Last Updated on November 24, 2023 by Ali Shahid
One of the most amazing parts of the parrot world that I have observed as an avian physician is the enormous range of mutations. The Ashenfallow Cockatiel is one mutation that has sparked a lot of curiosity.
These uncommon color variants within the popular cockatiel parrot species have a distinct look. Ashenfallows, unlike regular grey cockatiels, have pale grey plumage with no yellow spots, making them highly sought after by bird lovers worldwide.
They are adored as house pets and treasured companions and are well-known for their ease of reproducing. These gregarious birds excel at whistling and may be taught to sing along with tunes.
They have an innate need for human connection, frequently perching on their owner’s shoulders or head. If you are thinking of getting an Ashenfallow Cockatiel, this article will provide you with all the information you need to make an educated selection.
Origin and History of Ashenfallow Cockatiel
It is thought that the Ashenfallow Cockatiel originated from a rare variation of wild cockatiels that lack yellow or orange coloring. However, there is little historical or breeding data on this particular mutation. They live largely in the Outback, which is located in northern Australia, and are widely scattered across the country, with a larger population in the southwest.
These little parrots are members of the cockatoo family and are the world’s smallest cockatoo species, weighing around 2 to 3 ounces and reaching just 10 inches in length. A wild cockatiel has dark brown or gray plumage with yellow heads and orange cheek circles in its natural habitat. Compared to the females, the males have a more colorful plumage.
Cockatiels are endemic to mainland Australia, where they may be found in a variety of environments such as wetlands, scrublands, bushlands, grasslands, savannas, and open forests.
They flourish in environments with surrounding bodies of water, such as lakes or rivers, as well as open regions or woods. Notably, they are missing from the most productive parts of Australia’s southwest and southeast, as well as the harshest Western Australian deserts and the Cape York Peninsula.
Size and Coloring
The Ashenfallow Cockatiel is a medium-sized parrot with long graduated tail feathers that is 12 to 14 inches in length. This bird is a cockatiel color variety that is closely related to the cinnamon cockatiel mutation.
The Ashenfallow Cockatiel has gray plumage that is lighter on the underside, with a mix of white, blue, and gray colors. Female Ashenfallow Cockatiels, in particular, have a more brilliant yellow colour on their forehead and breasts than males.
These birds’ coloration is caused by two pigments: melanin, which is responsible for the gray tone in the feathers, eyes, beak, and feet, and psittacofulvins, which are responsible for the yellow face and tail colors, as well as the orange cheek patch.
When both pigments are present, the gray hue of melanin takes precedence over the yellow and orange tones produced by psittacofulvins.
Ashenfallow Cockatiels are known for being kind and sociable. They build rapid ties with their human companions and have an inquisitive and lively disposition. Their lively and funny attitude shows through, especially when they demonstrate their skills as great whistlers, frequently serenading their loved ones with wonderful whistle serenades.
These endearing birds like nothing more than cuddling on their favorite person’s shoulder in their spare time. The location of their crest feathers might indicate their attitude. When their crest feathers stand straight up, it indicates surprise or increased curiosity.
A calm cockatiel, on the other hand, will have slightly held-back crest feathers as well as softly fluffed cheek feathers, and you may even hear the pleasant sound of it slowly grinding its beak.
These calm and friendly birds enjoy being petted and handled. However, they may not enjoy snuggling in the usual sense. Instead, they simply want to be around you and will be overjoyed to see you when you come around.
Ashenfallow Cockatiels vocalize beautifully and tunefully. Their musical playlist includes whistles, chirps, and the occasional mimicking of particular sounds. However, they may not be as good as some other parrot species at mimicry.
Males are much more vociferous than females, frequently adopting complicated whistles to seduce possible mates or relay signals among their flock.
Caring for Ashenfallow Cockatiel
Housing and Enclosure
- Cage Size: Providing a spacious and comfortable living environment is crucial for the well-being of Ashenfallow Cockatiels. The minimum recommended cage size for a single bird is 18 inches by 18 inches by 24 inches (46 cm x 46 cm x 61 cm). However, larger cages are always preferable, especially for pairs or small flocks.
- Cage Accessories: Inside the cage, provide perches of varying thicknesses and textures to exercise their feet. Additionally, include toys and mental stimulation devices to keep them engaged and prevent boredom. Ensure the cage has secure locks and doors to prevent escapes.
- Outdoor Aviary: If possible, consider providing your Ashenfallow Cockatiels with access to an outdoor aviary during suitable weather conditions. This allows them to experience natural sunlight, fresh air, and a more enriched environment. Ensure the aviary is secure to protect it from predators.
These birds are generally good at self-maintenance, but they may require occasional nail trimming and beak filing if they don’t wear them down naturally. Be cautious when performing these tasks and consult a veterinarian or experienced bird groomer.
Ashenfallow Cockatiels enjoy bathing, which helps them keep their feathers clean and healthy. Provide them with a shallow dish of lukewarm water for their bathing pleasure.
Diet and Feeding
- Natural Diet: In their native habitat, Ashenfallow Cockatiels primarily feed on a diet of seeds, nuts, fruits, and occasional plant matter. Their strong beaks are adapted for cracking open hard-shelled seeds and nuts found in the rainforest.
- Captive Diet: In captivity, it is essential to replicate their natural diet as closely as possible to ensure their health and well-being. A balanced diet for pet Ashenfallow Cockatiels includes high-quality cockatiel seed mix, fresh fruits such as apples, bananas, and oranges, as well as vegetables like leafy greens and carrots. It is also crucial to provide a source of calcium, such as a cuttlebone or mineral block, to support their bone health.
- Fresh Water: Access to fresh, clean water is vital for these birds. Be sure to change their water daily to prevent the growth of harmful bacteria and algae.
- Dietary Considerations: Avoid feeding them foods that are toxic to birds, including chocolate, caffeine, alcohol, and avocados. Additionally, consult with an avian veterinarian or experienced breeder to determine the specific nutritional requirements of your Ashenfallow Cockatiel.
Common Health Issues
Ashenfallow Cockatiels can experience a variety of health problems and illnesses. Common health issues in these birds include:
- Respiratory Infections: Cockatiels are prone to respiratory diseases caused by bacteria, such as Chlamydophila psittaci, and fungi, such as Aspergillus. Symptoms of respiratory illnesses in cockatiels include wheezing, coughing, sneezing, and difficulty breathing.
- Parasitic Infestations: Mites, lice, and worms can invade a cockatiel’s body, leading to serious health issues if left untreated. Symptoms of parasitic infestations may include itching, weight loss, and respiratory problems.
- Nutritional Diseases: Ashenfallow cockatiels, like other cockatiel breeds, can suffer from various nutritional diseases due to an inadequate balance of vitamins and minerals in their diet. Common nutritional diseases in cockatiels include fatty liver disease, vitamin A deficiency, goiter, metabolic bone disease, obesity, and calcium deficiency. Symptoms of nutritional diseases may include poor growth, unkempt feathers, flaky skin, and anemia.
- Gastrointestinal Yeast Infection: Cockatiels can develop gastrointestinal yeast infections caused by Candida organisms. Birds with yeast infections may experience regurgitation, weight loss, diarrhea, and decreased appetite.
- Reproductive Problems: Reproductive issues are more common in cockatiels than in other bird species. Even individually housed pets can experience reproductive problems.
These health concerns may manifest as weight loss, swollen eyes, vomiting, respiratory problems, fatty tumors, a droopy head, abnormal feathers, or lumps on the body.
Birds showing signs of illness like reduced appetite, increased sleep, diminished vocalizations, or a fluffed-up appearance should be promptly examined by a veterinarian. Remember that regular vet check-ups and a balanced diet play crucial roles in preventing many of these health issues.
Ashenfallow Cockatiel Lifespan
The Ashenfellow Cockatiel is a type of cockatiel, and like other cockatiels, its lifespan can vary depending on whether it is in the wild or in captivity. In the wild, cockatiels have an average lifespan of 10 to 15 years.
However, in captivity, they can live much longer, with some living up to 36 years. A well-cared-for cockatiel can live for more than 20 years. The lifespan of a cockatiel can be affected by various factors such as diet, socialization, and the quality of air in the home.
Therefore, it is important to provide proper care and attention to ensure that a pet cockatiel lives a long and healthy life.
Are Ashenfallow Cockatiels good for first-time bird owners?
In my experience, Ashenfallow Cockatiels can make excellent pets for individuals new to bird ownership due to their gentle and affectionate disposition. They are relatively straightforward to look after and are considered an ideal choice for beginners in the world of pet birds.
Ashenfallow Cockatiels can develop strong bonds with their human companions, fostering a rewarding companionship. Their playful and curious nature adds to their charm, and they are also known for their talent for whistling tunes, which can provide delightful entertainment for their owners.
Ashenfallow Cockatiel for Sale and Price
Ashenfallow cockatiels are a rare mutation and can be quite challenging to come by. I conducted an online search for breeders who specialize in raising and selling Ashenfallow cockatiels and came across handtamedparrots.com. They have Ashenfallow cockatiels available for purchase, priced at $300.
If you have an interest in acquiring an Ashenfallow cockatiel, you can reach out to handtamedparrots for more information.
Ali Shahid is a veterinarian by profession and an animal lover. He loves to give expert opinions about different animals. He has worked in top organization of birds like Bigbird Feed and Poultry Research institute. He loves birds, especially parrots and has great experience in different parrot farms.