When Do Cockatiels Start Eating on Their Own? A Complete Guide for Bird Owners

Cockatiels have been kept as pets for over a hundred years. In the wild, they live in flocks and feed on a variety of foods. They are omnivores and eat a combination of seeds, fruits, vegetables, and insects. In captivity, cockatiels should be fed a balanced diet that includes a variety of foods.

Cockatiel Diet

A healthy cockatiel diet should consist of a high-quality seed mix, fresh fruits and vegetables, and occasional treats such as millet sprays. It is important to ensure that the seed mix is fresh and does not contain any mold or insects, as this can be harmful to your bird’s health. Cockatiels also require a source of calcium, which can be provided through cuttlebones or mineral blocks.

Cockatiel Feeding Habits

Cockatiels are small birds and have high metabolisms, which means they require frequent meals throughout the day. They should be fed twice a day, with fresh food provided in the morning and evening. It is important to remove any uneaten food to avoid spoilage and bacterial growth.

When do Cockatiels start eating on their own?

What does “Eating on their own” mean?

“Eating on their own” refers to the process where baby cockatiels transition from being fed by their parents to eating solid food on their own. This process is known as weaning.

Cockatiel Weaning Process

The cockatiel weaning process usually begins when the chicks are around 4-6 weeks old. At this stage, they will start to explore their surroundings and peck at solid foods. The weaning process can take anywhere from 6-10 weeks, depending on the individual bird.

Factors affecting Cockatiel Weaning

Several factors can affect the cockatiel weaning process, including the chick’s age, health, and temperament. Additionally, the quality and variety of food provided can also impact how quickly a chick weans.

Signs that Cockatiel is ready for weaning

There are several signs that a cockatiel is ready for weaning, including:

– Pecking at solid food
– Showing an interest in food
– Begging for food from their parents
– Being able to perch on their own

It is important to note that not all chicks will wean at the same time, and some may take longer than others.

How to encourage Cockatiels to eat on their own

If you have a baby cockatiel that is not weaning as quickly as you would like, there are several things you can do to encourage them to eat on their own.

Provide Multiple Foods

Offering a variety of foods can encourage your cockatiel to try new things. You can offer fresh fruits, vegetables, and cooked grains in addition to their regular seed mix.

Offer food in variety

Cockatiels can be picky eaters, so it is important to keep offering different types and textures of food until you find what they like.

Mimic adult behavior

Cockatiels learn from watching their parents, so you can help encourage them to eat on their own by mimicking adult behavior. This can include pretending to eat in front of them or placing food in their beak.

Tips to ensure your Cockatiel eats enough food

Once your cockatiel is weaned and eating on their own, it is important to ensure they are getting enough food to maintain their health.

Proper feeding times

Cockatiels should be fed twice a day, with fresh food provided in the morning and evening. It is important to remove any uneaten food to avoid spoilage and bacterial growth.

Monitor Cockatiel’s weight

Regularly weighing your cockatiel can help ensure they are getting enough food. A healthy cockatiel should have a stable weight and not fluctuate too much.

Consult with a veterinarian

If you are unsure if your cockatiel is eating enough food, or if you notice any changes in their appetite or behavior, it is important to consult with a veterinarian.


Cockatiels are social and intelligent birds that make excellent pets. When it comes to weaning and eating on their own, it is important to be patient and provide a variety of foods to encourage them. With proper care and attention, your cockatiel will thrive and bring you years of joy and companionship.

ThePetFaq Team