Sulphur-crested cockatoos are big parrots that are found in wooded areas of New Guinea and Australia. They have a yellow crest that stands up on the top of their head. They are white overall except for the underside of their wings and their tail, which has a tinge of yellow. They have a black or dark-gray beak, gray legs, and the ring of their eyes is whitish. The eye color of males is typically black, while that of females is red or brown. They are 44 to 55 cm (17 to 22 inches) in length. They can live more than 70 years in captivity, but their life in the wild is 20 to 40 years. They are prone to psittacine disease, which is a viral condition in which the birds lose all their feathers and grow odd shaped beaks.
These birds have a very loud call. Their shriek is meant to travel to long distances through the forest. These birds are very often confused with the Corella that can be found in Australia. However, Corellas are smaller in size, do not have the yellow crest on their heads, and their beaks are of paler colors.
These birds can easily learn tricks and are highly intelligent; they have a very good mimicking ability. Some owners have reported that their birds can talk, but this is no guarantee that yours will do the same. They are noisy in general, and like to make noise and screech; please consider this if you are living in an apartment. Do not bother trying to train your parrot to be quiet, because this is highly impossible with all parrots in general. They are loud, and if you don't like loud, then you should consider getting another pet.
Like all parrots, cockatoos have a love for chewing. Hence, make sure that your bird always has a lot of toys that can keep it busy. One good idea is to get a big stock of toys and then rotate them every couple of weeks so that the bird always has something new and exciting in the cage to keep him/her busy and happy. Keep in mind that if these birds get too bored, they start pulling out their feathers.
These birds can be found throughout Tasmania and northern and eastern Australia. In recent years, they have been introduced to New Zealand and Indonesia. These are birds that stay in the same place all year round, and usually they can be found in wooded areas that are close to human settlements. Unfortunately, they have become established around populated areas and made a pest of themselves. They can destroy wood paneling and other stuff on houses and be a real nuisance.
The diet of these cockatoos consists of seeds, nuts, and roots in the wild. They like to eat in groups. Usually, if a flock of them is eating on the ground, then one of them sits on a high tree and keeps a lookout for predators and other potential dangers. They bite off branches and twigs when not eating, to play with and keep their bills trimmed down when in the wild.
When breeding, these birds find tree hollows, and lay down wood chips as bedding. They lay from one to three eggs in the nest. Both the parents take turns sitting on the eggs and incubating them to keep them at the right temperature. The chicks usually hatch after 25 to 27 days. The period until which they learn to fly is called nestling, which lasts from 9 to 12 weeks. The time when they begin learning to fly is called fledgling. They continue to stay with their parents for a few months.
These birds are considered easy to breed in captivity. The only thing to remember is to move the male to a different cage in case of multiple birds, because he can turn mean. It is also recommended that a large aviary is used to help prevent any accidents. However, instead of breeding them, adopting one that needs a home is a better option.