Glossy Black Cockatoo

 
  • Size: 19-20 inches
  • Lifespan: 20-40 years
  • Bird Species: Cockatoo
  • Colors: Black
  • Sounds: Quiet, Chatterer, Mimics, Natural Calls
  • Interaction: Social, Energetic, Playful, Affectionate, Intelligent, Friendly
  • Comparable Breeds: Major Mitchell’s Cockatoo, Yellow Tailed Black Cockatoo

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When it comes to the unique family of black Cockatoos, it’s hard not to notice their steadily rising popularity in the world of pet birds. These lovely parrots charm with their looks and their personality too, breaking stereotypes and enriching the lives of many new owners. The recent years saw a rise of these parrots in aviculture, and since then they have been increasing in numbers as pets. Even though they share a lot of similarities with their other dark-feathered cousins, the Glossy Black Cockatoo still has a lot to offer.

These exotic parrots can be great pets, as long as you provide proper care and living conditions.

These cockatoos are native to a small part of eastern Australia. They inhabit a crescent-shaped region, mostly spanning from southwest Queensland to Victoria, while also including the Kangaroo Island. The Glossy Black Cockatoo can be found in river basins, woodlands, and dense coastal forests. One of the iconic habitats for these parrots are the Casuarina trees, which also makes a big part of their diet. They adapted to thrive on the cones of this tree.

Just as the name suggests, the family of black Cockatoos has most of their similarities centered around their dark colors. But their size and a few select details, make the Glossy Black Cockatoo a unique and separate bird. With the adults reaching an average length of 19 to 20 inches (48 to 50 centimeters) and weighing a bit over a pound (500 grams), the Glossy Black Cockatoo is the smallest in the family. But being the smallest doesn’t mean they are small birds. Their size makes them very robust, with a noble and imposing appearance. You will need to ensure a lot of room for your pet to thrive. You can also consider keeping them as an aviary bird, which is an increasingly popular choice for owners of exotic breeds.

We all know that cockatoos have a worldwide reputation for their noise levels and their chatty, raucous personality. But that’s one aspect in which the black Cockatoos stand apart. True to their much more calmer personality, their noise levels are equally low and tolerable. The natural calls of a Glossy Black Cockatoo consist of a variety of squawks, but they most often simply murmur to themselves in mimicry of conversation. This is often a silly and fun pastime, especially during playtime. When kept in pairs, in aviaries, or simply when they lack attention, their loud natural calls might be more repetitive.

The simplicity of their appearance is in a sense what gives them their peculiar charm. Birds with such dark looks have an air of elegance and mystery to them, which always makes highly sought after. This all-black parrot has a few contrasting details which make them easily recognized. The males have a slightly lighter black head, and their tail feathers have a mix of red and black patches. The females are lighter black and have yellow specks on the neck and tail. This difference between the sexes will make it easy to know how to name your pet and provide better care.

A hand-raised Glossy Black Cockatoo will be much friendlier and affectionate than any other black Cockatoo breed.

In the wild, these cockatoos thrive on a varied diet. But the biggest part of it is the unique Casuarina trees and their peculiar cone fruits. Their large and robust beaks are specially adapted to break things apart. They also eat wood-boring grubs and fruit. If possible, include Casuarina seeds in their diet, but you can also base it on nuts, certain seeds, and fruits. You can also provide a whole range of special, sterilized bird toys to help them exercise the very strong and large beak. Chewed toys are better than chewed furniture!

From the size of these birds, it’s no wonder to know that they are very healthy and hardy. Most large birds like this have little to no issues when adapting to common household conditions. Their lifespan makes them good companion parrots, ranging from 20 years and upward, provided they get good care. The best tip for owners of exotic parrots is to not neglect their pet’s need for social interaction. Keeping your pet entertained will make it adapt easily and create a strong bond with the owner.

The biggest advantage the Glossy Black Cockatoo has over its cousins is their friendly and playful personality. These intelligent parrots can be very amusing, entertaining you with their inquisitive and fun behavior. If you provide a lot of toys, perches and a lot of room, you will quickly experience the spirited side of your pet. After some time with you, the  Glossy Black Cockatoo will bond deeply and show their affection. In general, these exotic parrots can be great pets, as long as you provide proper care and living conditions.

Photo credit: Thorsten Spoerlein/Shutterstock; Richard.Fisher/Wikimedia Commons; Aviceda/Wikimedia Commons


Comparable Breeds