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12

Cockatiel

(Nymphicus hollandicus)
< Alternate name(s): "Quarrion", "Cockatoo Parrot"
Aboriginal name(s): "ooya", "wiyaarr" [yuwaalaraay]; "wooraling", "wira" (WA)

Size: 31-33 cm
Weight: 88-178 g
Description     Classification     Distribution     Sightings     Photos     Breeding     Nest     Eggs     Behaviour     Food     Call/s

Physical description

Click here for a physical description

Taxonomy, classification

See Cockatiel at Wikipedia .

Range, habitat, finding this species

Click here for information on habitat and range

Sightings

Click here for sighting information

Photos

ADULT

MALE

Near-frontal view of an adult male Cockatiel
[Near Bellata, NSW, June 2014]

Lateral view of a male Cockatiel
[Near Narrabri, NSW, October 2010]

Dorsal view of a male Cockatiel
[Near Narrabri, NSW, October 2007]

Lateral view of a male Cockatiel in flight
[Near Bellata, NSW, June 2014]

Ventral view of a male Cockatiel in flight
[Near Narrabri, NSW, October 2018]

Pair of snoozing Cockatiels - male on the left, female on the right
[Yarrie Lake, near Wee Waa, NSW, July 2017]

FEMALE

Close-up near-frontal view of a female Cockatiel (photo courtesy of M. Eaton)
[Durikai State Forest, near Warwick, QLD, September 2017]

Lateral view of a female Cockatiel in brilliant evening sunlight
[Near Narrabri, NSW, October 2010]

Dorsal view of a female Cockatiel
[Near Bellata, NSW, May 2015]

Pair of Cockatiels (male on the left), perfectly camouflaged for foraging on bitumen... note the finely barred pattern on the rump, uppertail, legs and forehead of the female
[Near Narrabri, NSW, October 2007]

Two Cockatiels feeding
[Near Narrabri, NSW, October 2007]

Oi, mate, he's watching us! -- Aaah, never mind, he's harmless...
[Near Narrabri, NSW, October 2007]

Typical view of a small group of Cockatiels perched in a tree; the males have the prominent orange cheek patches
[Near Bellata, NSW, June 2014]

Lateral view of a pair of Cockatiels in flight
[Near Wee Waa, NSW, September 2012]

Dorsal view of a pair of Cockatiels in flight
[Near Wee Waa, NSW, September 2012]

IMMATURE/JUVENILE

Frontal view of a juvenile Cockatiel
[Near Bellata, NSW, May 2015]

Juvenile Cockatiel high up in a dead tree
[Yarrie Lake, near Wee Waa, NSW, November 2017]

Dorsal view of a juvenile Cockatiel high up in a dead tree
[Yarrie Lake, near Wee Waa, NSW, November 2017]

Lateral view of a very young Cockatiel; note the short crest and the brownish plumage
[Near Gunndedah, NSW, January 2012]

Behaviour

Social behaviour: Communal Mobility: Dispersive Elementary unit: Flock

Like many other species of parrots and cockatoos, Cockatiels are very sociable birds, which are usually found in flocks, or at least small groups.

Small flock of Cockatiels resting in what shade there is to be found in the crown of a tree on a hot summer's day
[Near Walgett, NSW, April 2009]

Flock of about 100 Cockatiels perched in a convenient eucalypt tree
[Near Bellata, NSW, May 2015]

Food, Diet

Adults: Seeds Dependents: Regurgitated seeds Water intake: Daily

Like basically all cockatoos and many parrots, Cockatiels are seed-eaters; primarily they take grass seeds.

Flock of Cockatiels feeding by a roadside
[Near Burren Junction, NSW, June 2012]

While the rest of the flock was feeding by the roadside, this male Cockatiel was on "sentry duty"
[Near Burren Junction, NSW, June 2012]

When a flock of Cockatiels really gets stuck into it, one can see almost only grey
[Near Burren Junction, NSW, June 2012]

Sometimes Cockatiels can also be seen to find food on the bitumen of a sealed road
[Near Moree, NSW, June 2013]

Mixed flock of Galahs and Cockatiels rising in alarm caused by the observer's car; they were disturbed while cleaning up a roadside grain spill
[Burren Junction, NSW, May 2018]

Call(s)/Song

For this species we have recorded the following call(s)/song. The interpretation of their meaning is our own; comments and suggestions for improvement are welcome.

cockatl_20160727.mp3 (NW NSW) Contact calls (male) © MD
cockatl_20140328.mp3 (NW NSW) Contact call © MD
cockatl_20140627_3.mp3 (NW NSW) Contact calls (in-flight) © MD
cockatl_20140627_6.mp3 (NW NSW) Contact calls (in-flight) © MD
cockatl_20140424.mp3 (NW NSW) Pair Q&A (in-flight) © MD
cockatl_20140723.mp3 (NW NSW) Alarm calls (in-flight) © MD
cockatl_20171115.m4a (NW NSW) Adult male with juvenile © MD
cockatl_20171115_2.m4a (NW NSW) Adult male with juvenile © MD
cockatl_20150519_2.mp3 (NW NSW) Various (with begging calls) © MD
galah_20140627.mp3 (NW NSW) Mixed flock (with Galahs) © MD

These pages are largely based on our own observations and those of our contributors. The structure of these bird pages is explained HERE. For more salient facts on any bird species please refer to a field guide.

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