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Old 10-08-2019, 08:25 PM
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Adding a new female Umbrella Too to my home with a Male

I am new to this forum and if this topic has been already discussed please forgive me. I rehomed a male umbrella cockatoo “Charlie” just over one year ago. He is now approximately 16 years old. He has adjusted to our busy home very well and has the house to roam 10-12 hours a day. We have several dogs, cats, and a couple guinea pigs. He wants to play with our Great Danes but has not figured out how to without getting jumpy and nippy with them. I think he is trying to be loving but the dogs disagree! Lol

We have enjoyed and learned so much from him that we thought maybe we should get another Too to enjoying for him. Looking at our statewide classified ad site we found that there are 2 different ads with female Umbrellas are in need of rehoming...

My question is do we try to find another male, look into one of the females or maybe a different species all together?
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Old 10-08-2019, 08:28 PM
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Re: Adding a new female Umbrella Too to my home with a Male

Oh man... My heart jumped a bit over this..(okay, it always does when I see posts about adopting cockatoos lol)
That is a HUGE question and I (personally) would not get him a mate...period. Others will likely have different opinions.

There is a lot at risk....They do love a good flock, but there are so many unknowns and the massive potential for hormonal/behavioral interference...Just my opinion. Egg binding can be deadly and aggression around a mate can get "extreme". If you have a good thing going on right now, I would not mess with it. Cockatoos are notoriously complicated birds and there is no reason to rock the boat by adding a wild-card to the mix.

Last edited by noodles123; 10-09-2019 at 03:04 AM.
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Old 10-09-2019, 08:41 AM
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Re: Adding a new female Umbrella Too to my home with a Male

I wouldn't get him a mate -- just asking for trouble especially if you aren't interesting in breeding. Cockatoos are known to be extremely neurotic parrots when it comes to bonding, pairing and breeding and can sometimes end up killing their mates from the whole frustration and aggression breeding and hormones brings on.

Stick with your guy, let him be by himself no need to get him a friend if you have as busy a household as you say, he will never be alone.
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Old 10-09-2019, 10:36 AM
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Re: Adding a new female Umbrella Too to my home with a Male

Wellcome, I hope you enjoy the broad topics and parrot info sharing here.
In regards to parrot dog interaction, don't do it, don't encourage it, and stop it when ever it happens. We have had so many tragic deaths reported here!!!!!
I have four dogs, I never allow interaction, despite my parrots thinking it would be fun to harass dogs. My dogs are trained to give five feet of space to the parrots, and I've discouraged the dogs from even looking or focussing on the parrots. I've done this with my two prior dogs that are now passed and my four current, do that's six. It can be done. But I still don't completely trust the dogs. When the parrots want to mess with a dog I tell them
No and put them up, the parrots learned pretty quickly messing with dogs isn't worth being shunned.
Sorry to go on, but I've cried to many times over other people's parrot deaths.

As for a second cockatoo. The second bird may be completely different experience than you've had with your first. I rescued a second quaker who at first was a real screamer. My first Quaker decided that was fun to mimic, and now he lives to scream!!! And his screaming started her screaming.... So I went from a reasonably quiet household to a very loud house......that risk is there for you as well....two parrots are going be louder as they feed off eachother, try and out shout scream eachother.
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Last edited by Laurasea; 10-09-2019 at 10:46 AM.
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Old 10-09-2019, 11:57 AM
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Re: Adding a new female Umbrella Too to my home with a Male

'Toos are SO demanding and require so much attention that two will only double the demands, plus if you get a female, you'll have all kinds of hormone issues going on, both hers and his. I'd stick with just one, for everyone's sake.
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Old 10-09-2019, 12:05 PM
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Re: Adding a new female Umbrella Too to my home with a Male

Dogs! I have had to bury 3 parrots! One of my own! The other two were equally sad! Mine was killed right in front of me, you cannot move fast enough! It also cost me my marriage!
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Old 10-09-2019, 01:17 PM
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Re: Adding a new female Umbrella Too to my home with a Male

Welcome! Every situation is unique, so thanks for posting a personal narrative.

Dogs: As others have posted, they can be a deadly combination with parrots. That said, I've had Great Danes for decades and they are among the least aggressive species towards birds. Gentle giants indeed! Which means the probability of disaster is reduced but not eliminated. Please take every possible precaution and never turn your back and assume an interaction will be safe.

I have a home filled with cockatoos and realize they can establish deep friendships. You never know until they are introduced, thus acquiring a second bird is not for the faint of heart. You may be confronted with two hostile birds and the need to separate for life, enjoying them as individuals. Unless you intend to breed, a large cage without nestbox or other pathway to egg laying is crucial.
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Old 10-09-2019, 05:45 PM
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Re: Adding a new female Umbrella Too to my home with a Male

Thank You all for your in put. We will hold off on the female for sure. Charlie is my bird but loves everyone in the house. My wife would like to have one of her own, do you all think a bird of different species would work with a Too? We would love to have a Macaw or Africa Grey. But, certainly don’t want to ruin a good thing
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Old 10-09-2019, 09:30 PM
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Re: Adding a new female Umbrella Too to my home with a Male

Quote: Originally Posted by TnTHold View Post
Thank You all for your in put. We will hold off on the female for sure. Charlie is my bird but loves everyone in the house. My wife would like to have one of her own, do you all think a bird of different species would work with a Too? We would love to have a Macaw or Africa Grey. But, certainly don’t want to ruin a good thing
This one definitely a hard topic to answer. Usually I usually say no to a mate for various reasons. One main reason being is unless you are very experience with breeding behavior and what to look for, you can still get the female cockatoo, but keep them separate when unsupervised and in separate cages. Reason being is one could get very aggressive and dominant towards the other and even if they are fully bonded to each other and mate, they can seriously injury and even kill each other. Yes seen it happen when I use to work for and train breeders. They could be fine for 2 years, or more even and then next minute is all it takes. In the wild they have space to get away from each other, in captivity they don't. Plus your male U2 could have bonded to you, or your wife as a mate and may not know how to handle a female U2, or even attack the female U2 when you come around, as he consider you, or your wife as his mate. Breeders match the bird to each other and watch for aggression and try various methods to curb the aggression and worst case will break the bond and one of the reason breeders look for a proven breeding pairs.

Then you have the hormonal nesting Behavior issues. It take a lot of experience to deal with a mated couple and tons of training. Now thankfully I can handle and play with and deal with my mated pair of U2 during nesting season, but it took me a while to train them and to curb the behavior. Most can't handle a mated pair during nesting season as one could attack you, even when they didn't before and even when fully bonded to you.

If your wife and family want another U2 and since you have one already and know pretty much what you are getting yourself into and don't mind and have the time as you stated earlier. Then it doesn't hurt to visit the bird a few times and see if she going to fit into your family. Take into consideration there is no guarantee they will get along and sure be kept separate when unsupervised and in separate cages. Plus you have to go through quarantine period and introduce them slowly while giving your male U2 the same and for a while first attention, since he was first in your house, so he won't get jealous of the new bird. If you take it slow and do it right it can work. Don't get the other bird for the reason you want your other bird to have company. Get her due to you want the bird yourself and don't mind keeping them separate. Yes they still can bond and play with each other, just have to take it slow and let the other bird get to know each other safely with supervision and could work out great.

As far as a different species of bird, same rules apply. Having a Macaw with a cockatoo is ok so long you have a good air purifier like a IQ Air, to help with the dust the Cockatoo create as macaws are sensitive to that.

As far as dealing with a mated couple and nesting hormonal behavior, if they do decide to mate, is for a whole another topic on its own.

Last edited by ParrotGenie; 10-09-2019 at 10:07 PM. Reason: p
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Old 10-09-2019, 10:20 PM
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Re: Adding a new female Umbrella Too to my home with a Male

My experience with toos is they don't generally mix with non-too species. Three of my Goffins live in a room with a TAG and none are caged. They occasionally fly to a common cage top or stand but keep a respectful distance. Nor do they get close to my BFA when he visits.

That said, different species of toos can live harmoniously. At one time I had the three Goffins living with a M2 and Citron. Plenty of mutual grooming occurred. One of my Goffins is currently living with a Citron - no nest box of course!
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