Black Palm Cockatoo

The black palm cockatoo is the largest of the cockatoo species, popular as pets all across the world, despite the expensive costs that go into acquiring one. It is native to North Queensland in Australia and the island of New Guinea in the Pacific.

Palm Cockatoo

Palm Cockatoo

Black Palm Cockatoo

Black Palm Cockatoo

Scientific Classification

Kingdom Animalia
Phylum Chordata
Class Aves
Order Psittaciformes
Superfamily Cacutuoidea
Family Cacatuidae
Subfamily Cacatuinae
Tribe Microglossini
Genus Proboscieger
Scientific Name Proboscieger aterrrimus
Black Palm Cockatoos

Black Palm Cockatoos

Golaith Black Palm Cockatoo

Golaith Black Palm Cockatoo

Quick Information

Other Names Great black cockatoo, palm cockatoo, goliath cockatoo
Size 1.6-2.23 foot (49-68 cm)
Weight 2.01-2.65 lb (912-1202 gm)
Wingspan Around 5.41 foot (165 cm)
Color Adults: Slate-black body with an entirely black tail; dark gray beak; a red facial patch devoid of feathers, which turns crimson when the bird is excited

Juveniles: Similar to adults, pale yellow edges to underside feathers; shorter crests,  white-tipped bill;  and a white eye-ring

Subspecies
  • P. a. aterrimus
  • P. a. goliath
  • P. a. macgillivrayi
  • P. a. stenolophus
Distribution Queensland, Australia, and New Guinea
Habitat Woodlands and rainforests.
Sounds and Calls One of the loudest among cockatoos; high-pitched calls and whistles
Clutch 1 egg every two years
Incubation Period 30-35 days
Lifespan Wild: 40-60 years
Captive: up to 90 years, sometimes even 100.
Diet Leaf buds, fruits, nuts, seeds, berries.
IUCN Conservation Status Least Concern
Palm Cockatoo Bird

Palm Cockatoo Bird

Palm Cockatoo Drumming

Palm Cockatoo Drumming

As pets

This bird’s celebrity-like ways and impressive looks have made it a preferred pet choice.

Housing

Keep your bird in a robust and durable walk-in aviary with a length of at least 23 foot (7 meters). You can keep them with other birds ( same species), as they are not aggressive. Provide perches so that it may fly around freely. You can even throw in chewables like pine cones or wood. Adding other accessories like ladders, plastic swings, and link chains would help to keep it entertained.

Palm Cockatoo Images

Palm Cockatoo Images

Temperature

The temperature should never go below freezing. Provide a retreat for the bird to move into to hide from direct sunlight.

Temperament and Behavior

Black palm cockatoos have resourceful and intelligent personalities. They will require constant interaction and adequate training from a reasonably young age for them to be at their friendliest.

Palm Cockatoo Chick

Palm Cockatoo Chick

Feeding

You can feed it pine nuts, walnuts, and almonds as well as maize, wheat, and corn.

Baby Palm Cockatoo

Baby Palm Cockatoo

Care

Owing to its size, one should take utmost care while handling the black palm cockatoo. You may throw a towel onto your bird’s head to pacify it, while a well-trained bird can be controlled by grasping its head with one hand and the legs with the other. Keep an eye on the cheek crests, an excited bird’s crest will give away its psychological dismay.

Palm Cockatoo Flying

Palm Cockatoo Flying

Health problems

Watch out for symptoms like lack of appetite, weakness, drooping wings, depression, and tail bobbing as they might be a precursor to an underlying illness.

It is prone to suffer from bacterial infections, protozoal infections, parrot feather and beak disease, and kidney problems.

Price

The black palm cockatoo is an expensive bird, coming with a price tag of $16,000.

Palm Cockatoo Pictures

Palm Cockatoo Pictures

Interesting facts

  • A unique ritual of the black palm cockatoo during the mating season is a drumming display done by the males, though the reason behind the same is a mystery. It is done with a stick broken off from the branch of a tree, drummed on the hollowed out bark of a tree. Since the mating happens within these hollows, the female can gauge the quality of the hollowness and choose accordingly.
  • A black palm cockatoo can say ‘hello’ in a surprisingly human-like voice.
  • Their beak is so large, especially the upper one, that the two mandibles don’t meet for most of their length.
  • They are monogamous and mate for life.
  • A captive palm cockatoo at an Australian zoo has been documented to have survived for 80+ years.
Palm Cockatoo

Palm Cockatoo

Palm Cockatoo Drumming Video

References:

  1. https://www.qld.gov.au/environment/assets/documents/plants-animals/biodiversity/palm-cockatoo.pdf
  2. http://animaldiversity.org/accounts/Probosciger_aterrimus/#lifespan_longevity
  3. https://www.beautyofbirds.com/palmcockatoos.html
  4. http://www.susanclubb.com/pdfs/palmcock.pdf

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