BIRDS Umbrella Cockatoo (White Cockatoo): Facts, Pictures, Care & FAQs

What Is an Umbrella Cockatoo?

Umbrella cockatoo bird standing on the basket

An umbrella cockatoo is a species of talking cockatoo bird for sale, one of the 21 parrot families existing in the world today. They are also known as the white cockatoo or the great white-crested cockatoo. Despite being found in the wild, these white parrots make wonderful pets due to their affectionate nature. Umbrella cockatoos are well-admired for their gentle behavior and intelligence. They can easily learn tricks and imitate human speech.

Like other cockatoos, they expand their crest or head feathers as a defense mechanism or just to impress other birds, especially females. According to BirdLife International, the conservation status of Cacatua alba, the scientific name for white cockatoos, is categorized as vulnerable. This was a result of the booming cage bird trade in the 1990s. As of today, conservation efforts are being made to prevent them from becoming endangered species.

Umbrella Cockatoo History and Origin: Where Do White Cockatoos Come From?

The tropical rainforest of Indonesia is home to most umbrella cockatoos. Their species occur naturally in the northern and central islands of Malaku, also known as the Moluccan islands. Over time, they migrated and became widespread across the archipelago. From the tree canopy of rainforests, they found sanctuary in swamps, mangroves, and open woodland.

Even though they thrive well in the wet climate of the forest, they eventually sought the abundance of food near the rivers and farmlands.  Since they frequently pick on vegetation and harvests, they are considered crop pests by many farmers. Some even speculated that they were just escaped pets. Sadly, due to the continuous destruction of their natural habitat, white cockatoos are considered vulnerable. They are included in the Convention on International Trade in Endangered Species of Wild Fauna and Flora (CITES) appendix of protected species. This makes the trading of wild-caught birds, such as all cockatoo species, illegal.

Umbrella Cockatoo Appearance: What Does an Umbrella Cockatoo Look Like?

White parrot umbrella cockatoo appearance

Talking Umbrella cockatoos for sale  are easily distinguishable because of their color and markings. They have a pure white body with a distinct yellow coloration on their tail feathers and underside of the wings. They are also one of the parrot species that can raise their crest like an umbrella, thus their name. The crest is a bunch of long feathers that sit atop their head and raise when there is a perceived threat or even when they get excited or playful. The beak and legs of these cockatoos are dark gray. Males usually have a dark brown iris and generally have larger heads and beaks.

Females, on the other hand, develop a reddish iris as they mature instead of dark brown eyes. Umbrella cockatoos for sale are sometimes mistaken with the Moluccan cockatoo due to their similarity in appearance. However, upon close inspection, you will observe that Moluccan cockatoos have a pale yellow to peach-colored underwing. Comparing their crests, Moluccans also have bright red-orange plumes instead of plain white feathers.

Umbrella Cockatoo Size and Weight: Are Cockatoos Large Birds?

Considered as large parrots for sale , umbrella cockatoos can grow between 17 and 18 inches in height and weigh around 1 to 2.5 pounds. When in flight, their wingspan is measured to be approximately 22 inches. They are large and graceful birds that are considered a couple of inches smaller than their Moluccan cockatoo cousins. These birds measure around 18 to 20 inches tall.

In the wild, the large size of the white cockatoo is a great advantage. They are less likely to be preyed on because of the added intimidation factor. Their huge wingspan also allows them to fly long distances easily to hunt for food and reach large trees.

Umbrella Cockatoo Speech and Sounds: How Do White Cockatoos Vocalize?

Compared to other parrots, white cockatoos are the least capable of reproducing human speech accurately. However, you can expect them to have loud vocalizations as pet birds. They emit a grating screech or different noises to communicate, express their anger, or demand attention from their owners. The ability of a white cockatoo to talk depends on the training they received at a young age. They can learn about 50 words or short phrases on average but their accuracy at imitating sounds is not as good as other species.

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