Are you planning on purchasing a pet cockatiel? Of course you’re aware that there will be initial expenses such as the cost of your new bird and a suitable cage.
However, many people forget that there will be recurring monthly expenses as well that must be planned for carefully for the health and well being of your new pet.
How much do cockatiels cost? Cockatiel prices typically range from $50-$300 on average, depending on the type of cockatiel you choose. Expect to pay around $100-$500 for a cage. Ongoing costs for food, toys, perches, insurance, and cleaning supplies will be approximately $60 per month.
|Food||$25 per month|
|Pet insurance||$10 per month|
|Cleaning supplies||$4 each|
Read on for a comprehensive list of every common type of cockatiel and its associated price as well as average prices for specific supplies you’ll need for your new pet cockatiel.
We’ll also answer some of the most commonly asked questions about cockatiels.
Cockatiel Average Prices: What to Expect
Once you’ve decided you want a cockatiel, you also want to choose which type of cockatiel you’d like.
Although the gray cockatiel is the cockatiel that is found in the wild, breeders have created several different mutations that alter the plumage of the bird.
The following list briefly describes each type of cockatiel, as well as its associated price, which is usually based on how rare that type of cockatiel is.
The prices are given as a range of average costs based on research from pet-finder websites.
The prices you pay for your cockatiel may not always be within this range.
Gray Cockatiel Price
The price for a gray cockatiel ranges from $50-$150.
Gray cockatiels are the most common kind of cockatiel as they are the cockatiel most seen in the wild. They are therefore some of the most affordable and widely available cockatiels to purchase.
Lutino Cockatiel Price
Lutino cockatiels can cost anywhere from $150-$200. Lutino cockatiels have a mutation that causes their feathers to be light yellow instead of gray.
Although this plumage comes from a mutation, it is the most common non-wild type cockatiel available, so its price is similar to that of the gray cockatiel.
Pearl Cockatiel Price
Pearl cockatiels cost about $150-$250.
The pearl cockatiel’s patterned feathering is a result of years of selective breeding by breeders of the original gray cockatiel as well as the lutino cockatiel.
Pearl cockatiels are nearly as common as the lutino cockatiels, so they have a similar price.
Yellow-Faced Cockatiel Price
The rare yellow-faced cockatiel goes for on average $150-$250.
The yellow-face mutation causes the normally orange cheek spots to turn a paler yellow.
Because yellow-faced cockatiels are rarer, they are harder to find. However, they are relatively affordable, as long as you can find a breeder who sells them.
White-Faced Cockatiel Price
The white-faced cockatiel typically costs around $200-$300.
The white-faced cockatiel is a gorgeous mutant that looks much different from any of the birds listed above as it has no yellow or orange coloring at all.
This cockatiel has a fully white head and gray plumage. This is one of the rarest cockatiel mutations, so they can be slightly more expensive than other types of cockatiels.
Pied Cockatiel Price
Pied cockatiels cost $110-$125 as they are relatively common.
The pied cockatiel is similar in appearance to the gray cockatiel, except it has blotches of gray and white across its back feathers.
This cockatiel was the first mutation to be established in the United States, so it has been around a while and is relatively common.
Dominant Silver Cockatiel Price
Dominant silver cockatiels cost around $75-$150.
Dominant Silver Cockatiels carry a dominant gene that gives these cockatiels a similar appearance to pearl cockatiels in that they have beautiful silvery feathers.
Cinnamon Cockatiel Price
Cinnamon cockatiels cost around $150-$250.
Cinnamon cockatiels have a recessive mutation that causes what would normally be gray feathers to be a warm brown tone. This is one of the more popular and sought-after mutations of cockatiels.
Fallow Cockatiel Price
The fallow cockatiel is not common and is not often sold, but if you can find one, it may be between $150 and $250.
Also known as the red-eyed silver cockatiel, this bird is one of the more recent mutations of cockatiels. Fallow cockatiels have light silvery feathers and red eyes.
Although they look striking, they may not be a great bird for a beginner cockatiel owner as they tend to have vision issues due to inbreeding.
Emerald Cockatiel Price
Emerald cockatiels cost between $75-$150.
The emerald cockatiel is a more recent mutation that is denoted not by bright green feathers, as the name would suggest, but more muted olive-toned or yellow feathers.
Some emerald cockatiels, however, have no green or yellow feathers at all and might be a dark gray.
Recessive Silver Cockatiel Price
Similarly to dominant, recessive silver cockatiels cost anywhere from $75-$150.
Recessive silver cockatiels may also have silvery feathers but can be a warmer brown tone. These cockatiels also have red eyes.
Recessive silver cockatiels are relatively common and have a similar price as their dominant counterparts.
Blue Cockatiel Price
The rare blue cockatiel costs between $100 and $300.
Blue cockatiels are a very rare mutation of cockatiel and are not considered a type of cockatiel. Rather, a “blue cockatiel” is any type of cockatiel that has blue coloring.
Since they are very rare, they tend to be more expensive than other cockatiels.
Cockatiel Setup Costs: What Prices To Expect
You’ll be spending anywhere from $75-$300 on your new cockatiel, but you’ll also need to consider the cost of items you need to care for him or her.
Purchasing your cockatiel is only one of many costs associated with owning a pet cockatiel.
To ensure the highest quality of living for your cockatiel friend, you need to make sure you are buying all the best equipment, food, toys and more.
It’s important to really plan your budget in advance so that you know if you can afford the initial investment of the bird itself, the cage, perches, toys, and insurance, as well as the recurring costs such as food and cleaning supplies.
We’ll go into detail here about what you need to care for your cockatiel, as well as how much these items cost on average.
Being a lifelong animal owner, I was initially worried about vet expenses as they can multiply quickly and unexpectedly.
I reached out to Sunset Animal Clinic to get an idea of what type of vet bills to expect. Here’s their answer:
Your initial visit will likely run about $100, and this includes a well check and a nail/wing clipping if necessary. Stool sample checks are about $30. After the initial visit, the bird will only need to be seen annually unless an emergency arises, which could lead to a high bill depending on its nature.
Average Cockatiel Cage Prices
The baseline price of a safe cockatiel cage is around $100. However, a larger cage that will keep your cockatiel happier can range from $200-$500. Quality cages will last a long time, so don’t be afraid to splurge on a nice cage that will last for your cockatiel’s full lifespan.
A large cage that your cockatiel feels comfortable and happy in is a super important investment as a new cockatiel owner.
Cockatiels require a cage that is at least 24”W x 24”D x 30”H. So make sure that no matter what cage you decide to purchase, it has at least these dimensions.
However, it is suggested that you get a cage that is significantly larger.
The more space your bird has to fly around when caged, the happier they will be.
Average Prices for Cockatiel Food
If your cockatiel is on the recommended diet of pellets, seeds, fruits, and vegetables, you can expect to spend around $25 per month on food. Cockatiels eat a wide range of foods; therefore, depending on what you feed your cockatiel, you may have different costs.
The cost of $25 per month is based on the recommended diet for a cockatiel of 20% seeds, 60% pellets, and 20% fruits and vegetables.
Be sure to check with our article “What Can Cockatiels Eat?” for a detailed list of safe foods and what foods to avoid at all costs.
Depending on the cost of pet food and produce in your area, you could be looking to spend more or less than this average number, which is based on average seed, pellets, and produce costs.
Unlike cages, food is a recurring cost and responsible pet owners will make sure to budget for their pet’s food in their monthly expenses.
If you are buying a pet cockatiel, make sure you have enough money to feed your cockatiel properly in order to keep him or her happy and healthy.
Average Prices for Cockatiel Toys
Cockatiel toys cost around $12 on average. Cockatiels are very smart animals and can get bored easily if they do not have something to entertain them. This is why it is essential that you consider the cost of toys when budgeting the total cost for your new cockatiel.
Cockatiels can chew up and wear down their toys, and they may need to be replaced, so this may be a recurring cost.
Also, cockatiels will enjoy the stimulation of fun, new toys, so take this into consideration when planning monthly budgets.
Average Prices for Additional Perches
The average cost for a cockatiel perch is $7. Perches are a must-have for cockatiel cages, and your cockatiel may not be happy in their cage without at least a couple of perches, so make sure to consider the cost of perches in your total investment.
The cage you buy may come with perches, but if it doesn’t, you’ll need to consider buying perches.
There are a variety of suitable perches available, including natural wood, ropes, swings, and pedicure perches, and most birds will appreciate having more than one type.
Average Prices for Pet Bird Insurance
Pet insurance for your cockatiel is very important to consider and could save you money while providing peace of mind. A basic pet bird insurance plan costs around $10 per month. However, costs can be around $30-$50 per month for a more comprehensive plan.
Cockatiels are prone to bacterial and viral infections, as well as other health issues that may prompt a veterinarian visit that costs a significant chunk of money.
If you wish to have your cockatiel’s health needs covered by insurance, it is relatively affordable and should be considered in the total cost of owning a cockatiel.
Average Prices for Bird-Safe Cleaning Supplies
A bird-safe cleaning spray costs about $4. Cleaning supplies for your cockatiel’s cage are essential to his or her health. Your cockatiel’s cage and food and water bowls should be kept exceptionally clean to prevent your bird from contracting bacterial infections.
Be aware that many traditional household cleaning products, such as carpet deodorizers, oven cleaners, bleach, and pine oil, to name a few, can be toxic to birds.
You may need to rethink your entire house cleaning strategy and purchase only products that are safe to use around birds.
Are Cockatiels High Maintenance?
Cockatiels are relatively high maintenance as they require a lot of interaction, upkeep, and time out of their cage.
Cockatiels are very social and prefer to be around their human companions as much as possible and should not be left alone for long periods.
Though not very time consuming, regular cleaning of the cage and accessories is mandatory.
Is It Better to Have One or Two Cockatiels?
Cockatiels do not need to be kept in pairs, but if you don’t have ample time to spend with your cockatiel, it might be better to get two.
If you work full time away from the house, it might be better to have two cockatiels so that they can keep each other company.
However, if you work from home and have lots of free time, it’s fine to just have one.
Is a Cockatiel a Good First Bird?
A cockatiel is a good bird for a first-time bird owner as long as you do your research on how to care for them.
Although they require a lot of time-input, they are relatively easy to care for and don’t require an expert bird caretaker to be happy.
A cockatiel makes for a fun and exciting first pet. However, they do require a significant investment of your time and money.
If you are planning on getting a pet cockatiel, make sure you do your research to figure out what kind of cockatiel you want, as well as how much you’ll need to spend on supplies and food so your cockatiel can live a long and happy life.