How to care for a pet cockatoo
All parrots should be fed a diet of primarily pellets, such as Zupreem, Rowdybush, Harrisons, etc., supplemented by fresh food.
They should always have fresh water, and their cages should be lined with papers that are replaced regularly.
Cockatoos enjoy regular time outside of their cages interacting with owners, and as they are intelligent (like all parrots), they need plenty of toys to keep them busy. A good rule of thumb is, "A busy bird is a happy bird!"
When you bring home your first cockatoo, be sure to find an avian veterinarian -- one who specialises in birds -- to bring your new friend to. It is important to schedule a well-bird exam to ensure that your cockatoo in good health.
Any future birds you bring home should spend approximately 45 days in quarantine from the bird(s) already in your home. This is to prevent the spread of disease.
Do not cage incompatible types of birs together. For example Cockatiels are so docile that they can easily be hurt by other, more aggressive birds -- even smaller ones, like Budgerigars and parrotlets.
In general, your best bet for a healthy and friendly bird is to buy one from a breeder.
Never give a pet parrot chocolate, caffeinated beverages, alcohol, avocado, or rhubarb.
Avoid using PFTEs (often referred to by the brand name of Teflon) around all pet birds. When PFTEs/ Teflons get very hot, they emit particulates into the air. Birds are more sensitive to particulates than humans are, and they can die suddenly when exposed to PFTE. PFTEs are found in cookware, hair dryers, irons, printers, and more -- check all labels before using electric products near your birds.
Also avoid using candles, air fresheners, etc. near birds.
Although cockatiels are capable of reproducing by the time they are a year old, they should be prevented from doing so until they are at least two years old. This is especially important for female cockatiels: Laying eggs requires much calcium, and when a hen lays eggs at too young an age, the egg-laying can interfere with the calcium required by her bones.
To learn more:
A great place to learn more about Cockatiels is Tiel Talk, a Cockatiel bulletin board where tiel owners share tips on raising, taming, breeding, and caring for their fids ("feathered kids").
You can see pictures of Cockatiels at numerous sites, including bittybirds.com.