Ask Lafeber

Question:

October 15, 2019

Cockatiel behavior Part 4


Will I eventually be able to have all three cockatiels in the same cage?


Answer:

Hi Francine,

I don’t recommend it for the reasons I’ve already mentioned. Young birds do OK, but by the time they are a year old, they are already becoming sexually mature. It is never a good idea to have an odd number of birds in a cage because one bird will be left out and will get bullied or worse. And I am not suggesting you get a fourth bird. Unless you have a huge flight cage where you can walk into it, having more than two birds in a cage is not going to work. And as I said, if you have two caged together, they will eventually bond with each other and become wild. Birds will almost always choose another bird for a companion over a human, even if the bird is the same sex. Sometimes one might like his bird companion as well as his human, but then the other bird is likely to fight with it whenever you take him out and then return him to the cage. When you try to keep more than one pet bird in the same cage, you create a situation where there will be jealousy, territorial behavior and fighting. You already have one bird that is stand offish and hard to pick up – this one will most certainly become wild if caged with one of the others. You can try two of them together, but my guess is you will have to split them up before too long and in the process, may not be able to handle the less tame bird after that. Whatever you decide, do not keep three in a cage together.

Thank you for asking Lafeber,

Brenda

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