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Hi everyone,
It has been 6-7 years since the last time I had a budgie or any other pet.After that long break I decided to have a cockatiel to get a brand new experience after having budgies because I have read so many positive articles about their personality being so friendly and kind of similar to budgies overall.I intended to get a male cockatiel as young as possible but I had no experience whatsoever about them so here is my bird :


The petshop owner said it is definitely a "male" and it is around "6 months" old.Judging by some quick searches I believe it is a female because it has stripes on the tail and it is usually quiet.I also guess it is around 1 year old.These are just my predictions though.I have had it for 2 weeks, I finger tamed it and it seldom hisses at me and we seem to get along well so far.We even spent some time yesterday in my kid's play tent and it was quite calm resting on my finger/hand most of the time.Now I wonder its gender because I wonder why it is so quiet and if it can learn to sing some short easy whistle tunes and also how its gender can affect our taming process because of the sexual characteristics.Like will it let me scratch its head like my old budgies?
What is its gender and how old does it look?Any help would be much appreciated ...
 

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Congrats, it’s a boy! A breeder can probably explain better on how old he can be but he’s most likely 7 months or older, but less then two years. The one year old prediction could be right, I think it’s hard to tell at this point , other then the fact that he isn’t over two years old. Male tiels of the wild color (his coloring) get yellow faces during their first molt at 6-9 months of age. It could take up to two years to lose the tail barring as far as I know, but he will lose it. If you look at the photo in my signature you will see what a female looks like, no yellow face, with the wild coloring. If he was hand raised he will naturally be easier to tame. It sounds like you are well on your way. He may not be singing much yet because he is shy and still getting used to his new home. It takes them usually at least a month to start getting comfortable unless their really young, as three month old cockatiels are wired to explore, learn new things and crave some independence for a short while. Clicker training can strengthen the bond between you two, but just spending time with him without forcing/scaring him helps him realize your a friend and not a predator. Some birds don’t like to be pet on the head, some do. They have individual personalities, but they most likely aren’t going to let you pet them until they completely trust you. This level of trust takes a lot of time for some birds. When the bird follows you from room to room , that is a sign they are bonded to you. You can slowly teach him to accept some light touching with clicker training, and he might find out he enjoys it this way as well. Important thing in training is to go at their pace. I taught my tiel to accept wing touches, so I could teach her to spread her wings for a treat. She didn’t like to be touched on the wings, but I did this to desensitize her so things like being touched during vet visits are less stressful. I started slow, I would put my finger near her wing and click then treat. Eventually I was able to lightly touch her wing. If she moved away, I wouldn’t click or treat. But I didn’t chase her either. She caught on quickly that a wing touch = treat. Slowly after a few days I would touch the wing a little longer. After two weeks I was able to push her wings from her body ever so slightly. Her natural reaction was to move them out herself. Thus the trick was learned with a visual hand v shape queue I would do to move her wings out, then just bring my v shaped hand close to her wings, then further away. This is an example of trick training at the birds pace. You can do this for head and beak touching as well. I would suggest teaching target training and step up as they are the easiest tricks to train, building the birds confidence, and helping it understand the click means = action wanted for treat.

Please do add some shredding toys in his cage , natural or sisal rope perch instead of dowel, and feed him pellets ,veges /sprouts and seed. He is so handsome! He would also love having his own play area out of the cage as well. Here’s a photo of one of my play areas. Attached file.

Here is a video of my cage !
 

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