Are Cockatiels Messy Birds? Tips to Maintain a Clean Home

Cockatiels are small birds, typically measuring around 12 to 14 inches in length from their beak to the tip of their tail feathers. They have a distinctive crest of feathers on their head that they can raise and lower depending on their mood. Their plumage is typically grey with yellow and white accents, although there are also other color variations available.

Behavioral Characteristics

Cockatiels are social birds that thrive on interaction with their owners. They are known for their playful and affectionate personalities, and many cockatiels enjoy being held and cuddled. They are also very vocal birds and are known for their ability to whistle and mimic sounds.

Are Cockatiels Messy Birds?

Now that we have a better understanding of cockatiels, let’s explore the topic of whether or not they are messy birds.

Factors Contributing to Messiness

Like all pets, cockatiels do require some maintenance and can contribute to a certain level of messiness in the home. One factor that contributes to messiness is their diet. Cockatiels are seed eaters, and as such, they can scatter seed hulls and other food debris around their cage. They also produce droppings, which can accumulate in their cage and on surrounding surfaces.

Another factor is their natural inclination to chew and shred things. Cockatiels enjoy chewing on toys and perches, which can lead to bits of shredded material scattered around their cage. This can also contribute to feather and dander scatter, which can be an issue for people with allergies.

Examples of Messiness

Some examples of messiness that may be associated with cockatiels include scattered seed hulls, droppings, feathers and dander, shredded toy and perch material, and spilled water or food. However, it’s important to keep in mind that the level of messiness can vary depending on the individual bird and how well they are cared for.

Tips for Maintaining a Clean Home with a Cockatiel

Despite the potential for messiness, there are several things you can do to maintain a clean home with a cockatiel.

Proper Cage Placement

One of the first things to consider is where to place your cockatiel’s cage. Ideally, it should be located in an area that is easy to clean, such as a room with hard flooring or an area with plastic floor coverings. You may also want to consider placing a mat or tray under the cage to catch any fallen debris.

Choosing the Right Cage

Another important factor in maintaining a clean home with a cockatiel is choosing the right cage. Make sure the cage is large enough for your bird to move around comfortably, and that it has a removable tray for easy cleaning.

Regular Cage Cleaning

It’s important to clean your cockatiel’s cage regularly to prevent the buildup of droppings, seed hulls, and other debris. Aim to clean the cage at least once a week, and more frequently if necessary. Remove any uneaten food and replace it with fresh food and water daily.

Controlling Feather and Dander Scatter

To control feather and dander scatter, consider placing a paper or cloth towel under your bird’s favorite perches and toys. This will make it easier to clean up any fallen debris. You can also use a vacuum cleaner with a HEPA filter to remove feather and dander particles from the air.

Mealtime Cleanliness

To minimize messiness during mealtime, consider using a seed guard or feeder that attaches to the cage and helps contain seed hulls and debris. You can also offer your bird fresh fruits and vegetables, which are less likely to scatter than seeds.

Keeping Toys and Perches Clean

Regularly clean your bird’s toys and perches to prevent the buildup of shredded material and droppings. You can use a bird-safe disinfectant to clean these items.

Regular Grooming

Regular grooming can also help to minimize messiness. Trim your bird’s nails and wings as needed, and provide them with regular baths or misting sessions to keep their feathers clean.


In conclusion, while cockatiels do have the potential to be messy birds, there are several things you can do to maintain a clean home with a cockatiel. By following the tips outlined in this blog post, you can enjoy the company of your feathered friend without having to worry about excessive messiness.

ThePetFaq Team