Which is a better option for a first time parrot owner?

saxguy64

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I've never had a green cheek, but they're sweet funny big birds in small bodies. Tiels, I've had, and I adore them. Whichever you choose, please make sure they're fully weaned (by their choice, not just forced into solid food) before bringing them home.
 

Inger

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Have you had an opportunity to meet them? If so, did one of them seem to really like you? Birds choose us sometimes and if this happens, that's the bird you want. If it doesn't, you can still build a wonderful, strong, loving bond.

Have you researched both birds thoroughly? Life span, noise potential, personality (every bird is different, but there are some species traits that may interest you) etc. can make a difference in your decision.

Finally, are you more drawn to one species over the other? If so, pick that one.

Keep us posted we love pictures!
 

hiriki

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Honestly both are on the small/medium side, a green cheek has a bit more of a painful bite than the average cockatiel (though I've met a tiel with a knife for a beak so even that depends somewhat on the individual). GCCs are kind of famous for unpleasant puberty and you're looking at a baby so there is that.

But as long as you're not going out and adopting a macaw with zero bird experience, I think in a lot of ways the starter bird concept is a myth. Which one do YOU want more? Which one has been friendlier with you? Have you watched videos of people who have both species and gotten a feel for typical personalities? Does one appeal more?

If you literally have zero preference, I think maybe the cockatiel, based on the GCC reputation for biting. It's nice to have a first bird who isn't out for blood. But a lot of that is up to the individual and the work you do to socialize them anyway.
 
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N0va

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@hiriki honestly I don’t really have a huge preference I have reasons for liking both, I’ve done research on both, I’ve had birds before, I’m new to proper enriched bird care and I’ve done tons of research but Ive kept a bird alive before no problem. I love the way most cockatiels just sit with you and preen and ask for scritches and bop their head on things while I also love the way conures play and dance and snuggle. Honestly I’m thinking of maybe getting the cockatiel just because it will be less hassle having a confirmed male
 
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N0va

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@Inger I haven’t had the chance to meet either bird but I’ll likely meet the conure today. I’ve researched both a lot, care and how they behave and while I find cockatiels very cool and approachable, but if I’m being honest with myself I can’t get over how interesting, and full of personality conures are but the biggest factor that draws me to them is they like being pet but that’s what scares me from getting one because maybe my bird will never be like that or maybe he will at first and then turn into a biting nightmare, I guess that can happen with any bird tho, so I guess id want whichever is generally easier to train?
 
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N0va

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@hiriki @Inger ok I’ll be honest with myself and everyone I really want the gcc, I’m scared I’ll go visit him today and fall in love with him and bring him home today lol but I’m also just a little scared of possibly being disappointed when owning a conure doesn’t match the videos (even the ones that make them sound bad make them look like sweethearts) but at the same time I feel the cockatiel will be more… predictable I guess?
 

hiriki

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(Birdie - Jenday Conure)
(Kiwi - Green Cheek Conure)
(Elby - Lovebird)
(Gorou & Liberty - Ringneck Doves)
I think you should go for the bird that you truly want--in this case, the conure. GCCs like I said have notoriously awful puberty, so if you get a baby you do need to know and understand that at 1-2 years old they will go through puberty... it might be a nothing burger, you might barely notice. Or, your GCC will suddenly bite you to draw blood at every given opportunity and arbitrarily decide they like your parent/significant other/roommate more than they like you. You're their "parent" and once they hit puberty, some birds don't want a "parent" anymore so they very suddenly switch their affection to a different person.

Every bird has puberty but conures in particular seem to have pretty extreme puberty more often. Most of my birds are adults, and while I did get my GCC as a baby he's not yet 1 yr old, so I don't have direct experience. But everything I described is something that people commonly talk about when buying baby conures.

There's always the option to adopt an adult conure for your first green cheek experience. Or, if you're prepared for the horrors of puberty to come, buy that baby you've been eying (just make sure he's been weaned properly, 8 weeks is pretty young!)

I don't think you should get a cockatiel if that's not the species that's calling to you though. The risk with going for "starter birds" is that you'll always just wish you'd gotten the bird you really wanted, and the moment you feel like you have enough experience you might go out and buy that green cheek anyway. Which isn't inherently wrong but every bird deserves to be fully wanted, and you deserve the bird experience of your dreams, so don't worry too much about getting an easier/more predictable species!
 

hiriki

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(Birdie - Jenday Conure)
(Kiwi - Green Cheek Conure)
(Elby - Lovebird)
(Gorou & Liberty - Ringneck Doves)
Just as a quick rescue plug though... I found my first parrot, a conure, at a shelter. She picked me. I knew from the moment I saw her that it was meant to be, I didn't have to socialize her or work with her to earn her trust at all because she just straight up decided she liked the cut of my jib, AND she was an adult--no having to teach her boundaries around beaking, no puberty, nothing. I really think that while some rescues come with behavioral baggage, in some cases it's very much worth it for a first time bird owner to know what they're getting right out of the gate because they're bringing home an adult with an already formed personality.

The rescue near me almost always has green cheeks and virtually always has some kind of conure. If you're interested at all you might at least pop your head into a bird rescue and see if you fall in love. If not, oh well, your GCC baby is waiting for you.
 

TeekoGreenCheek

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So your wanting a conure!! 🦜
Good choice! As a green cheek conure owner 💚, if "that's your choice" I'll say this. Go in, making SURE you know what your going into..and I'll try my best to give you everything to expect. Conures are extremely smart, and also extremely needy. 👏 now this is where the fun begins. Once you own a conure there will be no more coming home from work and just kicking back to "relax" Conures require a mass amount of attention, not only in attention. But their diet as well. You cant just feed them seeds in a bag like a dog. They can easily become nutrient deficient. And lots of problems can begin with that.. if you are willing to truly put the hard work and dedication in. I'd say get a conure! It will be one of the best decisions you ever made. If you truly bond. And, don't mind a few bites here and there. Ask any conure owner. You get used to it. But it's just love bites..i wish you much luck with your new choice! But since you have owned birds before! I'm sure you know the ins and outs. But hey couldn't hurt.
 

Free as a bird

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Iv never owned a conure before but i have owned tiels and i would recommend them to anyone.

Also worth mentioning that over here in Oz tiels are much cheaper than conures.
 
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N0va

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I chickened out and went for the cockatiel, I wanna avoid the possibility of egg binding as much as possible and as much as I love conures I couldn’t handle a dive bombing pos when they hit puberty, ime cockatiels just become hissy and peck at you but only really bite if you test them too much, I just couldn’t handle a bird actively attacking me like some conures do and I’m scared if I have a knee jerk reaction to the pain I’ll hurt it. Plus I’ve kept cockatiels before, not in optimal conditions but they were fine, with the luxury of proper bird care education and products now I feel confident that I’ll be able to keep a cockatiel happy but I’m not confident I could keep a conure happy with my current lifestyle of study and work. I’m young and due to mental health concerns I’ll be living on my own wherever I go but it will probably always be in apartments so I felt a conure won’t be right for me, and finally the cockatiel I’m getting, from the videos sent by the breeder is super hand tame while I’ve only seen one pic of the conure
 

TeekoGreenCheek

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I chickened out and went for the cockatiel, I wanna avoid the possibility of egg binding as much as possible and as much as I love conures I couldn’t handle a dive bombing pos when they hit puberty, ime cockatiels just become hissy and peck at you but only really bite if you test them too much, I just couldn’t handle a bird actively attacking me like some conures do and I’m scared if I have a knee jerk reaction to the pain I’ll hurt it. Plus I’ve kept cockatiels before, not in optimal conditions but they were fine, with the luxury of proper bird care education and products now I feel confident that I’ll be able to keep a cockatiel happy but I’m not confident I could keep a conure happy with my current lifestyle of study and work. I’m young and due to mental health concerns I’ll be living on my own wherever I go but it will probably always be in apartments so I felt a conure won’t be right for me, and finally the cockatiel I’m getting, from the videos sent by the breeder is super hand tame while I’ve only seen one pic of the conure
Every person has their own choices! Any bird is a blessing to own. If the owner is willing for the work!. I'm sorry to hear you deal with mental health problems..I've suffered for years with depression. Just know you are NEVER alone. And, people can be..well..people sometimes. And it's them not you! I promise. If you ever need anything don't hesitate to ask! Best of luck with everything.
 
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N0va

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@TeekoGreenCheek thank you for the advice and the support, I really appreciate it, this forum is a very welcoming place for new parrot owners and I’m glad I joined
Here’s a picture of the white faced cinnamon pied male I’m getting

IMG_0176.jpeg
 

TeekoGreenCheek

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@TeekoGreenCheek thank you for the advice and the support, I really appreciate it, this forum is a very welcoming place for new parrot owners and I’m glad I joined
Here’s a picture of the white faced cinnamon pied male I’m getting

View attachment 57718
Wow!!!! So beautiful. You are absolutely welcome! Believe me I know how hard depression is! I suffer with mania. And, it can take a toll. And people make it worse 🙃 very exhausting! I'm the same way I love the forum. Best people ever.
 
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N0va

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Wow!!!! So beautiful. You are absolutely welcome! Believe me I know how hard depression is! I suffer with mania. And, it can take a toll. And people make it worse 🙃 very exhausting! I'm the same way I love the forum. Best people ever.
Yeah I understand the struggle too, I’m bipolar and major depressive, though birbs are cute little guys with beautiful personalities and voices that help me keep spirits high which is why I’m getting a cockatiel again and this time if I provide him the best care possible I feel we'll truly form a bond unlike any other bird or pet I’ve kept before
 
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N0va

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Are you sure it's male?
It looks like a female because of the stripes on its tail
I sure hope so because he comes with a dna certificate, Ik it’s not 100% accurate but I think it would be a pretty good bet that he’s male? He also hasn’t gone through his first molt and also I thought males were the ones that had barring on the tail?
 
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N0va

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I sure hope so because he comes with a dna certificate, Ik it’s not 100% accurate but I think it would be a pretty good bet that he’s male? He also hasn’t gone through his first molt and also I thought males were the ones that had barring on the tail?
I asked the breeder and looked it up and it seems to be just because he’s so so young, only 8 weeks, they say he’ll lose them when he molts
 

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