The Bare Eyed Cockatoo

Bare-Eyed Cockatoos are fun and independent friends

Bare Eyed Cockatoo

Bare-Eyed Cockatoo

The Bare Eyed Cockatoo is often overlooked because of its appearance, but this fascinating species is fun, comical, and more independent than some other Cockatoo species.

They are content to play on their own and are less likely to become overly demanding than some of the other Cockatoos, but they still require a lot of time and attention. If not given the right amount of attention, they can still become screamers and feather pluckers. For this reason, they are best for experienced bird owners.

STOP! Before you Buy a Cockatoo – READ THIS SITE!

Bare Eyed Cockatoos are known for being fun, clownish, goofy, and all-around entertaining. They are very friendly and make great family pets. They are also one of the better talkers of the Cockatoos and also tend to be more talented as well.

To read more about Cockatoos as pets, please visit our Cockatoo page.

Even though Bare Eyeds are more independent, all Cockatoos require a lot of time and attention–much more than any other pet bird. If you are able to spend at least two full hours a day with your bird (out of his cage), not leave the house for 6 or more hours everyday, cook for your bird and provide him with a variety of healthy foods, handle the loud screaming, afford the large cage and huge amount of toys, and deal with the adjustment stage that can include aggression, then rescuing a Cockatoo might be a great idea. Make sure you research as much as possible because you don’t want to add to the already out-of-hand rescue problem.

Because so many Cockatoos are left to rescues, I highly encourage you to visit your local parrot rescue, see what I’m talking about, and consider rescuing one of these magestic creatures instead of buying one in a store. If you can handle all this, then this really might be the right bird for you.

Fast Facts

Name Bare Eyed Cockatoo (Cacatua sanguinea), Little Corellas, Short-Billed Corellas
Origin Eastern and Northern Australia
Size 15 in.
Color Differences Bare Eyeds are often confused with the Goffin’s Cockatoo. The notable differences between the two are that Bare Eyeds are slightly larger and have a large blue ring of bare skin around their eyes.
Average Cost $1000
Lifespan 40-60 years
Noise Can be loud–Bare Eyed Cockatoos are less likely to scream than some of the other species of Cockatoos (particularly the larger ones) because they are more independent and can play on their own. However, they can become screamers if not given a good amount of attention.
Living Arrangements Because they can be very loud, they are best suited for living in a house.
Qualities Fun, goofy, lots of personality, clownish, playful, interactive, affectionate, great family pet, curious, comical, one of the best talkers of the Cockatoo species, cuddly, less likely to become overly demanding than other Cockatoo species, but still prone to behavior problems.
Abilities Good–Bare Eyed Cockatoos are said to be one of the better talkers of the Cockatoos and they are also trainable.
Interaction/Time Requirements High–They love their owners and always want attention. While Bare Eyeds are more independent than some of the other species, you still need to be prepared to spend at least 2 hours a day with him to give him the time and attention he needs.
Diet They need a large parrot diet.
Supplies Needed They need supplies for large parrots.
See How Bare Eyed Cockatoos Compare to Other Types of Pet Birds!

Bare-Eyed Cockatoo Videos

“Frostie The Cockatoo Dancing To Shake Your Tail Feather! Bird Loves Ray Charles!”

This is by far my favorite Cockatoo video. This video shows just how much personality (and talent!) these birds can have!

“Roxie the Bare-Eyed Cockatoo Talking”

This is a great video that shows how good Bare Eyeds are with kids and also gives you a small taste of what their adorable little voices sound like!

“Sanctuary Takes Birds Owners Can’t Care For (WCCO-TV CBS)”

Many pet birds are landing in bird rescues all over the country. Cockatoos are very needy and many owners don’t realize how much it takes in order to keep their Cockatoo healthy, happy, and screaming/plucking/illness free. It truly takes a lot. This is a great video of a news story covering the common heartbreaking story of birds being given up by their owners. Or worse, birds being neglected by their owners and not receiving the love and care they so desperately need.

See More Cockatoo Videos on our Cockatoo Video Page >

Bare Eyed Cockatoo Training

Because Cockatoos are such needy parrots, they can quickly become screamers and feather pluckers. Even if you spend a few hours with your Cockatoo every day, he may scream every minute you’re not around.

For this reason, we highly recommend that you find an effective training program. Whether your parrot is new to your home or you’ve had him for years, a training program will always come in handy. We personally recommend the Bird Tricks Parrot Training Course by Dave and Jamieleigh Womach. You can see many of their videos for free to get an idea of how much they know about parrots and how they can help you train yours.

Below is one of Dave’s videos about stopping your Cockatoo’s screaming. Cockatoos tend to scream even if you spend plenty of time with them. This video is a great example of how effective the training courses are and how they are filled with a wealth of useful information for any bird owner.

This video is only the first step in stopping your Cockatoo from screaming. We highly recommend checking out the BirdTricks Training Course for training your parrot even further.

For more information about Dave and Jamieleigh’s courses, you can visit the Bird Tricks website HERE.

Cockatoo Education

To learn more about your pet Cockatoo, we recommend these books:

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Cockatoo Gifts

Have a friend of family member who loves Cockatoos? Gift them something that will truly spark joy!

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Have A Great Story About Your Bare Eyed Cockatoo?

Share your experience with others! There’s no better way to learn about a pet bird than from an owner.

Some helpful information for potential owners can be: What is the species of your bird? Is he/she friendly? Loving? Cuddly? Talented? Messy? Loud? You get the idea!

Your comment may just help someone decide whether or not this pet bird is for them.

6 replies
  1. Cayla
    Cayla says:

    My Bare-Eyed is a rescue named Elvis. He used to live with my neighbors, and when I would go to their house to play with their daughter, I would always change his water and give him fresh food. Every once in a while, I’d talk her into cleaning his cage with me. But other than me, no one took care of him. It got to the point where he would fly to me every time I came in the house. My neighbors were adamant about keeping him even though they didn’t take care of him because he wasn’t cheap. One day, he bit his owner really hard, and she called me and said I could buy him if I wanted, and I did. Well, he’s been living with me for almost five years now, but he goes through phases where he’s really sweet and then really aggressive. It’s hard to keep up with his mood swings. He also doesn’t play with his toys. I’ve spent so much money on toys and perches and swings, but he’s too skittish to play with anything new. He doesn’t scream unless he’s hungry, and he doesn’t pluck his feathers, but I’m worried that he’s bored and neglected (no one can get near him when he’s aggressive). Even when he’s moody I try to sit right next to his cage and talk to him so he’s getting attention, but he doesn’t seem to need it. Does anyone have any experience with this kind of thing? I just want him to have the best life possible.

    • Jennifer Hebert
      Jennifer Hebert says:

      My bare eyed cockatoo is the same as yours
      I find it helpful to sit near her cage and read or listen to music and dance or be silly, sometimes pretending I don’t see her lunging at the bars wanting to bite me. I only react when she responds in a good way.

  2. Anonymous
    Anonymous says:

    My Cuddly Rescue Cockatoo
    bare eyed cockatoo
    Kaitie after three years with me.
    I was gifted the chance to own a beautiful Bare-Eyed cockatoo (after months of thought) when I was a young teenager; I have had birds all my life and had a great deal of experience with birds by then but I wasn’t an experienced parrot owner. I did a lot of research when I was presented the opportunity to adopt a rescue Bare-Eyed cockatoo, age 4. She originally lived in a crowded home inside of a dog create with another cockatoo. She was not exposed to any other humans besides her original owner (a woman). Her hearing was slightly damaged due to her proximity to other large birds who constantly screamed for attention, and she still has trouble talking. She had been rescued and was living in a home where the owner felt there wasn’t enough space. After adopting her, I spent months just trying to get close to her. It took a long time for her to warm up to me, and I considered selling her, but one night as I was giving her some banana (she loves banana), she gave me the most human-like look of gratitude. Bare-Eyed cockatoos have exposed rings of skin around her eyes, and it really gives them a unique, genuine ability to have literal facial expressions. From then on, I knew I had to keep her.

    It took about 6-8 months for her to warm up and sit on my hand/arm (my hands are rather small, and she finds my fingers inadequate for long-term perching, she prefers my wrist). Her name when I adopted her was Kaitie, and I have not changed it because I feel that it would just be wrong. Now, we have cuddle sessions almost every night, and she is notorious for acting like a cat in the sense that she sprawls all over me and my books when I’m laying down to read. She loves to be pet and to sit as close to my fave as possible when allowed. She dances with my family, and has learned to crow like my neighbors rooster at 6 a.m. (I was rarely late for school as a teenager). She is the most precious thing I have ever raised. She is a very docile bird, and full of personality. I do want to stress that she is quite needy just like a toddler. However, I’ve noticed that she is relatively quiet for a large bird. Given her past, she is also relatively open to having her cage surrounded by strangers. She likes to play and explore on her own (she likes the floor, but not as much as some ‘toos). One of the sweetest things she does is lay her head in my hand and rub her head on my palm. She has tons of personality, favorite foods, things that make her sick, and music she loves. Bare-Eyed cockatoos are not really loud birds often, but they are LOUD birds.

    Kaitie will scream at things she doesn’t like, as well as when she is happy. A frightened scream from a cockatoo is the ugliest and most blood-curdling sound you’ll ever hear as a cockatoo owner. It may be enough to have the threat of eviction hanging over your head if your cockatoo screams too often and you live in an apartment. She does not like small children, as is the case with many cockatoos, and she doesn’t like men (her past contributes to this, but this is a case by case basis).

    By far the most challenging part of having a Bare-Eyed cockatoo is the diet. With large birds, the toys can be expensive but replaceable and substituted (Kaitie enjoys ripping boxes, phone books, and cardboard rolls as much as she loves playing with her “real” toys), but there can be no shortcuts in the diet. Every bird will reject a healthy food every once in a while, and it takes dedication to get them to eat what’s healthy if they haven’t had it before. I recommend heavy research in this area because the beak-size of the Bare-Eyed cannot accommodate some very large, hard nuts and foods, but they require a large parrot diet.

    After all has been said and done, I wouldn’t have her any other way.

    • Jamie
      Jamie says:

      I absolutely loved reading this story. Hope all worked out for you and your beautiful bird. So nice to hear a younger person stick with it and not give up to provide a good home for an animal who needed one.



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