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Cockatiel Vs Conure: Identification, Differences, Similarities

Cockatiel Vs Conure

Since 5000 BC, birds have been domesticated, first for fighting competitions and then for companionship. In modern days, some popular birds are cockatiels and conures, which make great pets for first-time owners. Cockatiels and conures look alike, and also happen to come from the parrot family. 

So, what are the differences and similarities between conure and cockatiels? Cockatiels and conures share several physical aspects like size, and the fact that both can learn from humans. But, they differ in personality, where conures are loud and curious, while cockatiels are calm and cautious.

When choosing either of the parrots as your companion, you should learn as much information about each. Read on to learn the similarities and differences between the two birds.

Cockatiel Vs Conure: Basic Identification, Differences, Similarities

Cockatiels, also called weiro, are parrots of the family Cockatoos, mainly found in Australia. They’re small-sized, often in a gray body, with a darker gray back and their wings have white edges. They have yellow faces with round patches on their cheeks, which are orange.

Cockatiels are more than 18 different types, each having its color. There are more than 50 primary cockatiel colors, with the most common one being gray. Generally, cockatiels are known as quiet and calm birds.

Cockatiel Vs Conure

Conures are small-sized parrots of the family Arinae, found in central and south America. The popular species include the green cheek conures which have gray barring on their chest and reddish tales. Their beak and feet are gray, and they also have black plumage with an eye ring.

Conures are more than 45 species, with each having its unique characteristics. They come in many colors, like blue, red, green, orange, and yellow. Popular species include green cheek conure, Crimson-bellied conure, and Nanday conures.

If you’re looking for a calm pet bird that will not make a lot of noise, what you need is a cockatiel. But, if you don’t mind birds that are bold about expressing themselves, choose a conure without a doubt. Either of these birds will bring warmth and joy to you if you’re a bird lover. You only need to choose one based on their personalities, which we will address as you read on. 

What Are the Differences Between a Cockatiel and a Conure?

Both cockatiels and conures make great pets and share a lot of similarities. However, there are various physical and personality differences that give each uniqueness. In the following Table are notable differences between cockatiels and conures.

What Are the Differences Between a Cockatiel and a Conure
 Physical Differences
Cockatiels have beautiful erectile crests with feathers.Conures have a round head without a crest.
The common color for cockatiels is gray with yellow cheek marks.Conures come in many colors, including green, yellow and blue.
Cockatiels are longer and can reach up to 13 inches. They can weigh up to 120 grams.Conures grow up to 12 inches and weigh up to 120 grams depending on the species.
Personality Differences
Cockatiels are gentle while playing and interacting.Conures are aggressive and can damage items around the cage if not provided with toys.
Cockatiels are cautious, especially while interacting with a foreign object.Conures are curious and bold. They don’t shy away from new things and people.
Cockatiels whistle and sing, though in a low sound.Conures also sing, but they are very loud. A Nanday conure cab chirps as loud as 155 decibels.
Other Differences
Female cockatiels breed at 24 months and males at 18 months.Some breeders can wait more than 36 months to breed a conure.
Cockatiels have a lifespan of between 7 – 15 in captivity.Conures can live up to 30 years in captivity.
Cockatiels like cuddles and scratches.Conures are less interested in scratches and sometimes nip when excited.

If you’re considering one of these birds but you aren’t sure which one to go for, now you know. The above differences should guide you into choosing one that rhymes with your personality. We will also look at the similarities and who knows, you may end up buying the two. 

See also:  Can Cockatiels Eat Rice? Know The Bran For Your Bird!

What Are the Similarities Between Cockatiels and Conures?

Other than sharing the same family Psittacidae, these birds also share other similarities. The notable ones are their beak shapes, which like any other parrot, are curved with the larger upper beak. Following are some similarities between cockatiels and conures.

What Are the Similarities Between Cockatiels and Conures

1. Ability to Talk

Both cockatiels and conures can learn to talk and mimic most of the words said to them. However, their vocabulary is not as great as that of African gray parrots, who hold a record for the most words and sounds.

2. Their Sizes

Despite cockatiels being an inch longer than conures, they both weigh the same. Also, a young cockatiel will be almost the same size as a young conure of the same age.


3. Share the Same Diet

Cockatiels and conures can share the same diet of commercial pellet seeds. They both eat seeds and nuts in the wild, and they’re comfortable with most seed-based diets.

4. Require Similar Cage size

Cockatiels and conures both require big cage sizes where they can exercise and fly around. In the wild, these parrots can fly up to 30 miles a day, hence the wider cage requirements.

5. Require Similar Care

Caring for a cockatiel is almost like caring for a conure, as they share many similarities. Their cages should have toys, a bath, a water bowl, a food bowl, and a perch. During the breeding season, both will require a nesting area.


6. Affected by Similar Illnesses

Cockatiels and conures are susceptible to diseases like proventricular dilatation, affecting the nervous and digestive systems. They can also get psittacine beak and feather diseases which affect most parrots’ feathers and beaks.

See also:  Cockatiel Vomiting or Regurgitating: Causes, Treatment, Precautions

Should I Keep a Cockatiel or a Conure?

Both parrots have qualities that can motivate any bird lover to choose them. Cockatiels are calm and composed, while conures are active and more fun. They both make great pets since they can easily be tamed and taught. They have longer lifespans allowing you more time with them as your companion.

Each also has cons, like the loudness and destructiveness of a conure and the excessive preening dust in cockatiels. If you’re living in an apartment, conures won’t be a great choice because of their loudness. Their loud chirps can also cause hearing problems for people with tinnitus symptoms. However, you can care for both birds, though not in the same cage, especially for the first days.

Should I Keep a Cockatiel or a Conure

If it crosses your mind that you keep both bird types, then be mindful of each. Most times cockatiels are bullied, especially if the other type is larger. Although they may learn to live together with time, keeping them together is not advisable. Again, some conure species are relatively larger than cockatiels, something that would frighten the cockatiels. 


It’s likely that you still have some issues you feel we have not covered. Below are some frequently asked questions that will answer the lingering questions you may have.

1. Can a Cockatiel and Conure Live Together?

Cockatiels and Conures can live together, though not in the same cage. The two parrots require the same care and setup, which makes keeping both easier. However, due to the different personalities of each bird, it’s best to keep them separately, only meeting occasionally.

2. Are Cockatiels Better Than Conures?

Both cockatiels and conures make great pets because of their trainability and easier management. A cockatiel might edge over a conure because of its tidiness, and they cause less damage. Cockatiels are also calm, unlike conures that are loud enough to hear through a thin wall.

3. Why Should I Pick a Conure Over a Cockatiel?

Many qualities make a conure better than a cockatiel. Conures are masters of stunts and tricks and are almost always hyperactive, unlike cockatiels. Also, conures prefer to socialize and play with their cage mates rather than be petted, which favors those who dislike constant petting.


For bird lovers, it’s never easy to select a bird to care for, especially if there is more than one choice. The situation can become easier if you compare both pets to find the one with suitable qualities. Afterward, you can base your choice on these facts and select your pet.

Cockatiels and conure share many similarities from their care to their diets. In the same way, the birds have some differences, like in their personalities where one is calm, whereas the other is loud. However, do not shy away from keeping both birds though in different cages.


Peter Kaestner

Hi there, my name is Peter Kaestner and I am the owner of As a avid bird watcher and enthusiast with a passion for ornithology, I want to share my knowledge and experience with other bird lovers through this blog. As someone who regularly participates in bird-related forums and groups online, I am dedicated to helping others learn more about these amazing creatures. However, it's important to note that while I am happy to share my expertise and advice, it is always crucial to consult with an avian veterinarian before making any decisions that could potentially impact your bird's health or well-being. Your bird's health and happiness should always be your top priority, and consulting with a professional is the best way to ensure that you are making informed decisions on their behalf. I hope that through my blog, I can help make a positive difference in the lives of birds and the people who care for them. Whether you are an experienced bird owner or just starting out, I encourage you to use this resource as a way to learn more about these fascinating animals and how to provide them with the best possible care.View Author posts