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Thread: Sexing a Cockatiel by Behaviour?

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    Brand New Egg uselesspigeon's Avatar
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    Sexing a Cockatiel by Behaviour?

    Hi! I have 2 cockatiels, my first cockatiel, Phoenix my grey male, is now 11 months old. I got a 12 week old Whiteface Pearl Pied a couple of days ago who we called Domino. Phoenix has been interested in Domino only when Domino is in or on either of their cages, his cage being Phoenix's old cage. If Domino is not at one of the cages, Phoenix couldn't care less. But when he is interacting, or trying to, he asks for head scratched from Domino. He occasionally grabs Domino's tail or wing. He has shown zero interest in bonding romantically with Domino and only shows interest to me and any foot he sees with heart wings. He hasn't flirted once, so I don't believe he is trying to mate with Domino like he would with a female. Domino also doesn't like him touching him and has biten him (softly, thankfully) when Phoenix attempts to grab or perch on him. Phoenix has done "the deed" on feet before, so I know he knows how to mate, but when he will sometimes try and stand on Domino, its never in a mating position, but rather stands sideways, usually on the end on Domino's tail. He has met another tiel before and tried to stand on her head, also no flirting behaviour.
    Domino is fairly vocal, so we've been learning towards male, as was the pet shop staff (who have extensive knowledge). But with Phoenix's behaviour it has me 50/50 on gender. I also know Phoenix is very interested in other birds and gets extremely excited if he hears another bird on a video on my phone (a favourite of his being Merle the Tiel haha).
    Is Phoenix trying to make friends, as he only tries to preen Domino's head or neck and mutual preening is used to establish bond between flock mates and eliminate any anger, or is he just very bad at flirting and I have a female?
    I am dying to know what gender I have and as I said, the chattiness of Domino has me leaning towards male a bit more. Can anyone help please? I cannot find any information regarding this anywhere and am so curious.
    Thanks

    Note: I have been informed that based on Domino's pattern alone he is most likely male as young female pearls will be covered in pearls and most young male pearls will be scarce in the pattern, such as Domino. He only has pearls on half of his wings and a tiny slither on his neck.

  2. #2
    Tailfeather
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    Re: Sexing a Cockatiel by Behaviour?

    Hi, CD, and welcome to the community. Congrats on bringing home Domino! Being only 12 weeks old, he or she is just a baby. Generally, they are about 9-12 months old before they get hormonal, and begin mating. Being older, Phoenix right now is most likely considering Domino as a baby, and would not be trying to mate with him or her as yet.

    You can get sexing kits on line and the instructions will be included. I believe it is simply pulling a few feathers according to instructions, sending them back, and the company will send you the result. You also could have an avian in your local area do the testing. You would need to find out the cost of both possibilities.

    Pearl tiels are beautiful. At Domino's young age, he is still getting feathers, and pearls. At about a year old a pearl tiel has a hard molt. At that time, if the pearls all lighten in color, and the molt results in a bird with what I call shadow pearls, you then have a male. If the bird keeps all the pearls the bird is a female.

    Females are very docile and loving. They generally do not learn to speak words, do not do heart wings, do not learn to whistle tunes, and their sounds are more of a cheeping sound.

    Males are very active, and can whistle tunes, the wolf whistle, speak many different words, and also do the "rub rub" exercise on perches, or toys, or on our hand. They are very intelligent.

    Usually, even if the birds were old enough to mate even now, it is more of an attraction at the onset. Like humans, birds are not attracted to every bird. In your case, in my view, it would be several months before mating would happen, due to age difference at this time. And also, they can mimic the opposite sex behavior. So, it really is difficult to judge when or how they may get along with each other as time moves forward. But for now, your best bet is to watch them interact with each other. And let nature take it's course.

    Do a Google search as follows:. Behavior of male cockatiels. Then do the same for females. There is great info online about these beautiful, people loving, and unique pets. I have homed both males and females for about 20 years! They are truly the sunshine of my life! And I have homed budgies for even longer! I love all birds, and I feel they make awesome pets. I have had females lay eggs as well. But they were single hens, without a mate.

    I hope this info is of help to you. We will welcome your updates anytime.
    Last edited by maxollie; 06-10-2020 at 10:40 AM.

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    Re: Sexing a Cockatiel by Behaviour?

    Thanks Ellen! I was hoping it was just Phoenix attempting to parent or make friends and he wasn't just bullying Domino around or trying to mate. Thank you so much for taking away that worry. I think I might get Domino sexed.
    Thanks again for your help!

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    Tailfeather
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    Re: Sexing a Cockatiel by Behaviour?

    You are most welcome. Please feel free to stop by and give updates. Babies grow and change everyday. When Domino matures more in the next few months, I feel the two will be best friends, no matter their sex. P

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    Re: Sexing a Cockatiel by Behaviour?

    Since posting this I have noticed Phoenix doesn't pester Domino as much (thankfully haha). He has layed off being so in his face. The two of them happily just sit together lately for the most of the time. Phoenix still pushes for pats sometimes tho haha.
    I also have a feeling Domino might be a little boy. He has started learning to talk and does "baby chatter" (as i call it). I remember when Phoenix use to do it too. He's growing up so much every day! I'll definitely have to keep updating this thread with Domino updates. He's growing up so fast!

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    Re: Sexing a Cockatiel by Behaviour?

    Oh, they change so fast, the first few weeks! I used to be kind of sad to see that happen! The very young ones just melt my heart!!! They really are like human babies to me! Yes, it does sound like Domino may be a little boy. Time will tell, but being that verbal already, it sure seems like it. They are doing well together! That is great!!!

    Unless a person is very interested in breeding, I think ideally, two males are great, because then you do not have to deal with mating and eggs, and babies! And usually they get along well together.

    We will watch for updates.
    Last edited by maxollie; 06-13-2020 at 11:25 AM.

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