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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Hi there

We have had our cockatiel for just over a year now and I have some questions. First of all, thank you so much for the tutorial on resizing and uploading photos. I just hope I can get it to work now;)

Echo is a year and a half or so. She is a very sweet bird. Super cuddly, when cranky a wee bit hissy, demanding, very very social,quite chatty for a period of time everyday but for the most part quite quiet and sweet. BUT, she likes to put her wings out and puff up her chest and strut!!! I could have sworn I was told that if she still had spots on her after a molt that she was in fact a she. After reading a little more into it on the internet I have learned that might not be the case because she is a not so common coloring. I will post some pics of her/him. I hope that someone can tell me what she is ex. pearl, pied. Any hints on sex would be great. I have read about DNA testing. Is it very accurate? Anywhere in Canada I could have this done? Thank you sooo much in advance for anything you can offer. Now for those photos, here goes....





 

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I'm no expert, so don't go 100% by what I say, but I think Echo is a girl. She looks just like my Daisy, who is a Pearl (apparently) and if Echo is over a year old, then she will have had her first big moult. A female will keep all her pearls after the big moult, whereas a male will lose his. When I got Daisy we had her DNA'd to make sure she is a she that cost £15 and it is 99.99% accurate, so yeah, it's worth it. I don't know what £15 is in CAD, but it's not that expensive.

Just a thought, when she puffs herself up and holds out her wings, could she be warm? That is also a cooling mechanism for tiels.

Now, I've written all that, I am far from an expert, so wait until one comes along before you convince yourself one way or another.
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
Thanks for your insight, Plukie:)

When she holds her wings out she is sleak, not really puffy and she talks in this really sexy type voice lol. She struts around our shoulders, back and forth looking up and talking, not saying anything, just this really soft chirping sound. The wings make a heart shape if you look from behind. She does this to hubby the most, it's pretty cute!
 

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If Echo is a year and a half she is a female she is not uncommon in colouring she looks like a Pearl to me, , male pearls will start to lose some pearls at about 6 months and from your pictures Echo has not lost any so definitely female, the soft chirping and displaying for your husband is quite common females will do that when they find there mate...lol My Georgie also does this and she mostly does it for my husband who she loves I swear sometimes she thinks he is her mate :p

There is a place in Toronto Ontario that does avian dna http://healthgene.com/Avian/ there quite good but with Echo you really don't need to as you can visually tell what she is so why waste your money :p
 

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Discussion Starter · #7 ·
Thanks! She does seem so much like a girl to me, very sweet is the best way to describe her. Maybe I am just lucky to have a girl who loves to chatter. Time will tell me I suppose.
 

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If she is a single female she could be more prone to chattering, my female Minnie during Quarantine and the early days when she was by herself surprised us we were sure we had a male because she was a little chatter box she made many sounds a male makes and she wolf whistles like a male but now that she is with Lee she makes less noise and lets him take over.
 

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The struting you're describing sounds very much like heart wings, which i thought was a male-only tiel behaviour!! You've certainly got a mystery on your hands there! :p I know that some male tiels will keep their pearling, but they also get the yellow face and lose at least some of the spots, which your lady doesn't seem to have done. Very odd indeed!!!
 

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Discussion Starter · #14 ·
Yes, growing up we always had cockatiels and I thought it was a male behavoir as well. Everywhere I read on the internet supports that. I am going to go ahead with DNA feather testing. I know they can be false from time to time but from all I have read they are pretty accurate.
 

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Some male pearls do keep their pearling into maturity but it is rare. Some hens will display as you have described. This might give you a clue. When she displays for your Husband does she tend to lean forward? Almost making herself horizontal? A little scratch on the head would prompt this behavior. This would be a hen assuming the position.
 

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Discussion Starter · #17 ·
She does seem rather horizontal when she does this to him. Almost making herself seem like a tiny sexy birdy lol
 

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You said that when she holds her wings out she has a soft chirp. that sounds female. Although it IS rare for a male pearl to keep it's pearling (Her's the rub) It does happen. Do you have any friends with a male? One interesting test would be to have them bring their bird over and see how she reacts. If he is obviously louder than her and tends to stand with his legs closer together it might help you get some perspective. The bottom line is however She is much more likely a hen (statistically). Also I just noticed she has stripes on her tail feathers! That would make her a hen regardless of the fact that she is a pearl. At a year and a half and after a molt to still have those clinches it.
 
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