Nymphicus hollandicus

Description

The Cockatiel is an unusual member of the cockatoo family. It is small in size, and has a slender body and long pointed tail, which are more the characteristics of the smaller parrots. Its plumage is mostly grey, paler below, with a white wing patch, orange cheeks and a distinctive pointed crest. The male can be identified by its bright yellow forehead, face and crest. Young Cockatiels resemble the adult female, although the young males usually have a brighter yellow face.

Distribution

The Cockatiel is widespread throughout mainland Australia.

Lifespan

The life expectancy of a Cockatiel is 10 - 14 years in the wild.

Size

The size of the Cockatiel is 30 - 33 centimetres in length and weighs approximately 93 grams.

Diet

Cockatiels feed on a variety of grass seeds, nuts, berries and grain. They may feed either on the ground or in trees, and always in small to large numbers.

Habitat

The Cockatiel inhabits open country, usually near water. It is common throughout its range, especially in the north and the more arid inland areas.

Breeding

Breeding season is most common between July and December but can breed at any time. The female will choose and prepare the nesting site, usually up high in a hollow tree. 2 - 9 eggs will be laid, both the male and the females will incubate the eggs for about 19 days. The young will usually stay in the nest for a further 30 days after hatching.