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Thread: How to wean a cockatiel?

  1. #1

    How to wean a cockatiel?

    My cockatiel, Avry, is currently 6 weeks old. I am trying to start the process of weaning. She has "Exact" brand rainbow colored parakeet pellets in her cage at all times, a dish of shallow water (1" deep) in her cage as well as a bunch of toys.

    The bottom of her cage is towels still covered by a sheet of newspaper, because she falls alot still off of perches.

    My question is, should I try using millet spray to wean her? Right now she will pick at her pellets alot, but she won't eat them. She just likes to have them in her beak until they break or go off flying.

    I moved her down to two hand-feedings a day from 3. She eats like crazy now in the morning and crazy in the evening as if she is completely starving, which tells me she isn't eating any pellets at all.

    -- Kieler.

  2. #2
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    Re: How to wean a cockatiel?

    well i've never weaned one, so i really don't have any idea, but i HAVE to reply a bit anyway. mainly because: Why are you feeding a cockatiel parakeet food!!!!!!!!!!!!!! you can get cockatiel exact rainbow pellets too (though the brand isn't so great, but if that's the brand you like......)
    please, first thing is to chuck the parakeet food and get tiel food!
    the perches should be low down, and only a couple, so as it gets used to the whole perch thing!
    as for weaning, yeah, you can try millit spray, likely she'll eat it great, but ya really want to get her eating pellets.
    ok, i recommend "harrisons" pellets, or possibly "Zupreem Natural". Exact (i think it's actualy "kaytee" brand....? correct me if i'm wrong) is full of artificial colours and flavors and has exytho................sorry, can't remember the spelling! it's a preserivitive, and some people believe it's harmful to them. try reading other posts in this forum for links and more info on it, and what brand pellets.
    i hope someone can help you, and i'm sorry i haven't been much help! good luck!


  3. #3

    Re: How to wean a cockatiel?

    I'm weaning my 3 month old cinnamon cockatiel right now. Here's what I've been doing:

    Try securing soft vegetables (i.e. lettuce leafs, green beans) to the side of the cage. They like to look for things they are able to chew on. Even though he won't ingest much of it (probably tossing a lot of lettuce bits to the floor), it'll at least introduce him to the taste of veggies. And it'll keep him occupied for hours. My cockatiel for some reason doesn't like millet spray. He might be the only cockatiel that doesn't...
    But he's starting to show interest in his seed mix.

    As for pellets, my cockatiel would have the same problem. He'd peck at pellets, but didn't quite seem strong enough to break them and eat them. So he'd sit there with one in his mouth until it broke and went flying, or he'd drop it. Try soaking pellets in water to soften them, and offer them to the bird before feeding time when he's hungry.

    But what I found works best is warm wet bread. Mush up a little corner of wheat bread with water, and microwave it for 2-3 seconds. Basically it'll look similar to formula, although having a different smell. You'll be able to "trick" the bird into thinking it's real formula. At first though, he'll be a little skeptical of the different taste so you might have to mix the bread mush with formula to get him to eat it all. But eventually, you keep reducing the ratio of formula in the bread until he's eating bread only. After some time, he'll be ok with eating bread plain. Offer different vegetables and fruits too, and try to find his favorite ones. I don't know what the "experts" think of this method, but this is how we weaned our Amazon parrot a long time ago, and it worked great. It also is working for my cockatiel at the moment!

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