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Old 09-24-2013, 02:02 PM
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Differences in Cockatoos

I went to a picnic over the weekend sponsored by a companion bird club and the majority of cockatoos attending were the Goffen, Moluccan, and Umbrella. Aren't Triton, Greater and Lesser Sulpher Crested popular? If not, please educate me as I really like them and kicking around the idea of getting one instead of another amazon.

I check CL everyday to see what type of birds are available. Window shopping. lol. Anyway, it's rare to see any sulpher crested 'toos. Are their personalities nothing in comparison to the Umbrella's?
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Old 09-24-2013, 02:16 PM
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Re: Differences in Cockatoos

My experience with SC2's is they are very sweet, but they can also be among the worst tantrum throwers. This is a relative concept, because with toos it's all about how you raise them...

The thing about most Toos is people tend to want the big ones (M2's U2's), or the really small ones (G2's). That's where the demand is, so that's what the breeders tend to focus on. (Personally, most folks cannot meet the needs of most M2's which is why so many of these birds end up plucked down to their very last head feather. I love them, but I am sorry they were ever introduced to the pet trade. I've seen too many horror story M2's.)

The only toos I ever brought home were a Rose Breasted, and a pathetic looking plucked bald little Goffin's who jumped into my arms, and refused to leave.

I was the first person who had ever succeeded in handling that bird, and they quite literally begged me to take him on as a foster. So we did. I ended up being the "meanie" who put the medicine on his open sores, so he ended up being my daughter's bird. (She would run to her as soon as I finished putting the medicine on her, and tell Sarah all about it....)

We got the bird to stop plucking, but it came at a terrible, terrible cost.

This bird still OCD'ed on preening, just did it with preening toys and preening rope. She ended up ingesting so much of it, she died of an intestinal blockage...

That one was a neurotic tortured soul of a bird.

Obviously, I am the last person to ask advice from about plucking disorders. I thought I was helping at the time...

I've rehabbed a few toos, but those were the only two I ever really lived with. RB2's are friggin' WONDERFUL birds!

Last edited by Birdman666; 09-24-2013 at 02:20 PM.
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Old 09-24-2013, 03:49 PM
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Re: Differences in Cockatoos

I think the sulphur crested, citron and triton 'toos were more popular 10 years ago... but since then their popularity has decreased. Then again, I've also noticed that with some conure species and subspecies and I think with some mini macaws.

Species that were more commonly known 10 years ago are becoming unheard of now. A lot of people are also hybridizing species and subspecies because they can't tell the difference between them.


What we need are breeders who strive for purity. If we don't, well, hybrids may very well be the future of aviculture.
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Old 09-24-2013, 04:13 PM
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Re: Differences in Cockatoos

I must admit that the U2's at the picnic were real characters and thought maybe that would explain their popularity.

I did a little research on the Triton, Great and Lesser 'toos and the research said they are notorious screamers. Are they all that way? I guess I will have to do some research on personalities and sizes. I love the contrasting yellow feathering against all the white.
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Old 09-24-2013, 04:21 PM
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Re: Differences in Cockatoos

Personally, I love the little citrons! But if I were to buy a young cockatoo, I'd probably go after a galah! I'd be too afraid I'd turn any other cockatoo into a horrible screamer that mutilates and bites! Unless I adopted an already well adjusted cockatoo, that might be a different story!

From my own research, the sulphur crested toos and similar ones are typically more nippy, stand off-ish and independent birds. They can be difficult birds to handle. Although U2's and M2's are known for being very gentle and cuddly birds, they are also known for being very destructive, loud, if hormonal hard to handle, nasty bites, etc. The little cockatoos aren't nearly as neurotic as their larger cousins, but that doesn't mean that they can't be!


I think it's best to keep researching and see if you can interact with any birds in person! Sorry though that I have no hands on experience caring for a 'too. I've handled them, just never owned one!
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Old 09-24-2013, 04:31 PM
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Re: Differences in Cockatoos

That's two votes for RB2'S from non-too owners...

Now we need the super experienced too owners to chime in.
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Old 09-24-2013, 04:49 PM
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Re: Differences in Cockatoos

I don't regard myself as super-experienced, but I've owned a SC and Galahs. The SC was *never* happy! The entire time we had him, he just moped in his cage, refused to play with toys and eventually began to self-mutilate. I have to say, I've never seen a completely happy caged cockatoo. They're just too big and too athletic to keep inside a house. Can you imagine a bird the size of an SC2 flying around in your house? Even in an aviary, they don't really fly properly - until you've seen a big flock wheeling across the entire sky, dipping and rising again in unison, you can't really understand what it is they're missing. SC2s fly for the joy of it. Galahs don't. They fly when they need to, otherwise they just forage or play.
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Old 09-24-2013, 10:09 PM
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Re: Differences in Cockatoos

Will I can give my experience with my husband and I's U2 that was given to us from a lady 2 hours away. I have many birds but did not have a big bird. My husband and I played with the idea of getting an Umbrella Cockatoo eventually but definitely wanted a baby from a very experienced breeder. As I was on a Facebook group that I belong to there was a lady with what she said was a male U2, never had he or she DNA'd, we are currently waiting on those results. For a month her and I chatted back and forth. Her husband who is young has a ton of health issues and sadly was in the hospital a lot with surgeries etc. So of course she wanted to rehome Sunshine. I finally convinced my husband and after her deciding to do trade for a Tablet we didn't use and an Ipod I drove the two hours to get him. He/She is in great health and feathering. Got home and the next day the screaming started. She insisted that Sunshine isn't a screamer but I doubt that. He/She has been with us since June. We believe the problem is that Sunshine was spoiled to the point of not being shown that it's ok to play in and on your cage and playstand. They are called velcro birds. Very affectionate and love to be with their family. But independence is also important. We are the 3rd owner and Sunshine is around 10. Unfortunately we don't have any other history. But I must say that besides the screaming, which we surprisingly can handle, Sunshine is our baby. Makes us laugh and is so loving. Goes places with us and is a ham. Loves to show off. Research is very important and I would suggest to research each type of Cockatoo. No two birds are the same. But being able to find out which is more suitable for your life is important. Everyone has to be happy. Toos are probably if not the most rehomed birds. They don't like change to much. I hope I was able to give some help with my experience.
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Old 09-25-2013, 12:44 PM
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Re: Differences in Cockatoos

Galahs really are wonderful birds! Just as big a character as the white toos, a delicate little beak that is unlikely to inflict the damage that a larger too is capable of, and generally they seem a lot gentler and more forgiving than their bigger relatives.

That said, the local pet shop has a LSC that is often out on a play stand and seems a very sweet natured and friendly bird which they obviously trust to be out and about around customers. I also know there are galahs out there that are little demons, so I guess a lot depends on the individual bird.
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Old 09-25-2013, 12:54 PM
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Re: Differences in Cockatoos

Quote: Originally Posted by Merlee View Post
I must admit that the U2's at the picnic were real characters and thought maybe that would explain their popularity.

I did a little research on the Triton, Great and Lesser 'toos and the research said they are notorious screamers. Are they all that way? I guess I will have to do some research on personalities and sizes. I love the contrasting yellow feathering against all the white.
The only toos that are NOT notorious screamers, to my knowledge, are the RB2s, the Black Palms (good luck finding one of those!), Goffins, and MM2's.

What you have to understand though, is that most too screaming disorders come from how these birds are raised. More than any other captive species, toos have to be taught how to self entertain, and if you hold one too long, well... you are most likely, creating a monster! (i.e. Don't set me down - EVER!!!)

And until the bird turns 5 years old, you really don't know what you've got with a U2. That's when you find out if you've done a good job of raising them, or have created a monster... you see a sudden behavioral shift. (And sometimes your ears bleed... )

That's the trick with toos. They have to self entertain, and they have to have things to play with... Bored toos that cannot self entertain quickly become Scream N Plucks.

Last edited by Birdman666; 09-25-2013 at 12:56 PM.
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