet, but now he's completely switched over to a pelleted diet. He drinks only filtered water and has all natural non-toxic toys in his cage which is 20" x 22" x 24" and made of powder coated steel. He's generally only in his cage at night and while I'm at the barn (or on the rare occasion that I cease to be a hermit and venture out into the real world). His wings are clipped. He's curious and cuddly, and an awesome little buddy.



(Giving you all of that information in case it's at all relevant!)

Recently he started making a strange noise that I can't find any information on. I say "recently," but I think he's made it a little all along, but my sister just noticed it and thought it was weird. I took two videos of him making the sound (below). He often makes it when I pet him or when he gets snuggly. Do any of you know what this is, or why he makes it? Should I be concerned? Thank you for your help!!




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Old 07-12-2013, 02:32 AM
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Re: Cockatiel making strange sound?!

That's a baby begging sound he's making! Is he eating pretty good on his own??? I'm going to say Nimbus is a girl from the Pearl Pied coloring. By 9 months of age if Nimbus still have the Pearl coloring, Nimbus is a girl.
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Old 07-12-2013, 02:48 AM
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Re: Cockatiel making strange sound?!

Thanks for your reply!!

He's only about 2 1/2 months old, and the breeder said his feathers wouldn't really turn into adult feathers until he was about 6 months, but I don't really know! And, hey, if he's female, I'll just say he identifies as a male and that everyone should respect that! xD

That aside, he has been eating pretty well. At first I tried to immediately switch him to pellets and he wasn't eating enough so I kept him on a seed diet a little longer, until he was eating his pellets even with seed available. His crop (is that the right term?!) seems to be full and he appears to be happy and healthy! He has food available all the time (I set up two little bows of food and water wherever we go around the house). I could be wrong, though!!

I know that before I bought him he was eating on his own all the time, but had been recently weaned from hand feeding. I know that pellets are much better for him, but should I keep feeding him seed? Does him making that sound mean that he's definitely hungry? Is there any way to tell if he's eating enough? I know a little bit about the crop (if that's the right word) and if I have the right information, it's flatish when he's full. Right now it's a little bit concave, but not really sunken in...

Thanks for your help!!!!

Bonus Picture!


Last edited by nimble; 07-12-2013 at 02:59 AM.
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Old 07-12-2013, 02:59 AM
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Re: Cockatiel making strange sound?!

They start going through adult molt around 6-9 months old. You can keep on feeding pellets just make sure he's not losing weight. When you feel their chest, you should feel meat around the breast bone on both sides, if you feel breast bone protruding and no meat around it, then that's when you should worry. At 2 and a half months old he is rather young still. It will pass!
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Old 07-12-2013, 03:06 AM
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Re: Cockatiel making strange sound?!

Quote: Originally Posted by MikeyTN View Post
They start going through adult molt around 6-9 months old. You can keep on feeding pellets just make sure he's not losing weight. When you feel their chest, you should feel meat around the breast bone on both sides, if you feel breast bone protruding and no meat around it, then that's when you should worry. At 2 and a half months old he is rather young still. It will pass!
Thank you so much!! I'll keep a close eye on him!



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Old 07-12-2013, 03:31 AM
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Re: Cockatiel making strange sound?!

Nimbus is a very pretty baby!!!!

Right now is the best time to try to introduce fruits and veggies, they may act scared towards it but if you would eat a piece in front of Nimbus and offer the same one he should try it.
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Old 07-12-2013, 08:06 AM
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Re: Cockatiel making strange sound?!

Thanks! I've fed him some veggies, but he hasn't eaten any fruit yet. He likes romaine lettuce, asparagus, and spinach. He'll nibble at broccoli, but doesn't like it very much. I tried to feed him some mango, but he, like you said, acted a little scared of it. He also didn't touch any of the apple or banana I offered him. When I offered him some watermelon, he was only interested in the seeds, so I had to take it away.

I'll try eating some and then offering him some like you said. Are there any fruits or veggies that could be dangerous to him? I've viewed some fairly comprehensive lists, but I just want to make sure there's not something I don't know about.

I know that avocado, chocolate, iceburg lettuce, onions, and parsley(?) are bad (potentially deadly) for birds, but that can't be all! (:

Thanks for your help!
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Old 07-12-2013, 08:36 AM
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Re: Cockatiel making strange sound?!

I call it a sucky squawk....

she is beautiful, you are very lucky to have such a nice bird!
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Old 07-12-2013, 12:14 PM
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Re: Cockatiel making strange sound?!

Just keep working with the pellets. But I wouldn't mix any seed with it. It's good that he is eating veggies. You can try green apples and also banana. Feed veggies, fruit, and any other food in a separate bowl from the pellets. His pellet bowl should only designated for pellets. Mikey is right about checking the meat on each side of his keel bone.
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Old 07-12-2013, 12:30 PM
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Re: Cockatiel making strange sound?!

Well, I personally do not think that pellets are the healthiest option for tiels (or any other parrot for that matter) so I feed them gloop, raw produce and a low protein seed mix. I have found that most tiels are not good fruit eaters but they do love their greens (so a large variety is in order but not too much spinach or chard, they are high in oxalic acid which inhibits calcium absorption - dandelion, watercress, kale are much better options). Because of the gloop, mine eat veggies everyday (corn, peas, carrots, sweet potatoes, green beans and mote plus whatever I add to the basic recipe to make the flavor of the day).

You also want to stop caressing her back (I also think he is a she) the way you were doing on the video. It's a no-no with birds as it's exclusively a sexual caress -birds never preen each other's backs and they only touch there to have sex.
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