Ducorps Cockatoo Chewing on Leg Feathers?


New member
Sep 29, 2015
Willow, a Ducorp's Cockatoo (age 4)
Hello everyone, I am new to the forum and have questions regarding the recent behavior of my D2, Willow. Lately he has been chewing on his leg feathers specifically on his right leg.

I have noticed him doing it lately for the past couple of days. No blood, no scaly, cracked, flaky skin. He just sits and picks at his leg feathers for minutes on end without stopping. I have been trying to ignore it but its really starting to worry me. I love my D2 and try to provide as well of a home as I possibly can for him, but honestly I believe some of this is my fault. Lately I haven't been home as much and I think its stressing him out. I am now trying to set aside an hour each day to play with him and am purchasing new toys, introducing foraging activities, etc.

My D2 just turned a year old on the 15th of September. (2015). Could this be hormonal? Stress? Irritation/Pain? I am going to call my vet tomorrow to see where we can go from here. I'm very upset about this. :(


Well-known member
Oct 27, 2013
U2-Poppy(Poppy lives with her new mommy, Misty now) CAG-Jack, YNA, Bingo, Budgie-Piper, Cockatiel-Sweet Pea Quakers-Harry, Sammy, Wilson ***Zeke (quaker) Twinkle (budgie) forever in our hearts
Hello and a warm welcome to the forums! We'd love to see photos of Willow! :)

At the age of one, your Too is still too young for the onset of puberty. Smaller Too species reach puberty between 3 to five years, larger species from 7 to 10.

Providing new toys and foraging opportunities and spending more quality time with him are very good ideas. What kind of perches does he have? Does he have a favorite perch that he spends a lot of time on? I ask because most birds have a favorite place to perch and standing on the same perch for hours on end can cause stress to the feet and legs, replacing and rotating a variety of perches with different widths and textures can alleviate the stress, have you checked the bottom of his feet, the first sign of a pressure sore is a white spot on the bottom of the foot. Climbing is good exercise and good for the feet, ladders and cargo nets are popular with Toos.

Another possibility is the regrowth of new feathers, the protective covering on cockatoo feathers can be thick, tough, itchy and uncomfortable until the feather matures. Sometimes discomfort due to brand new feathers can cause a Too to pick at that area until the sheath releases and falls off. Extra baths in plain water will help soften the coverings so they come off a bit quicker.

I'm not sure a vet visit is necessary just yet, but I would make a few changes for Willow and keep a close eye on the new behavior. If he continues to chew after a few more days then I would suggest a thorough exam to rule out possible medical issues.

I wish you and Willow the best. Please keep us updated.


Staff member
Super Moderator
Dec 18, 2013
Maya (Female Solomon Island eclectus parrot), Jolly (Male Solomon Island eclectus parrot), Bixby (Male, red-sided eclectus. RIP), Suzie (Male cockatiel. RIP)
I would just like to cosign on Allee's post. Excellent advice.


Supporting Member
Aug 21, 2010
San Diego, California USA, Earth, Milky Way Galaxy
Goffins: Gabby, Abby, Squeaky, Peanut, Popcorn / Citron: Alice / Eclectus: Angel /Timneh Grey: ET / Blue Fronted Amazon: Gonzo /

RIP Gandalf and Big Bird, you are missed.
Me too!

Unfamiliar with the Ducorps, so I had to Google. Beautiful birds!!

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