12week old Pied Cockatiel

by Annette

We have just brought and adopted a 12 week old pied cockatiel.. We are in Australia.

He is just beautiful and today is the first day he is home, he has already learnt to step up on our fingers and kisses and is even trying to talk back(making noises anyway)
I am quite concerned as he is quite bald under his neck area & a little under his wings in the crease. He seems to be constantly "preening" but almost plucking at his chest. He seems to stop any of this behaviour when we are talking or holding him. We havent seen him eat although he was sitting contently in his food dish.We are first time bird owners and have googled & searched many options/reasons why this may be. He was hand raised & purchased from a well known pet store(they have lots of different parrots & birds too) I will be taking him to the vet but just hoping you may be able to give us a little insite before we have a physical examination.
Thanking you

Comments for 12week old Pied Cockatiel

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Jan 12, 2011
Thankyou Tracie
by: Annette

Thanks for the tips Tracie.
I'm sure Bernie & other birds are little humans.. Lol
I gave him a mister bath today & seemed to enjoy it.. :)

We were stumped with how he got his nose bleed too! if he had of fallen the perch we would have had to pick him up.. But he is really thriving & becoming more & more comfortable everyday :)

Jan 12, 2011
Bathing question
by: Tracie

Glad all is okay. Unsure where your bird got out to hit his head hard enough to bleed, but glad he is okay.

Some birds like baths and some don't. There is no harm either way. We have one bird that loves baths, so fortunately we have Lixit water bottles or he would probably have a bacterial infection by now from bathing in his drinking water. We put a dish in, he bathes, we take it out before they start drinking the soiled water.

The other cage mate prefers to be misted. (Wouldn't you know the bather hates the mister. LOL) So you might try a Bird Mister out on him.

Jan 11, 2011
by: Annette

Thankyou Linda :)
We took him to an avian vet yesterday(11/1)& he was tested for faecal flotation, immunocomb & his stool sample taken. Bernie is eating & drinking well & was doing that by the next morning.. We are feeding him, parrot pellets(containing vitamins & minerals) mixed with a small amount of plain canary seed. He is very chirpy & talkative.. We also had an emergency rush back the avian vet as approximately 1.5hrs after getting home he began to bleed from both nostrils. We were very scared & after a trip to the avian vet she said more than likely he had hit his head & it was a "nose bleed" she checked his throat & in his mouth & said everything seemed to be ok. She also monitored him for about 10mins & allowed is to leave. During this time he was still very chirpy, happy, eating & drinking. Today he is still very much himself.
One question I do have, being as young as he is, is it normal for cockatiels to not want to bathe. I put a shallow dish of tepid water but he is more interested in being up on me than bathing..
Thankyou once again :)

Jan 09, 2011
12week old Pied Cockatiel
by: Linda

Please go ahead and take him to an Avian Vet only as dog and cat vets are not licensed or trained to care for birds and will either not do anything or kill your bird doing the wrong things.

It is quite common for birds from pet stores and some breeders to have infections usually bacterial in nature. Have the Avian vet do a throat swab to check for bacterial infections and some basic bloodwork to check for other potential problems. They should also do a stool exam to check for internal parasites and one for the skin to check for external parasites like mites. When pet stores put birds from different areas together, it is a free for all as for infections and parasites being transferred from one bird to another.

We also recommend you get him on some organic pellets like Harrison's which is carried here. Get the size grind for your size bird, and changing from seeds takes some time, so if your bird is eating an all seed diet here is a link on how to go about the change written by an Avian Vet:

Switching Birds to Pellets article

Congratulations on your new friend, and there are some books here that you would do well for reading. The internet is full of information about your bird, and you need to equip yourself with all the information you can find so you can better care for your new friend. The sweet little Cockies are wonderful pets, and make sure he is healthy and stays healthy by yearly visits to Avian Vet to make sure all is well.

Let us know how everything goes, and please do not wait to take him to Avian Vet because if he does not eat and drink for more than 24 hours, he will be in danger, so find an Avian Vet. There is a link on this page for help in finding one, and you probably already know where one is. If not, other vets in your area may be able to send you in the right direction. Just be careful not to use a regular dog and cat vet unless they are also Avian Vets which takes more years of school and on the job training, and they have the license as proof.

Find an Avian Vet


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