Breeding behaviour of Quaker Parrots

by Hazel
(Weston, NSW, Australia)

In the last few days my Quakers have started some very unusual behaviour. They are in a cage with a pair of Cockatiels, and in the past there have been no problems, although the male Quaker is the dominant bird.
Recently, he has started picking the female Cockatiel up by her crest, pulling feathers out. He gets very restless when I hold him, trying to fly around the room, etc.
To coincide with this, the female has started making a noise like a squeaky toy and bobbing her head, while claiming a shelf in the aviary previously claimed by the male Quaker as his territory.
Is this a mating ritual, or does she have something stuck in her throat? I'm new to this business!

Comments for Breeding behaviour of Quaker Parrots

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Sep 08, 2011
Breeding behaviour of Quaker Parrots
by: Linda

Hi, I'm Linda, and you cannot put these two species together for any reason much less in a very tense breeding situation. If your male Quaker has not already killed the Cockatiel hen, then remove both of the Cockatiels to another cage. As Tracie said, unless you're interested in breeding the Cockies, separate them too.

More aggressive species cannot be housed together with a more docile species like the Cockatiels and though they may appear to get along for a while, eventually they will not. Parrots are exotic wild animals, and they kill each other if forced to live in this kind of situation. In this case, the little Cockies will be the ones to die or be severely injured.

I suggest you take the "squeeky" voiced bird to an Avian Vet in your area immediately. Actually, before any breeding, all birds have to be examined and cleared for infections as these are passed onto the babies, and they die shortly if not treated for infections. Have avian vet check her for injuries that could have caused this and for infections of any kind. Sick birds are dead birds in the wild because either the flock kills them or drives them out to die alone as sick or injured birds bring predators which is not tolerated in the wild. The Quaker may have tried to break her neck and hurt her, so please don't delay taking her into avian vet.

Your male Quaker is upset because of the other birds in the cage as he and his mate may be interested in breeding or just time alone. He will continue to be like this until the Cockies are out of cage or will kill them to get them out of cage. Once you put birds together as a pair, they stop being your pets and become more what they were meant to be which is wild birds capable of wild behaviors. A bonded pair need us to feed, water and clean them and will not need so much of the human touch anymore. Breeding pair bonding means losing them as pets for the most part and should be done knowing this from the beginning.

Before thinking about breeding, you have to understand all the problems and expense involved in this project. You also have to know how to handfeed baby parrot formula with a syringe, because it is a learned skill from what temperature the formula should be to how to safely use the syringe to keep from aspirating babies.

Talking with some breeders in your area and having one of them teach you all you need to know would be good if they have the time to do so.

We appreciate you writing and hope it's not too late for the Cockies. Keep us posted.


Sep 08, 2011
Quaker parrots with other birds
by: Tracie

I can't answer the breeding question, but Linda will probably read this and answer that question.

I CAN say separate these birds immediately. If the Quaker parrots are male and female, separate them too. If you are wanting to breed them, don't know from your post, then study and help another breeder before moving forward with that.

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