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There are 21 species of cockatoos, which are parrots known for their beautiful crests and large size. The umbrella cockatoo, also referred to as the white cockatoo, is the one most people think of when they hear of pet cockatoos but others, including the sulphur-crested and Goffin's, are also popular. Although you can easily find a cockatoo in Johannesburg, before introducing any parrot into your family, it's important to understand the unique needs of these complex creatures.

Cage Requirements

Cockatoos are large birds, so they require large cages with wide bars that are appropriate for climbing. The cage should be durable and sturdy, as a cockatoo can dismantle a cage with its large, strong beak and escape quite easily. A large cage will keep your bird comfortable while providing it with a territory to call its own, which is important.

Dietary Needs

You shouldn't feed a pet bird a diet exclusively made up of seeds, as this can lead to health problems. Instead, choose specially formulated pellets designed for cockatoos and then supplement with seeds, nuts, fruits and vegetables. This will ensure your pet gets all of the nutrients it needs to thrive.

Activity, Interaction, and Exercise

Cockatoos are extremely intelligent parrots who love to be around people, play with toys, and learn tricks, words and short phrases. Spending time with your bird each day will prevent it from becoming bored, anxious and stressed. This is especially important because birds are animals that live in flocks in the wild and get plenty of attention from one another. As the owner of a cockatoo, you'll need to pet your bird, show it affection and interact with it outside of its cage in order to prevent health problems and stress-related ailments like self-mutilation through feather plucking. If you cannot properly care for your bird, you can rehome a cockatoo in Cape Town.

Before you adopt a cockatoo in East Rand, keep in mind that these birds require a lot of patience, as they can get loud and they may even go through phases of being a bit aggressive. Training your parrot by handling it at a young age will ensure it grows accustomed to being around people and will be well adjusted. These birds make great pets when they're properly cared for, nurtured, and allowed to act on their natural instincts.