Do Cockatoos Talk & Scream ? 11 Facts You Should Know

The Cockatoo is a decent white feathered bird with a lovely golden crest on its head. They are generally very intelligent species. Now let us know more about their talking ability.

Cockatoos do not have an excellent skills for talking but they usually scream a lot. They have a huge vocabulary and also have the ability to memorize human commands. They use to scream a lot to get some attention.

The screaming is a routine work of a cockatoo in the morning and evening. A common cockatoo can remember 20 to 30 English words and try to implement these words at the right time. Babbling is common for a cockatoo which is the continuous flow of sounds but does not have any proper relevance to a proper meaningful sentence.

Do cockatoos understand human language

Cockatoos have the capability to interact with humans. Can they understand the human language? Let us know briefly about this.

A cockatoo does not have the ability to understand human language. They can mimic human activity while talking and if an owner can train a cockatoo properly with normal greetings like “Good Morning” and “Good Evening”, they can easily implicate this.

A properly trained cockatoo can speak words for which they are trained. They gradually get accustomed to their owners and begin to identify their voices.

Image Credit: Galah Cockatoo by Bjoertvedt licensed under CC BY-SA 4.0

Do all cockatoos talk

All cockatoos do not talk. Screaming is universal for all the cockatoos’ species. A citron-crested cockatoo is the quietest and a Sulphur-crested cockatoo is the best talker among all species.

What age do cockatoos start talking

Some of the cockatoos species are especially known for their talking activity. Now let us know at what age they start to talk.

Cockatoos generally start to talk when they are 2 to 3 months old. Some of them also start to talk after one year of age. It totally depends on how an owner interacts with them and how well the owner can train a cockatoo to talk. A cockatoo is mostly good at mimicking and acquires this ability at the time of birth.

There is no proper timeline for when a cockatoo will start to talk. Every cockatoo is different and this totally depends upon how good their intelligence level is. It can also take two to three years for a cockatoo to start talking, which is not wise and perceptive enough.

Image Credit: Sulphur-crested Cockatoo by Tony Hisgett licensed under CC BY 2.0

Do cockatoos scream

Cockatoos are able to scream and use this ability to communicate within their group of members. They also can scream when they try to get some attention of their owners. A loud mournfully willing call often can be heard when they are in flight and make a softer scream while feeding.

Why do cockatoos scream

Cockatoos generally scream when they feel bored and lonely. By screaming they want to gather some sort of attention towards them. They also scream when they can sense fear around them and when they are looking for their potential mate. They also scream when they are sick or in some pain.

A trained cockatoo also can scream in the morning and evening on a daily basis.

How long do cockatoos scream for

Cockatoos generally scream continuously for a maximum period of 10 to 15 minutes. Once the cockatoo is silent for more than 5 seconds the owner has to interact with them and also should have to offer them treats for their good behavior.

This process lowers the probability of screaming unnecessarily and also helps to build a decent character of the particular cockatoo.

Image Credit: Goffins Cockatoo in flight by Marah09013 licensed under CC BY-SA 3.0

How loud can a cockatoo scream?

Every cockatoo has the ability to scream. Some of them are loud and some of them are quiet. Now let us know the range of their screaming loudness.

A cockatoo can scream from 120 decibels up to 135 decibels. It will appear like an ear-splitting sound to humans. Moluccan Cockatoos are generally the loudest cockatoo species. They are not this much of noisy when they get a free space and an enriched environment for their living.

Why do cockatoos scream at night

Cockatoos scream at night to communicate with their group members. They also practice a screaming session every night after returning to their nests.

Do umbrella cockatoos talk

An umbrella cockatoo is typically known for their semicircular head crest. They can extend this when they are surprised. Now let us know if they are able to talk or not.

Umbrella cockatoos are not talkative enough but can be trained to talk. They can memorize more English words than any other cockatoo. They are typically known for learning some new tricks.

Image Credit: Umbrella Cockatoo by DickDaniels licensed under CC BY-SA 3.0

Do galah cockatoos talk

Galah cockatoos are good talkers. They are good at mimicking human voice and also can mimic accurately some sort of sounds like telephone ringtones, car horns, and train whistles. The male galah cockatoos are more creative talkers than the female breed. They are not loud enough like the other cockatoos’ species.

Do goffin cockatoos talk

A Goffin cockatoo is a friendly species among all cockatoos. They can unlock the cage door after seeing the unlocking process by the owner. Let us know about their talking skills.

A Goffin cockatoo is not a good talker. They can scream but also not at a louder pitch. They are quite a good learners and an owner can teach them to say some short phrases. Training a Goffin cockatoo to talk is a very hard and lengthy process.


The key takeout of this article is that the screaming ability is common in the case of all cockatoos. Cockatoos are smart and intelligent enough and they are generally good learners. An owner can train a cockatoo well and teach the bird to talk and mimic some sort of human said phrases.

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