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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Hello everyone!

I've been an avid reader of these forums for months now, but I just made an account to be able to ask this question! Please let me know if this isn't the appropriate place to post this, I'll move it lickety split.

My cockatiel Rocket hatched on October 21st of 2018. I am beyond in love with him. When he was around two months old I had DNA run on him, and the results came back as him being male. From what I understand DNA is the most accurate method of sexing cockatiels, so I just took it in stride and went, 'ok, he's male'. His behaviour is certainly male; he is always very active, he constantly plays with every toy I cycle in and out for him, he's always flying around the house and tumbling all over me and he sings and vocalizes very frequently. He's a super outgoing little bird. I was also informed that barring on the tail feathers and spotting on the undersides of the wings indicates a female. I believe he's nearing the end of his moult considering he's growing in primary flight feathers and new tail feathers, but his tail feathers are just as barred as his juvenile feathers and his new flight feathers certainly have underside spotting just as prominent as the ones before them.

Is this a nutritional thing? I feed him a mix of a variety of zupreem's 'essential nutrition' pellets supplemented with a veggie salad every day. Can DNA results be wrong? Are there cases of male cockatiels retaining underwing spotting and tail barring after their first moults? He's a cinnamon cockatiel, I'm not sure if he's split with anything else. Would his colour mutation have anything to do with it? Is he simply still too young to tell yet? Attached below is a picture of him, if that helps.



Thank you very much for any responses! :cinnamon:
 

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Discussion Starter · #2 ·
I'm not sure if this helps at all, but here's an additional image of him from above. He came to us clipped, but I prefer my birds fully flighted so I'm leaving his flight feathers alone while they all grow in. Just so you know, the thing in his mouth is a piece from a wicker ball off one of his toys!

These flight feathers are still growing in, but the wing spots are already clear on them even from above. Any word on this is super appreciated, I love him more than anything and I really just want to make sure he's healthy! He had his last vet checkup in early February and he had a clean bill of health then.

 

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I am new. Here is my two cents, Based on cheek patches with bright yellow spot instead of grey spots, I would say he is he.

The barring on the tail only refers to the most outside ones if he opens the tail. For you case, these would be the yellow ones. Is there barring one these two?

I can't help much about nutrition. I would added hard boiled egg to their food menu during molting reason to provide enough proteins. My two young ones love hard boiled egg. I hand feed eggs to them as treat. It is great entertainment for birds and human.

BTW, your boy is very cute!
 

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Discussion Starter · #4 ·
Thank you very much for the response!

I had no idea that the barring only meant the outer two feathers. He's still growing them in, but currently they go a little less than halfway down his tail and I can't see any barring. I do know that they were striped before he moulted them, so the solid colour now makes sense. As far as I can tell they're solid yellow.

I do give him some of the egg whites whenever I've hard boiled an egg these past few weeks while he moults, but I was worried about how much would be too much since he chews on his cuttlebone so liberally. I've been doing it about once a week for him, is that alright? Would more help or hurt?

Thank you! He's my little baby. He really is super cute. :cinnamon:
 

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I have no idea how much egg is too much. My two share 1/8 of eggs each day including white and yolk. I break the hard boiled eggs into very small pieces and hand feed them. My two love yolk more than white, so I will let me finish egg white first before given them yolk. I find if I put eggs in food bowl, most of them are wasted, so hand feed them withou less wast and I can control who eat how much.
 

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‘He’ looks very much like a female to me. The tail barring is very prominent and there are lots of wing spots, and males will usually have a bright yellow face while Rocket has a light greyish face and cheek patches. I think Rocket is a cinnamon mutation. Have you ever noticed any of the classic male behaviors such as heart wings, strutting in front of a mirror, beak banging, or whistling? It’s possible that the DNA test was inaccurate for some reason. It’s rare, but I have heard of it happening.

As for feeding them eggs, I definitely wouldn’t do that every day. It’s more of an occasional treat for them - too much animal protein really isn’t good for them. In the wild, cockatiels and parrots in general very rarely eat animal foods. Pellets provide plenty of protein and they can get minerals such as calcium from greens, veggies, or cuttlebone. Eggs should be given no more than once a week, or maybe even less.
 

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He is a cinnamon mutation yes. Moulting into the male coloration can take some time. Males do not get their male color until after 6 months to a year after they hatch. Before that, all chicks will look female regardless of sex.
 

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Discussion Starter · #10 ·
Thank you so much again for your responses, I really appreciate it.

TielLover04: That's what I thought, that he looks very much female. The outer feathers on his tail that are growing in are solid and not barred at all like Daytontiel mentioned, but all the others are very prominent, and his wing spots are massive. His behaviour is super male, though, and DNA came back male, so I'm confused on what sex he is. He does everything you described, he struts in front of every mirror he can find, he walks around with his wings out in a heart shape, he bangs his beak on the ground and he whistles and sings constantly, but then you see what he looks like. I understand that all juveniles look female and that he's still going through his first moult, but he's been losing and growing in more than enough feathers at this point for me to feel like there should have been some change to his appearance that I could see by now. It's difficult to tell in the pictures but his cheeks have yellow in them, not grey, but regardless of that he just has such prominent tail barring and wing spotting that I'm having a hard time with trying to place it coupled with his behaviour and the DNA test.


Darkel777/Daytontiel: I know he's a cinnamon, but when it comes to identifying any other mutations that could be mixed into that I'm totally lost. Pied doesn't seem far fetched at all though. The white strip to his wings is getting more yellow the more he loses feathers and grows in new ones, and the feathers all over his lower body overall are leaning more into yellow than the tan of a cinnamon. His face is also getting brighter. Would that say anything about him possibly being pied? All I know about pieds is that having elongated wing spots is one of the big indicators of it.
 
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