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The Slender Bill Cockatoo

Keeping a Slender-billed Cockatoo (also known as Long-billed Corella) as a pet requires careful consideration and dedication, as they have specific needs and characteristics. Here’s an overview of what to expect:

General Information

  • Scientific Name: Cacatua tenuirostris
  • Lifespan: 40-60 years with proper care
  • Size: Medium to large, about 15-17 inches (38-43 cm) in length
  • Weight: Around 500-700 grams
  • Appearance: Predominantly white with a distinctive long, slender bill, and a pinkish-red coloration around the throat and base of the bill.

Personality and Behavior

  • Temperament: Social, intelligent, and affectionate, but can be quite demanding. They are known for their playful and curious nature.
  • Behavior: They require significant mental stimulation and social interaction. Without sufficient attention, they can develop behavioral issues like feather plucking and excessive screaming.


  • Cage Size: A large cage is essential; minimum dimensions of 36x24x48 inches (91x61x122 cm) are recommended. Horizontal bars are ideal for climbing.
  • Play Area: Provide a safe, bird-proofed area for supervised out-of-cage playtime daily.
  • Perches and Toys: Various perches of different sizes and materials, and a diverse array of toys to chew and play with to prevent boredom.


  • Basic Diet: High-quality pellet food should be the foundation of their diet.
  • Fruits and Vegetables: Fresh fruits and vegetables should be offered daily, such as apples, carrots, spinach, and berries.
  • Nuts and Seeds: These can be given in moderation, primarily as treats or training rewards.

Health and Veterinary Care

  • Regular Check-ups: Annual vet visits are necessary to monitor health and prevent common avian diseases.
  • Common Health Issues: Prone to Psittacine Beak and Feather Disease (PBFD), respiratory infections, and nutritional imbalances.

Social Needs

  • Attention: They require substantial social interaction and do not thrive in isolation. Daily interaction is critical for their well-being.
  • Bonding: Known to form strong bonds with their human caregivers, which can lead to jealousy if not managed properly.

Training and Enrichment

  • Training: Respond well to positive reinforcement training. Teaching commands and tricks can provide mental stimulation and improve behavior.
  • Enrichment: Regularly rotate toys, introduce foraging activities, and provide puzzle toys to challenge their intelligence.

Noise Level

  • Vocalization: They can be noisy, particularly when seeking attention or if bored. Prospective owners should be prepared for loud vocalizations.


  • Time: Requires several hours of interaction and care daily.
  • Lifespan: Owning a Slender-billed Cockatoo is a long-term commitment, potentially spanning several decades.

Considerations Before Adoption

  • Experience: Best suited for experienced bird owners who understand their complex needs.
  • Space: Requires ample space for a large cage and a safe area for out-of-cage activities.
  • Family Dynamics: Ensure all family members are on board and understand the commitment involved in caring for a Slender-billed Cockatoo.

Final Thoughts

Slender-billed Cockatoos can make wonderful, affectionate pets for those who are prepared for the long-term commitment and can meet their demanding social and environmental needs. Proper research, preparation, and a willingness to provide ongoing care and interaction are essential for a successful and fulfilling pet-owner relationship.

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