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#228826 - 01/04/11 11:34 PM Cockatoo compared to an African Grey  
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armywifeiam Offline
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I am curious if anyone could tell me the similarities and difference between an Umbrella cockatoo and an African Grey.

I have only been around an Umbrella Cockatoo. It was my neighbors and she had to find her a new home. The bird and I had bonded and had I been able to handle and work with her screaming I would have taken her in an INSTANT. Plus my husband was scared of her..especially after seeing my hand bitten into by her, and the bird LOVED me! I was bitten when Pearl (the cockatoo) was going after her owner and I put my arm/hand in the way to try and make her stop attacking her owner. I know that she was only acting with her birdie brains and was trying to keep everyone away from me so she could have me to herself, so there is no blame on Pearl AT ALL. I, personally, could have handled her biting, it was the screaming I couldn't deal with and I could not leave her sight!

Anyway! Pearl has gone to an AMAZING home, probably, even better than I could have given her. Their children are grown so they have the time for her.

But..I'm left with a giant hole in my heart. I LOVE PEARL!
Now I would like to get a bird myself, but not before I know that I can handle it. I do not believe in adopting a pet and then getting rid of them. Which is why I did not take Pearl myself. I knew I couldn't handle her 24/7.

So...what's the difference between a Cockatoo and an African Grey?

Don't they have a webpage like this for other birds?! smile

And btw I hope to own an Umbrella Cockatoo when my kids are grown and it's just me and my husband. I just knew right now was not the right time to take Pearl...but I sure wish it had been! frown

--Christine

#228827 - 01/04/11 11:55 PM Re: Cockatoo compared to an African Grey [Re: armywifeiam]  
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For the most part, greys are more a "thinking man's" bird, while cockatoos are energizer bunnies on crack. This is of course a gross generalization!

Greys tend to like things to stay the same. They like a routine. They'd rather hang out by you than interact directly with you. You can put a grey on a playstand, and they will actually stay there. Good luck trying that with a cockatoo.

My husband is a grey person. He's calm, laid-back and quiet. I'm a cockatoo person, expressive, hyper and reactive. My toos aren't that fond of Kevin, the greys look at me like I'm from Mars.

Both species are incredibly intelligent. Cockatoos have more mechanical ability. Greys are better talkers. Both species have a tendency to over-bond to one person. It's our job as caregivers to socialize them and encourage their relationships with other people.

#228831 - 01/05/11 12:15 AM Re: Cockatoo compared to an African Grey [Re: Jacque]  
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Interesting! smile

Thanks! It sounds like I am a cockatoo person (when I don't have small children to care for.)

The way you described the grey sounds like my husband! smile

Funny that you mentioned a playstand. My neighbor and I went half and half on buying a play stand for Pearl. I was hoping that if we bought her one she would sit on her stand in whichever room my neighbor would be in, instead of screaming all the time from her cage. I was trying to help my neighbor WANT to keep her instead of selling her. I love her, but knew that I wouldn't be able to handle her, which is why I have never ran out to buy a cockatoo! Anyway, it didn't work and while I researched everything about cockatoos I never thought to research why she hated her playstand!!!

--Christine

#228833 - 01/05/11 01:05 AM Re: Cockatoo compared to an African Grey [Re: armywifeiam]  
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We only have a single Grey and two Cockatoos. So I can't speak for all of each species as a whole. But from these few I would say

Grey's are not interested in contact but are happy to be in the action.

Toos are very interested in contact and are happy to be in the action.

Grey's are much less demanding and are much better suited for life in captivity than Toos.

It is much harder to meet the needs of a Too because they are much more demanding of your attention.

Greys make a lot of noise but it is much easier to live with because it is interesting and varied. Toos tend to scream when being vocal. Which is much harder on the nerves.

#228860 - 01/05/11 04:40 AM Re: Cockatoo compared to an African Grey [Re: Michael]  
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I'm not sure where you're living, so I don't know what's available near you, but I would really recommend volunteering at a rescue and getting to know the different birds and their personalities before you take anyone home. You're going to love any bird you bring home, but birds can be much pickier and if you start out with someone who already likes you (as you experienced with Pearl) it is so much easier. It might be a species you'd never considered (that's how I ended up with my first caique.)

When I was first interested in birds, I thought I wanted a cockatoo and almost bought a U2. I realize now that would have been a huge mistake as my personality would not mesh well with one. You only mention 2 species -- there are so many more and one of them might be a better fit -- you just never know.

The above posters were very careful to disclaim that they weren't speaking about every individual, which is so true. There definitely are generalizations that tend to be true, but each individual is different and there is no guarantee.

For instance, both of my greys demand frequent contact and are extremely demanding of our time. (They fly to us and then push their necks into our fingers, for example.) Greys have the reputation of being one-person birds, but both of mine are equally tame to me and my husband. Greys have the reputation of talking well, but neither of mine talk much at all. Greys have a reputation for being afraid of new toys but both of mine fly over and investigate every new toy that's brought in the house.

Toos have the reputation of being cuddly, but I can think of many at the rescue who were anything but. Toos have the reputation of talking unintelligibly in too-ese, but I know a U2 who speaks hundreds of words clearly and in context.

If you google "greys and cockatoos" the first article that comes up is written by Sam Foster and might be of interest to you.

Thanks for doing your research ahead of time. When you do finally bring a bird in to your home, you will be so much better equipped than most people!

Also, I have not found any website like this for other birds. In my experience, much information on the web is put there by people looking to make money -- breeders, etc. They need to encourage parrot ownership to stay in business, so they don't say bad (but true) things about living with parrots, as we do here. We want people to make informed decisions, so sometimes come off a bit negative. But that's because we have the birds' best interests at heart. Just be careful when talking to people who own birds or people on the internet. How long have they owned their birds? How old are they? (Baby birds are way different from adult birds so if someone has a 6 month old and are telling you how great they are -- don't believe that's how the adult will be!)

#228863 - 01/05/11 05:46 AM Re: Cockatoo compared to an African Grey [Re: Beeps]  
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I definitely want to make an informed decision. My search may or may not lead me to a bird and if not, that's okay.

I don't want to end up with a bird that I can't handle knowing that I refuse to give up any animals I take in for adoption. If I end up where I would have been with Pearl had she been mine and not my neighbors, I will regret (even more) not taking her myself. I guess it's hard to explain. I just love the bird so much and I do with I could have handled her and the bad habits (SCREAMING) she had. BTW her new parents had her DNA tested and as of today Pearl has ended up to be a HE! LOL.

Without knowing birds it seems to me that cockatoos are the hardest birds to own.

I REALLY wish I knew of a rescue in my area. I have searched on the internet, but haven't found anything. I'm in Slidell, Louisiana, if anyone knows of one!

-Christine

#228872 - 01/05/11 02:39 PM Re: Cockatoo compared to an African Grey [Re: armywifeiam]  
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Welcome Christine! It is so refreshing to see someone doing their research before bringing home an angel and also knowing and accepting your limitations. Should you decide to adopt some feathered angel, I encourage you to stick around here in this forum no matter the species. We have such an excellent family here, with honest knowledge on just about any type of bird there is. I think you would fit in well with the Mytoos family.


Deborah
A Too is not a pet, it is a choice for life!


#228877 - 01/05/11 04:37 PM Re: Cockatoo compared to an African Grey [Re: FeatheredAngels]  
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Thanks! smile I just wish I would have felt like I could handle Pearl (cockatoo). My heart is broken now that my neighbor has sold her. Isn't that weird? I am honestly, depressed over a bird?

Luckily, she did go to a very, very good home and I am able to keep up with her on facebook. She was/is a very special bird! smile And by she I mean HE, since HIS DNA tests came back yesterday!LOL LOL!

-Christine

#228881 - 01/05/11 06:09 PM Re: Cockatoo compared to an African Grey [Re: armywifeiam]  
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Originally Posted By: armywifeiam
Thanks! My heart is broken now that my neighbor has sold her. Isn't that weird? I am honestly, depressed over a bird?

-Christine


Not weird at all, once you have been loved by a bird there is no turning back. It is as if they imprint onto your very soul. Trust me I know. I have crossed paths with many birds, some were part of our family, some belonged to others. Each has a special place in my heart forever, and I remember them all often.

Originally Posted By: armywifeiam
Thanks! smile I just wish I would have felt like I could handle Pearl (cockatoo).

-Christine


Truly I admire you for knowing your limitations and not bringing an angel into your home that might end up having to be rehomed again.


Deborah
A Too is not a pet, it is a choice for life!


#228889 - 01/05/11 09:16 PM Re: Cockatoo compared to an African Grey [Re: armywifeiam]  
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Originally Posted By: armywifeiam
Thanks! smile My heart is broken now that my neighbor has sold her. Isn't that weird? I am honestly, depressed over a bird?
-Christine


I had to start laughing when I read this line. I work at a rescue - Best Friends Animal Sanctuary in Utah. At any point we have about 100 birds on site. That might not seem like that many, but we keep the numbers small so that we have time to really know and work with each individual bird. The downside to that is....we get to know and love every bird.

This summer I found myself absolutely sobbing in my office because a cockatiel had been adopted. "Just" a little tiel... But Pippin had imprinted on my soul so deeply that I was heart-broken that he was leaving. I still miss him. But he has a wonderful life in a free flight aviary with a new person who adores him.

We are very particular about who adopts our birds. They are required to under-go a home visit, they have to spend 3 days here with us so that we can see how they work with birds and we can make sure of their level of knowledge. We talk to their vet. We do follow-ups constantly. And we retain ultimate ownership of the birds so that they have to come back here if something doesn't work out. So I KNOW the birds are going to good homes. And I'm happy for them. But it still hurts each time one leaves.

#228896 - 01/05/11 11:33 PM Re: Cockatoo compared to an African Grey [Re: Jacque]  
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Originally Posted By: Jacque
But Pippin had imprinted on my soul so deeply that I was heart-broken that he was leaving. I still miss him. So I KNOW the birds are going to good homes. And I'm happy for them. But it still hurts each time one leaves.


frown

#228901 - 01/06/11 12:46 AM Re: Cockatoo compared to an African Grey [Re: GregM]  
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Thanks Greg...I KNOW you know what I mean.

#228917 - 01/06/11 03:25 PM Re: Cockatoo compared to an African Grey [Re: Jacque]  
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There are some angels here on this forum that I have never even met ( we all know who they are ), and I will forever be touched by their stories and journeys.


Deborah
A Too is not a pet, it is a choice for life!


#228919 - 01/06/11 06:30 PM Re: Cockatoo compared to an African Grey [Re: FeatheredAngels]  
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It is so nice to hear that someone understands how I feel about Pearl!! LOL Everyone around me thinks I'm CRAZY! When Pearl first left I felt as if I had given my child up for adoption. I'm feeling better since the new owner and I have been talking online so much. So I have been getting almost daily updates! She's very patient with him (Pearl turned out to be a he. New owners had a DNA test) and he is VERY well taken care of.

What do you all know and feel about Pionus Parrots? smile

-Christine

#228920 - 01/06/11 06:51 PM Re: Cockatoo compared to an African Grey [Re: armywifeiam]  
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Hi Christine,
You really need to search for a rescue near your home. I am sure there are some within driving distance. Birds are such individuals. I have 4 Toos and all are VERY different in everyway. My Grey may be the most needy emotionally of the flock. perhaps the 4 big white ones just make her nuts :-) JK.
If you spend time with the birds, you will be chosen by the right bird for you :-) It may be an Amazon, a Tiel, or a conure~ who knows?! I hope that when your kids are grown you do still have room in your heart and home for a Too as there are always so many needing good homes (hence 4 here).....


Flock is Nina (U2), Tootsie (U2), Baby (LSC), Ruke (TAG),& Birdie (T2),
#229037 - 01/09/11 05:56 PM Re: Cockatoo compared to an African Grey [Re: Rukesmom]  
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AND! We ended up with an African Grey!

We went to a store for just birds just to see the different birds. I was very interested in an Eclectus that was there while my husband was interested in an African Grey.

He has BEEN interested in the African Greys and I had already researched them. We also went to a local vets office that has an African Grey just to visit him a few times.

The African Grey at the pet store would NOT come out of his cage and was very bitey he wasn't even an option. He also is a plucker and has a patch on his chest of feathers missing. It's not too bad yet. The story is that his previous owner had cancer and was always home with the bird when he got better he started working more and leaving the bird at home alone so he started plucking.

Anyway, we were at the pet store for about two hours and we left to go eat dinner and go home. While eating dinner we talked about birds and I looked up more info an Eclectuses and we decided to go back and take another look at her (the Exlectus.

Well, when we walked in there was a guy holding the African Grey!(he goes into the bird store every once in a while to play with the birds to keep them tame, just because) We could not believe it and the grey was even letting us touch him and hold him while he was out of his cage.

Needless to say, my husband was in love. He also convinced me with "Christine, you may be the best chance the bird has because he plucks, we can give him a good home" So....ONLY 500 dollar later plus a 300 dollar cage, a free toy, and 10 dollar bird food we are home with an African Grey named Cosmo!! Surprisingly, I held him all the way home without any major bites. Just nips.

It looks like our problems will be plucking and his nippiness.

Now..I have the question if I should take him to the vet and have him all checked out, plus a DNA test? The pet store owner said she wouldn't, because there are other birds at the vets who are SICK and then our bird would be exposed! I DO feel like I should...I mean...we go the dr with sick people and we take our cats and dogs to the vet.

Hopefully, we can give him a great home and he'll fit in with our family!

-Christine

#229038 - 01/09/11 06:09 PM Re: Cockatoo compared to an African Grey [Re: armywifeiam]  
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Of course take him to the vet! She said she wouldnt?! wow... Thats just awful. I am curious have you read the philosophy of Mytoos?

Last edited by CharlieandCasper; 01/09/11 06:12 PM.

Mandy
#229040 - 01/09/11 06:12 PM Re: Cockatoo compared to an African Grey [Re: armywifeiam]  
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Well here is the thing....First I want to know why after being a member of this board and reading about cockatoo's and parrots in captivity and knowing how many in RESCUES need homes you would go ahead and purchase a bird in a pet store for "only birds".Obviously this person has quite an operation and gets "rich" off of any living parrot they possibly can...

Also that bit of advice they gave you about not "vet checking" your purchase is a pile of dung and that goes to show what their main goal is...to either hide something about the health of this bird or just plain old giving you crap advice...either way I think the person is a _________. Not all birds going to the vet are sick...I vet mine every year for well bird visits. None of them have contracted anything...why? Well because they are TRAINED and know how to not contaminate other clients! Do you go to your Dr for a physical....there are sick people there!


Jan

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#229045 - 01/09/11 06:45 PM Re: Cockatoo compared to an African Grey [Re: Janny]  
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I COMPLETELY understand and agree with adopting a bird from a rescue and what ya'll are doing here and saying.

I was surprised to hear her say that she doesn't take her bird to the vet because of other sick birds.

Also, we went into the store only to look at the different birds. We didn't have the intentions of buying a bird. If I could have found a rescue close by with birds I would have been there. I searched and I came up with nothing close by. If it helps make ya'll feel better, this bird was not actually a petstore bird. The bird was there being sold by it's owner.

I am sure the petstore made some kind of commission, but he is still a bird.

A bird who is plucking and also needs help. A bird who wasn't getting the attention he needed. What if no one bought him because he plucks? Where would he end up? The petstore owner didn't seem opposed to "euthanizing" a bird for any simple reason.

I adopted the bird and I can give him a good home and hopefully help with his plucking.

This was not a bird who was hatched to be sold in a bird store, but a neglected bird being sold IN a pet store for the orginal owner.

I am sorry that I have offended some but I do feel like I adopted a bird that could use help and a good home. I don't believe that many people are going to walk into a pet store and adopt a bird that has plucked all his feathers out of his chest.

-Christine

#229048 - 01/09/11 07:05 PM Re: Cockatoo compared to an African Grey [Re: armywifeiam]  
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Christine I understand your feelings and many folks here have made that very same mistake in purchasing before knowing any better. The fact remains though until people stop purchasing, the cycle and plight of these angels will continue. Another bird will replace the one you just purchased, and so on and so on. That pet store owner isnt different than any other, none will vet check because it would cut into their profits. Also by not vet checking, the pet store owner has no idea if the bird is ill or not. Simply put they just dont care and may have exposed all the other birds in the store to disease. So while I understand how this little one pulled at your heartstrings, you have to accept the fact that you just supported the bird trade industry. You did not offend by purchasing but please dont try to justify what all of here clearly understand and fight against for the sake of all birds everywhere. I personally never go into a store that sells birds or pets of any kind.

Now all that being said, yes you need to vet this little one immediately. Plucking isnt always due to habit, it can be due to illness as well.

You came to Mytoos for support and you received it, along with the honest truth. I hope you will stick around for the sake of the little one you just brought into your home. Sometimes the truth is hard to hear and accept, but if we love our angels then we need to know for their sakes.


Deborah
A Too is not a pet, it is a choice for life!


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