Cockatoos

Cacatuidae

Eleven of Australia’s 14 species are endemic, with the others shared with New Guinea. Medium to large crested birds, except the Cockatiel Nymphicus hollandicus is more slender and parrot-like, with two toes facing forwards and two facing rearwards (zygodactylous). Many form noisy flocks, which can consist of several hundred individuals in some species.

Carnaby's Black-Cockatoo

Carnaby's Black-Cockatoo

What does it look like?  Also known as the Short-billed Black-Cockatoo, the Carnaby’s Black-Cockatoo is easily confused with the Baudin’s (or Long-billed) Black-Cockatoo Zanda baudinii , which has a longer upper mandible, although this can often be partially obscured by feathers. Both are large black cockatoos with a white cheek patch and white panels in the tail. The male of both species has a pi...
Cockatiel

Cockatiel

What does it look like?  The Cockatiel, or Quarrion as it is popularly called, is actually a cockatoo, although its slender body and long pointed tail is more characteristic to that of a parrot. Where does it live?  It is widespread throughout mainland Australia, but large numbers are found in the more arid inland areas. What are its habitats and habits?   It feeds on a variety of grass seeds, nu...
Gang-gang Cockatoo

Gang-gang Cockatoo

What does it look and sound like?  The Gang-gang Cockatoo can be identified by its general grey plumage, each feather edged with greyish-white, and its short, square tail. The male has a conspicuous red, curly crest. The common call is a prolonged creaky screech.  Where does it live?  Found throughout south-eastern mainland Australia and northern Tasmania, being common in certain areas, but le...
Major Mitchell's Cockatoo

Major Mitchell's Cockatoo

  What does it look like?  This is a beautiful salmon-pink and white cockatoo. When the crest is erected it reveals a dark pink-red colouration with a broad yellow band running through the centre. In flight, the dark pink of the under-wings is clear visible. Where does it live?  It is found in the arid and semi-arid areas of inland Australia. What are its habitats and habits?  It feeds on a v...
Red-tailed Black-Cockatoo

Red-tailed Black-Cockatoo

  What does it look like?  This is a large, black cockatoo. The male is easily identified by its dense crest of black feathers, almost entirely black plumage, and bright red undertail. The female is duller grey-brown, barred and spotted with yellow, and has a diagnostic white bill. The Glossy Black-Cockatoo Calyptorhynchus lathami  of south-east Australia and Kangaroo Island, SA, has a paler he...
Sulphur-crested Cockatoo

Sulphur-crested Cockatoo

What does it look and sound like?  The white plumage, black bill and distinctive sulphur-yellow crest of the common and familiar Sulphur-crested Cockatoo distinguish it from all other cockatoos found in Australia.  It is a noisy and conspicuous cockatoo, both at rest and in flight, there have also been instances where people have heard a Sulphur-crested Cockatoo say a human word or phrase. The most c...
Yellow-tailed Black-Cockatoo

Yellow-tailed Black-Cockatoo

What does it look and sound like?   This cockatoo is easily identified by its predominantly black plumage, the feathers of the body edged with yellow, and its yellow cheek patch and yellow panels on the underside of the tail. (The Carnaby’s, or Short-billed, Black-Cockatoo, found in south-western Western Australia and having white tail panels instead of yellow, was formerly considered a subspecies of...