Will My Cockatiel Fly Back Home? (+What To Do?)

Losing a cockatiel is one of the most worrying experiences that you’ll endure. Nobody likes the idea of their pet being lost and alone. Unfortunately, sometimes cockatiels can be master escapologists. The curious nature of a cockatiel sometimes results in unsanctioned explorations outside of the home.

An escaped cockatiel will not necessarily return back. They often tend to confuse direction and path towards home due to anxiety, disorientation and curiosity. Therfore, it would be best if you started the search campaign as soon as possible.

Never assume that your cockatiel will find her own way home. The longer a cockatiel; is missing, the more danger she finds herself in. Do not assume that your lost cockatiel is enjoying its freedom, either. Domesticated birds face a lot of difficulties adjusting in the wild.

If you are lucky, just leaving their cage door open might be enough to entice a lost cockatiel back home. In the meantime, follow these tips to help you find a lost cockatiel.

What Do I Do If My Cockatiel Flies Away?

It can be really daunting to find a cockatiel that has escaped. However, with quick action and smart techniques, you will surely be able to recover your lost bird.

Remember that the first 24 hours are extremely crucial to find a lost cockatiel since he cannot fly far away in such a short period.

  1. You can start by looking for your cockatiel while calling out his name or making his favorite noise such as whistling.
  2. On the search process, always carry your cockatiel’s travel cage with his favorite treat kept inside to safely bring him back home.
  3. You can also try playing the recorded voice of a cockatiel on your phone while searching for the lost one will help call him back. Your cockatiel will be familiar with these sounds and might be drawn towards it.
  4. A great idea would be searching your cockatiel around the nearby trees when the sun is setting will increase your chances of finding him out. Birds tend to settle down on trees when the night approaches.
  5. If your cockatiel has a partner, taking it along while recovering a lost bird will increase the chances of finding the lost bird.
  6. You can also choose to engage the neighbors by creating flyers and giving other physical details that could help recognize the parrot. However, never reveal the leg band number of your cockatiel to anyone as the ‘Finders-Keepers’ kind of people might erase such proofs to have a tamed bird by themselves.
  7. Contact all the vets, bird clubs, bird stores, police stations, radio/television shows, or any such parrot forum in your vicinity to spread the word about the missing bird. To ensure that the efforts reap a positive result, offer a reward for anybody finding your cockatiel.
  8. You can also contacting the wildlife rescue organizations in your area might also help.
  9. Posting an online advertisement on specialized forums like Parrot Alert will spread the word further. If someone has rescued your pet cockatiel, he might look for an advert online to find you. Therefore, an online posting on several such websites as well as bird groups on Facebook can be useful as well.

What Are The Chances Of Finding A Cockatiel?

Unfortunately, not all lost cockatiels make it home, but over 50% are reunited with their pet parents.

From a recent study, most lost cockatiels find their way home in the first week. The number grows after around 1-2 months of going missing.

As time passes, the chances for successful recovery decrease, but don’t give up! Some cockatiels have been reunited with their parents after months.

How Far Can A Cockatiel Fly In One Day?

A healthy cockatiel can fly about 30 miles each day. The speeds and distances also depend on the species, prevailing winds, and air temperature.

However, most of the time, a domesticated cockatiel does not fly much far in a day.

How To Catch A Cockatiel Outside?

You need to start by spotting your escaped cockatiel.

In general, an escaped cockatiel is likely to go is to the top of the outdoor cage, or to a nearby tree. If he’s simply nipped through an open window and there is no outdoor cage, he’ll head for your roof/gutter or a high tree/fence.

Once your cockatiel is in front of your eyes, try to lure it with its favorite treat. My cockatiel personally loves to eat millet.

If you do so, there are chances that your bird will come to your finger. If the same thing has happened, gently bring your other hand close and take hold of him to prevent further problems.

If this process has not worked for you, there are a few more ways to get an escaped cockatiel.

Start by placing your cockatiel’s cage somewhere high, and in clear view of your escaped bird or his last known whereabouts, with the cage doors open. Then, attach some tempting food to the inside bars.

If your cockatiel is used to perching on you, stand with its favourite treat in your hand and call him. If you have more than one bird (and more than one cage), place his friends next to the open cage, and their calls will hopefully lure him back home.

If your cockatiel has escaped from an aviary, then you can’t just leave the doors open and tempt him in with food.

Place its favorite treat in a small cage on top of the aviary, or as close to it as possible. The sound of the other cockatiel will hopefully tempt him back soon enough, at which point you will need to net him.

My Cockatiel Escaped. Will It Survive?

If your domesticated cockatiel has escaped, it has only a slight chance of surviving the wild.

Domesticated cockatiels, or any other bird, cannot fly as high as their wild counterparts. Predatory birds such as hawks or owls can indeed attack it.

In addition, pet cockatiel is not trained to feed themselves in the wild. They might have to face difficulty in finding food and water for themselves.

Furthermore, pet cockatiels are used to the love and care of their human companions. Lack of care and love often leads to depression in cockatiels.

With the following points being discussed, a pet cockatiel’s survival in the wild cannot be ruled out completely.

If your cockatiel is not too young, then there are chances that it might find out ways to survive in the wild. Furthermore, the chances increase if your cockatiel is more intelligent too.

Related Queries:

How Far Can A Cockatiel Fly With Clipped Wings?

A bird with clipped wings will not be able to fly like before.

A cockatiel with clipped wings will just flutter a couple of feet into the air. Once the wings are clips, the muscles of our birds become too weak to fly normally.

Therefore, a cockatiel with clipped wings will not be able to fly any more than a mile or two.

How Long Can A Cockatiel Survive Without Food?

Cockatiels can survive for about 24-48 hours without eating. However, the longer a cockatiel goes without proper nutrition, the weaker it becomes.

In addition, the same is not the case for a domestic cockatiel. Domestic or pet cockatiels often become accustomed to being fed at certain times, and if this doesn’t happen, they can become malnourished and unwell in no time.

How Long Can A Cockatiel Survive Without Water?

Cockatiels cannot go longer than 24 hours without drinking. If the weather is particularly hot, this period is even shorter. It cannot be stressed enough how important water is for your birds.

Healthy cockatiels might be able to go 24 hours without drinking, but they will likely develop other side effects by this point, such as dehydration or organ failures.


Hello, I am Mohini, the founder of this blog. I am a qualified Animal Nutrition. I am here to help everyone understand their pets better.

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