Moluccan Cockatoo

The Moluccan cockatoo, originating in Indonesia, is one of the largest of white cockatoos. Usually, females are larger than males, and they are all monogamous by nature. Presently their numbers are rapidly decreasing in the wild due to their habitat loss.

Moluccan Cockatoo

Scientific Classification

Kingdom Animalia
Phylum Chordata
Class Aves
Order Psittaciformes
Superfamily Cacatuoidea
Family: Cacatuidae
Subfamily Cacatuinae
Tribe: Cacatuini
Genus Cacatua
Subgenus Cacatua
Scientific Name Cacatua moluccensis


Quick Information

Other names Salmon-Crested Cockatoo
Size        17.8-19.6 inches( 46 -50 cm)
Wingspan 38 – 42 inches (96-106cm)
Weight 640-1025 grams
Color     White and rose pink body, red-orange crest, yellow underside of tail feathers and underwings, black bill and feet. Males exhibit dark brown to black eyes and females exhibit brown to burgundy eyes.
Distribution       Maluku Islands of Indonesia
Habitat Lowland forests
Sounds & calls  Screaming and shrieking; poor mimicking ability
Clutch size          2-3 eggs
Incubation          Over 1 month
Fledging              3 months
Breeding season Once a year within December to March
Breeding age Around 3 years
Lifespan 50-65 years; sometimes 70 years
Diet       Fruits, nuts, and seeds
IUCN Conservation Status Vulnerable

Moluccan Cockatoo Images

Moluccan Cockatoo Pictures

As pets

Owning a Moluccan cockatoo is a time-consuming affair since it needs to stay in a constant association with its owner to be in a jovial state. Also, its loud screaming might put you in awkward situations if you live in apartments, so unless you have friendly neighbors and enough time in hands, adopting this bird is not your cup of tea.


A steel cage painted with non-toxic colors with a size of minimum 2 ft. x 2 ft. x 3 ft is ideal for your cockatoo. The bar spacing should be of ½ inch, making it convenient for the bird to climb as it wishes. The cage should also be free from any possible obstruction for its wings’ movement.


Ensure a moderate temperature for your bird and do not expose it to direct sunlight for too long.

Baby Moluccan Cockatoo

Wild Moluccan Cockatoo


If it is happy and content in its owner’s association, it profusely offers unconditional love to the owner with an urge of being cuddled, in a lack of which it may turn aggressive or depressed to the point of self-mutilation. They are also agile and inquisitive, always eyeing for chewing toys and getting out of the cage.

Their crest perfectly mirrors their moods as a raised crest implies the bird is either aggressive or frustrated and a lowered crest stands for its agreeable state of mind.


Fresh fruits and vegetables along with dietary supplements are needed. Fatty foods like nuts and seeds should be given in moderation.


The thumb rule of having a buoyant Moluccan cockatoo is to always keep up with its level of energy. Involve your bird in stimulating activities and let it spend at least three to four hours outside the cage in a secure area. Also, never deprive it of your company and attention. Always be watchful of its activities as this bird makes an excellent escape artist.

Health problems

Some of the common problems that a Moluccan cockatoo is susceptible to are – psittacine beak and feather disease, bumblefoot, fatty liver disease, obesity, lipomas, diarrhea. Ensure to provide a professional help for a quick recovery.

Moluccan Cockatoos

Moluccan Cockatoo Bird


For unweaned birds, the price range is around $1,699 which increases up to $2,199 for weaned birds.

Interesting fact

  • This highly emotional bird often goes into serious depression if it gets separated from its partner.

Video: Moluccan Cockatoo Dancing



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