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The Good the Bad and the Ugly about Large Cockatoos

kitwit54

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My u2 is by far my most difficult bird so far and I have a greenwing and dyh the lady I got her from had got her for a 9yr old boy they arent birds for a kid they bite harder than my mac very loud but I love her it takes a certain person to take care of one.I do not recomend them as a pet.:coffeescreen:
 

moluccan326

Meeting neighbors
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Louisiana
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Rachael
I havent had Scooter my M2 for very long but I can say some things here. He is very loud! But usually stops when we talk to him or leave the room. Today he was getting impatient because I was cleaning the house and wasn't taking him out of the cage until I was done and he was being loud. I went ahhhhhhh and it distracted him and now he has a new sound he makes lol. now when he's excited he runs around in circles going hi scooter ahhhh hi scooter ahhhhhh its too funny. He can be destructive but is very good at listening when we say no. I've only had to say no one time when he peeled off a strip of my fish tank stand and he doesn't mess with it anymore. Every now and then he will walk over to it, then look over at me and walk away from it. As long as we put stuff on the floor that he's allowed to tear up he usually doesn't show interest in anything else. (as long as its something new every time he's on the floor.) He loves to tear up cardboard so now we keep any kind of cardboard we have. Usually that's enough to keep him satisfied. He does chase people. Everyone except for my dad. When he's in the mood to chase its best to stay put on the couch or wear thick shoes and socks. You def shouldn't mess with him when he's up on top of his cage. (Again everyone except for my dad.) That's his territory and when he's done being messed with he goes up there. That's the only time so far that I've been bitten (or anyone for that matter, besides my dad) was trying to get him off the top of the cage. He loves peanut butter and will pretty much do anything for anybody for that. All you have to say is peanut butter scooter and he's rushing over to get some. He doesn't like too many things in his cage. He doesn't really play with anything in there. He'd rather just talk to us or watch tv or play in his water. My dad is his favorite person. My dad can do anything with him that we can't. He doesn't bite him or chase him, and he's very comfortable with him. He loves my dad but is still very cautious with everyone else. But once he's been out for about 20 mins and sees everyone before being petted or messed with he gets excited and opens up. But if my dad is around you can forget about scooter being nice to you lol. That's the only person he wants or cares about and that's usually the main time he starts chasing people. Guess he's trying to get everyone out of the room so he can have my dad to himself haha! Oh and I haven't noticed too much dust besides some floating in my fish tanks. Looks kind of like a sheet of it covering the top of the water. He's also great about going to bed and being quiet until he's uncovered the next morning. Even this morning when he managed to pull the blanket off one side of the cage he didn't make noise until I woke up and came out there. I am 22 years old and I know other people in this thread have said young people shouldn't have them but I think it depends on the person. I'm not one to go out all the time. I'd rather stay home and be with my pets. I love Scooter already and plan on continuing to learn everything about him. All the books and websites don't even begin to explain toos. There's so much more to learn just by owning one. But I do agree every too is different. He doesn't self mutilate or even pull out feathers. He's perfectly fine in his cage for hours even without toys as long as he can see you or the tv. He just doesn't like things in his cage. I tried to put one toy in there and he just ripped it down and threw it to the bottom and never touched it again. He will tear up some toilet paper rolls if you put that in there though. He doesn't consistently scream like I've heard of others doing. He does for certain reasons but he usually stops after a few mins. And if he doesn't he will when we walk out of the room. To sum it up, every too has a different personality. They can change moods for any reason. a sound scaring them, moving too fast, anything. It is pretty much impossible to read their body language. When I was bit by him he looked completely calm and normal. Then he just reached down and bit. This has been my experience with Scooter so far. There's a lot to think about before considering a too of any kind. Ok I think I've given everyone enough to read now.
 

citronlover

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Although Vesper is only about 2 1/2, I have had him since he was six months and have some experience with him as he is growing up. Might as well add my two cents :)

The Good: The good is always very good! Vesper SEEMS to be an oddball for citrons. (from what I've seen) He speaks rather clearly from what I've seen from other videos of the same species, and his language and vocabulary become better and more diverse all the time! He uses his words and phrases in context as well. He uses a sweet, cute little voice when he wants out of his cage. And when you say 'no' to him, he listens, but not after saying a cheeky "No!" and giving you a look with his crest pressed down.
Cuddling. He is a CUDDLER. But if he's on a mission or playing, he isn't really interested. But he does give kisses, and if you have some food he likes (i.e. crackers or home baked fries) he is persistant!
And whenever he does something wrong (and he usually knows it), he will lean his head towards you and say things like "I'm a pretty bird! I'm a baby bird!" and he will rub his head on you and give you kisses. He is definitely saying sorry.
Also, when my mom has me on facetime on her phone and she puts the screen up to him, he will kiss my face on the screen :) (Whether this is coincidence or not, I still think it's cute as all heck)
He's also a very good eater and eats both his pellets and fresh fruits and veggies every day :heart:

The Bad: He gets into everything. He has destroyed the latch on his cage and we have had to resort to something else to keep the one door shut. He will nip at your fingers if you try to move his cage to clean behind it (and he is still inside). In my experience, he has also been terrified of new people. Extremely shy bird. But, he seems to be getting used to people a little earlier, and I'm hoping to socialize him more when I come home for the summer.
In addition, he doesn't always want to shower. This can lead to him becoming grumpy because he hasn't showered and his pin feathers are bothering him :rolleyes:
Oh, and bedtime is always tough. Gauging when it is the right time to put him in his cage can be difficult. He's usually VERY good, but if he's out for too long, you're in for a bit of a power struggle.

The Ugly: If you are not savvy with his body language, he can instantly become terrified of you or lunge at your face. Also be sure to keep any objects away from him that he isn't used to, otherwise he'll become all skinny and fly away! Not exactly the ugly... But I suppose when he was younger and we had a sitting hammock in the living room, he claimed it as his throne. I think this gave him a complex as he was always higher up than us, and he became extremely territorial and moody when he was on that perch. I removed the hammock, and have not had any 'alpha' battles since.

Overall I am absolutely in love with Vesper and would do anything for him :)
 

zuzanqa

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This is a fantastic thread everyone
 

Kevin Mc.

Walking the driveway
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Phila, PA
Pros:

I must have been blessed, I have a U2 & a M2 that I adopted (4 months apart). my birds are very quiet (except for the occasional morning and evening rituals, which only last maybe 5 minutes), now I work from 9-5, my wife is home all day (she's not a pet person, but does give them fresh water in the afternoon) she says they are very quiet, they play with their toys, nap & their cages are side by side, she said they talk to each other.

Cons:

Can be very destructive (if left unsupervised), did that once (went up to take a shower) & my M2 stripped a whole wall of wall paper and the U2 did a number on the curtains (lesson learned though).
Feather dust
 

amarniel

Checking out the neighborhood
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Australia
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Amarie
I'm taking care of two red-tailed blacks until the new adoptee gets back from overseas. they'll be spending their days in a 7 metre by 10 metre aviary! wow! :heart2:

they were wild-caught and horribly mistreated by a man who intended to traffic them to india. because he cut off the lower part of their wing, they can never fly again. so we cannot be releasing them back into the wild :sad11:

they're in an outdoor four metre aviary that i hired from a neighbour who has eclectus parrots. they're very sweet but wary, and they like to screech in the morning. they are very very loud! they're absolutely lovely, very picky with their food. sometimes mice are at the bottom of their aviary, trying to get the dropped nuts, and the toos find it super fun to chase after them! playful, but loud!
i can't tell you if these guys are cuddly or not because we're keeping them away from people. they like to play with ropes and shaped wood blocks - they're not interested in bells or noisy toys.

though i did learn this - large cockatoos absolutely love big rope nets! they'll spend forever swinging from it, climbing around, destroying it and placing things on it. i've found they picked up the smallest water bowl and balanced it on the net! forever finding toys to play with, that were never intended as toys :wtf:

i watched them arguing with the macaw i'm taking care of! they're so chatty, and they also try to talk to the crows and corellas around my yard. very terratorial toos.

hopefully these kids will live a wonderful life as a pair :xflove: and hell to anyone who thinks they can treat such darlings like that!
 

Bokkapooh

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Oh thats just terrible :mad: How can you cut OFF a wing! That man better be in prison. What a terrible person! And wild caught? Ugh! Just aweful! Just aweful!
 

Atul Vij

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Cocktoos are loud Actually I have 2 pairs and they whistle and all neighbors wake up in night
 

Kevin Mc.

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Phila, PA
Atul Vij
Like I said, I must have gotten a blessing from the too gods,
My two are only loud for about 15 mins a day, from 530 to 545 (and it gets really loud), that's when I get home, so I think they are just excited to see me. My wife is at home all day & she says you wouldn't even know that they were in the house. They just eat, sleep & play while I'm at work

they are on a strict schedule, out from 6am to 8am & then from 530pm to 9pm.

I've heard horror stories of toos that just wont stop screaming
 

JLcribber

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Atul Vij
Like I said, I must have gotten a blessing from the too gods,
My two are only loud for about 15 mins a day, from 530 to 545 (and it gets really loud), that's when I get home, so I think they are just excited to see me. My wife is at home all day & she says you wouldn't even know that they were in the house. They just eat, sleep & play while I'm at work

they are on a strict schedule, out from 6am to 8am & then from 530pm to 9pm.

I've heard horror stories of toos that just wont stop screaming

Not so much a blessing as hard work. They do thrive on a strict consistent schedule. My birds are the same as yours. Most of the time you would not even know they are here. :)
 

Polytelismedia

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Don Kimball
Please do not take this as a critique for those who actually own Cockatoos but as someone who has Studied Toos for months on end in the wild I wanted to offer a comment. Toos in the wild have a zillion things to keep them occupied. They can and do have play wrestling matches with others in a loose flock. They spend hours foraging with others. They have friends and also others who they simply dont like. They are in constant communication using touch both vocal and physical with others of their kind. They take great joy in flight (not something most households offer) and I have even watched Rose-breasted Cockatoos racing vehicles ( mine) just for the sheer fun of it on country roads. They scream simply for fun and joy. They are active and watchful and need to be. They do get nailed by a variety of predators in the wild. I want to offer a plea to anyone thinking of purchasing a hand-raised baby. Please please. DONT... Take that particular amount of money and travel to the particular species you love and hire a guide (it doesnt have to be me by the way... :) just anyone who is an expert) and watch/film and take joy in them in the wild. Like me YOU WILL NEVER BE THE SAME. Nor will you think the same way about the species again. That said. My hat is off to those who have had the heart and patience to rescue unwanted birds.
 

Mizzely

Lil Monsters Bird Toys
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Toos in the wild have a zillion things to keep them occupied. They can and do have play wrestling matches with others in a loose flock. They spend hours foraging with others. They have friends and also others who they simply dont like. They are in constant communication using touch both vocal and physical with others of their kind. They take great joy in flight (not something most households offer) ... They scream simply for fun and joy. They are active and watchful and need to be. They do get nailed by a variety of predators in the wild.

I feel that this describes all parrrots, not just cockatoos.
 

cassiesdad

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Please do not take this as a critique for those who actually own Cockatoos but as someone who has Studied Toos for months on end in the wild I wanted to offer a comment. Toos in the wild have a zillion things to keep them occupied. They can and do have play wrestling matches with others in a loose flock. They spend hours foraging with others. They have friends and also others who they simply dont like. They are in constant communication using touch both vocal and physical with others of their kind. They take great joy in flight (not something most households offer) and I have even watched Rose-breasted Cockatoos racing vehicles ( mine) just for the sheer fun of it on country roads. They scream simply for fun and joy. They are active and watchful and need to be. They do get nailed by a variety of predators in the wild. I want to offer a plea to anyone thinking of purchasing a hand-raised baby. Please please. DONT... Take that particular amount of money and travel to the particular species you love and hire a guide (it doesnt have to be me by the way... :) just anyone who is an expert) and watch/film and take joy in them in the wild. Like me YOU WILL NEVER BE THE SAME. Nor will you think the same way about the species again. That said. My hat is off to those who have had the heart and patience to rescue unwanted birds.
A great post. I'll add something I always say when we do our visits with our birds...

"In a perfect world, humans would have no need or desire to keep avians in their home as a "pet"...alas, this is not a perfect world"...:(

It's not a happy ending to our visits considering that Milton and the bunch bring so much enjoyment to people, but it is the truth....
 

HolliDaze

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I got a sneak preview of whats to come with dexter... Mice in the walls kept him up for part of the night and he was cranky. He spent most of the day attacking everything that moved, including my hands. He hasn't bit me nearly as hard as he will someday, but today was the hardest he's ever gotten me. Didn't leave a mark after 30 minutes. I just covered my face and ignored it. One he 'd stopped, I calmly returned him to his cage for 10-15 minutes and he was fine for the next few hours.
I took zookeeping classes, and learned something all keepers have to expect: there is a good chance the animals you care for will kill you some day. If You are a keeper, you have to accept that. With cockatoo s, you have to accept you will definitely get bit, hard. You might need stitches. If you aren't okay with that, maybe don't get a big cockatoo. I'm fine if I get a bad bite, I love dexter more than I am afraid of pain. It'll be difficult the first time I get a bad bite, but I won't stop loving him because of it.
 

JLcribber

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I got a sneak preview of whats to come with dexter... Mice in the walls kept him up for part of the night and he was cranky. He spent most of the day attacking everything that moved, including my hands. He hasn't bit me nearly as hard as he will someday, but today was the hardest he's ever gotten me. Didn't leave a mark after 30 minutes. I just covered my face and ignored it. One he 'd stopped, I calmly returned him to his cage for 10-15 minutes and he was fine for the next few hours.
I took zookeeping classes, and learned something all keepers have to expect: there is a good chance the animals you care for will kill you some day. If You are a keeper, you have to accept that. With cockatoo s, you have to accept you will definitely get bit, hard. You might need stitches. If you aren't okay with that, maybe don't get a big cockatoo. I'm fine if I get a bad bite, I love dexter more than I am afraid of pain. It'll be difficult the first time I get a bad bite, but I won't stop loving him because of it.

Attitude is everything. :)

 

Sylvester

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I have an U2 and while I really do love him, if I had to do it all over again, I would not have gotten him.
 

JLcribber

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I have an U2 and while I really do love him, if I had to do it all over again, I would not have gotten him.
I understand. If there was a way for people who want to get a parrot to peer into a crystal ball and see the actual future of their decision and see the reality instead of the "vision" of what the future would be like, a great many of them would come to the same conclusion. I might include myself.
 
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