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The Good, the Bad and the Ugly about Small Cockatoos

Bokkapooh

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Love the posts. Love the bare-eyed pics.

If I were to get a cockatoo in the future, it'd have to be either a rose breasted or lesser sulphur. Speaking in general it seems they're identical in personalities (varies by birds which is why I said general). What are thoughts on deciding between the two? (no pun intended)
Galahs and sulfur crested cockatoos are very different birds. Many would refer galah cockatoos as the African greys of the cockatoo world. Sulfur crested cockatoos, galeritas, tritons and the Citron and even the timnor are very different. More hands on. Needier. Louder. Etc.
 

Odin

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@Bokkapooh , what about the goffins? Where do they fit?
 

cassiesdad

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Galahs and sulfur crested cockatoos are very different birds. Many would refer galah cockatoos as the African greys of the cockatoo world. Sulfur crested cockatoos, galeritas, tritons and the Citron and even the timnor are very different. More hands on. Needier. Louder. Etc.
Spot on @Bokkapooh ...Cassie was a LSC, and you described her perfectly. Never have had the pleasure of having a Galah in my life, but reading about them here would make me think that they're quite the opposite of LSCs. Both great species, but different in so many ways...
 

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Very good. What I meant by similar is compared to the larger cockatoos in size (not the same, but "smaller" than) and loudness (but because they're also cockatoos doesn't mean they're always quiet either :D) Sounds like a galah is right up my alley. Eventually. Not very many around here.
 

Bokkapooh

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odin post: 2342016 said:
@Bokkapooh , what about the goffins? Where do they fit?
Many cockatoo rescues say goffins are like mini umbrella cockatoos. But I am not too experienced with goffins and have been told they can be nippy. Like a corella or galah. But their attention demands are the same level as an umbrella.

Larger species of cockatoos do not tend to be nippy like the smaller guys but their bites are worse, of course.

I am not an expert of all the species. I like the large whites best (sulfur crested, mollucan and especially the umbrellas).
 

Smbrds

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I love the white ones too. A friend of mine had a moluccan that would sit with me on the couch and would snuggle against my chest while I pet her. But her galah I think I handled better but never stayed still. Lol. I'd like to get to know a sulfur crested and then a galah again.
 

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What are thoughts on deciding between the two? (no pun intended)
I like the larger white cockatoos myself. Although I have a goffin's and a large sulfur. The goffins is kind of a nut. When she's acting goffin's-like, she like a spoiled little brat. She's very cute, likes to bounce around but can pout and bite if she feels you aren't doing what she wants. She is a rehomed bird and as a consequence, has some other weirdness about her. I'm under the impression that day to day life with her is not like it is with all cockatoos. She's not terribly snuggly. Sometimes she wants a scratch, but her signal for when she's had enough is either a bite or good intuition on my part to withdraw my hand when I get "that feeling" that a bite is forthcoming if I don't. She's not a bad biter, just a little snot at times. She also is a plucker. The goffin's is actually quite like those yellow minion cartoon characters if you watch any of those movies.

My sulfur crest is one of my perfect birds now that she's older and we've worked through our issues. She used to pluck but doesn't now. She's a nice medium for cockatoos. A little less needy than umbrellas and moluccans, but still plenty snuggly and easy to read. She can have her brat moments too, but its usually more about trying to get the better of me than just generally crabbiness and unpredictability. Since I don't flinch or respond with fear, her attempts at world domination are short lived and her bites tend to be more of a small shallow cut than a major puncture or stitches situation. She bites and it bleeds about once every 1-3 years. She can try to catch me off guard with a quick nip, but I wouldn't call her day to day nippy. She has a sadistic sense of humor.

For people that aren't quite up for the full cockatoo experience, a galah might be their perfect medium. They have some cockatoo tendencies but generally seem less emotionally complicated. More like an inbetween cockatiels and cockatoos. Sulfure crests and goffin's fall squarely into the white cockatoo personalities. Sulfurs more so, but goffin's are not necessarily uncomplicated or easier. Just a slight tendency toward a different set of complications within the spectrum.

BTW, I did have a wild caught lesser sulfur crest as a child. Being wild caught and tamed by my parents that were afraid of him, we never saw the snuggliness. He did like to hang out with people, liked to have his neck scratched, did a lot of the same stuff, body language and behaviors that my large sulfur crest does. I think he might have been more likely to dance and do crest up display and bounce. But he was still calmer and less small child bratty than my goffin's. Sulfurs are a little more dignified about things and convinced of their own regal superiority. Goffin's are really like those little minions.
 
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Smbrds

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Hehe. Cute. And I love the minions and have the movies.

I'll just have to get some experience around sulfur crests. I only have had experience in the past with a galah (I sometimes say rose breasted). Around 10 years ago I was at a friend's who had one and a moluccan. The moluccan I sat down with, snuggled against my chest and let me scratch and pet her head as she was also scratching with her food. The galah would rip a pimple off my face and waddle off onto the couch as I was sitting to get into mischief. I even thought then that even though I such a great moment with the moluccan, the galah was more manageable for me - almost like my cockatiel but in bigger size (and more volume, etc). I was over her house a lot and she had 12 birds, 2 of them being the above cockatoos and the screams and squawks of the moluccan didn't bother me more so her being on her cage pacing and playing and then potentially launching (she never did, but a possibility). I'd have to get used to cockatoos again because it's been so long. But I have a relative of theirs. :D
 

aooratrix

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I have Gossamer, a slenderbilled cockatoo. I was captivated by the relationship an Australian woman had with her SB2 on the old Nature "Look Who's Talking" documentary. I think that's the title. I did what research I could, but there isn't a lot of info out there on them as companions. I found that they can be independent, extremely intelligent, and verbal. The size also appealed to me. But good luck finding one. Many years later, I had the opportunity and here we are!

Gossamer is now 2; she'll be 3 on March 21st. She is not noisy. She calls put in the language of her people when "killing" a toy, but I don't find it to be loud. There's a definite difference between "noisy" and "loud". They are reputed to be the best 'too at talking, but she doesn't hold a candle to Milty the U2. She says "hello", "whatchu doin'", "love you", "would you step up?", & "night-night". She recently started calling Harry, my BTM, by name, also.

Gossamer is not cuddly, like many other 'toos, but she is hands-on. In fact, she barely tolerates any scritching. She has a TON of energy, so I think she doesn't have the patience to sit still that long. The G-Girl is like a big, fluffy caique in terms of energy level. She loves to lay on her back behind my neck when I'm watching tv and to roll around on my lap.

I would say she does live up to the intelligence aspect of the generalizations used to describe them. She is flighted and will fly to me, my mom, and a playstand/Java tree on request. She will play dead in my hand, give kisses, wave, and spread her wings, too. With props, she will put a coin in a bank, dunk a basketball, and fetch an object on request, even if she has to fly it back from a short distance.

Gossamer loves to play and hang upside down in her cage. However, she doesn't enjoy big blocks of pine, preferring shreddable toys, yucca chips, and small groovy wood blocks. Her favorite toy is an acrylic toy with bells and beads inside acrylic columns.

She is a good eater, but typically takes a bite and drops the food item. When her bowl is empty, she forages on the grate (covered with paper), so I have to keep it extra clean. She only tolerates baths, which I suspect is due to her species' indigenous habitat, Australia. I don't think they get much rain where her wild cousins live.

Overall, she is a delightful companion!

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aooratrix

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And yet, she can be a willful wild child, but I love her deeply. Thanks!
 

Raa

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Long Billed Corellas os what we call them in Aus. They're getting more and more popular as pets over here. I had a friend with one, Ziggy, and she was a ham. Total pretend drama queen, and her bluffing a bite was just hilarious.
 

aooratrix

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Long Billed Corellas os what we call them in Aus. They're getting more and more popular as pets over here. I had a friend with one, Ziggy, and she was a ham. Total pretend drama queen, and her bluffing a bite was just hilarious.

Gossamer will mouth me when she gets wound up, but nothing close to a bite. Cool name.
 

Raa

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Ziggy would bluff, and if you failed her test she wouldn't like you. She went through a stage where there were only a few people who could handle her. Eventually she calmed down, but she was a bit of a buthead for a while.
 

aooratrix

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Ziggy would bluff, and if you failed her test she wouldn't like you. She went through a stage where there were only a few people who could handle her. Eventually she calmed down, but she was a bit of a buthead for a while.

It happens. Cockatoos will be cockatoos.
 

Lori C.

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The Good, The Bad, The Ugly: Goffin's Cockatoos.

I've shared a good chunk of my life with Cherry, my rehome. She is the light that gets me through most days(shhh, don't tell the hubby I said that). But it hasn't all been sunshine and sweetness.



THE GOOD
: In the wide array of cockatoos available, there aren't many as clownish as the Goffins. My family has had the white Australian 'toos, Umbrellas-- but none had the same playful, impish nature as the Goffin. They're smart, chatty, and incredibly affectionate. Cherry isn't as velcro as an M2 or U2, and can play on her own and keep herself busy-- but in the same breath, if we INVITE her over, she'll turn into a down-right cuddleslut.
Most Goffin's are AWESOME family birds. While Cherry is undoubtedly mine and bonded to me, she will go to and play with anyone. Even complete strangers!

THE BAD
: Goffin's are prone to being afraid of the dark. I don't know what this is-- but many people and even two vets mentioned it to me. And, it was true with Cherry through her early years. Every time a light turned off, she'd cry for upto an hour. This was not because of a cage-- she's never been caged in our home except when we leave for extended periods. It was just discomfort and fear in the dark.
Another downside: TOO SMART! They are master escape-artists! We just came from Ol' Miss, to Portland via plane-- and if it hadn't been for zip-ties, Cherry would have let herself out of the carrier on the plane. It was incredibly close! Likewise, we had to have the feeder-doors welded shut on her rarely-used cage because she would open them. I originally wrapped them in chain and used a pad-lock, but then she unscrewed the doors from their hinges. :eek:

THE UGLY: Goffin's Cockatoos can be nippy. Cherry isn't bad, until she gets really excited. When she's hormonal and excited, HOO BOY! Today, she got me right in the nostril! OW!
These awesome little 'Toos are also some of the worst pluckers and mutilators; especially when their sharp little minds aren't stimulated. Most people seem to think that only the large cockatoos suffer this, but two of the worst mutilators I've ever seen were Goffins. Cherry was a plucker before she came to me, and still barbers -- but it's way better than what it was. They have to be kept busy and mentally occupied or they really seem to self-destruct.
I totally agree with this... I have a G2 who is approximately 20 years old... She is a rehome... We had her for almost a year now... She is a real character and mischievous. Tika (our G2) is a very loving too... She is very attached to both my husband and myself but not friendly with anyone else. If a stranger holds her u don't take your eyes off her or she will lay her beak into them real quick..

As far as being afraid of the dark, we haven't had a problem with her.. Once she gets covered she knows it's bedtime. . However, if the t.v. volume is up higher than she likes, Tika will start to chatter until we turn it down to HER liking....lol...
 

macawpower58

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I've had my G2 Sweden, for about 21 one years, I got her as a 3 month old.

She's had a few episodes of hormonal aggression, but nothing that IMO was too hard too handle.

She's got her favorite people, but pretty much likes everyone. She can be a little schizoid with new things (nail polish for one), but generally accepts whatever I throw at her.

She's an attention hog, and always in motion. She's hilarious, and if you laugh, that behavior is now cemented in her brain.

She loves to snuggle, and will sit on my shoulder for hours. She does have an overload limit, and when that hits, you may get bit. Her bites are fast and sharp. They hurt, but I've never had any real damage from one.

She has a limited vocabulary, but will use her words in fairly good context. She's also very mechanical, and if it can come apart, it does, and if it can't come apart, it still may. She once took out every screw on the top railing of my deck.

She will not go to bed without at least some vocal dissension, but she also tells you when it's 'bedtime for the webird'.

She's a keeper. :heart:

 

Odin

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She once took out every screw on the top railing of my deck.
OMG!!! I am finding out new and wonderful things about small Toos' Boo is amazingly smart, he is terrified of things in the hand (sticks etc) but overall, he is adjusting very well. I do find his behavior is different with different people. He will dance and clown for my husband, and kiss and cuddle me. But he won't do those things in front of the other... LOL. Almost like he wants to keep some antics secret.
 
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