How JustAnswer Works:
  • Ask an Expert
    Experts are full of valuable knowledge and are ready to help with any question. Credentials confirmed by a Fortune 500 verification firm.
  • Get a Professional Answer
    Via email, text message, or notification as you wait on our site. Ask follow up questions if you need to.
  • Go back-and-forth until satisfied
    Rate the answer you receive.
Ask Edele Grey Your Own Question
Edele Grey
Edele Grey, Veterinarian
Category: Bird
Satisfied Customers: 416
Experience:  BSc, MVB
Type Your Bird Question Here...
Edele Grey is online now

I’ve rescued a cockatiel and a bourke from an owner who has

Customer Question

I’ve rescued a cockatiel and a bourke from an owner who has recently died, the cockatiel has got significant feather loss, totally bald head at the back, no crest and loss of feathers on his upper leg, the bourke seems in better condition, I believe the tiel has had this feather loss for a number of years, is there anything I can do to help him?
JA: I'll do all I can to help. When did you first notice the cockatiel was losing his feathers?
Customer: At least a year I think
JA: Is his skin bumpy or itchy as well?
Customer: I’ve not been able to go near him yet, I think he’s a bit traumatised with the house move
JA: And what's the cockatiel's name and age?
Customer: his skin looks smooth though
JA: Is there anything else the Vet should know?
Customer: His name is***** don’t know his ageCustomer: Chat is completed
Submitted: 10 days ago.
Category: Bird
Expert:  Edele Grey replied 10 days ago.


Thank you for your patience, there's not always a vet available. You're through to Dr. Edele, a European based vet.

I have some questions to help me advise you about Charlie.

Does Charlie seem to scratch or rub the bald area?

Are his wing and other feathers normal?

Did he and the Bourke's parrot share an aviary?

How is he otherwise (eating/drinking/pooping)?

Customer: replied 10 days ago.
I’ve not seen him rub the bald area, his wings seem a bit raggedy. They’re clipped and I’ve not see him fly yet, the food bowls he arrived with were filthy so I’ve replaced them. He and the bourke parrot share a cage and I believe they always have done. He’s been eating really well, I don’t think he was fed for three days after his previous owner passed away, they were overlooked, so he’s been really hungry. Poops seem normal. Their living environment appears to have been very unhygienic so I’m not sure if that has had any effect on his condition, although the bourke appears to be in better condition than him.
Expert:  Edele Grey replied 9 days ago.
It’s possible that his head is balding from their cage being a little too small for him and this is likely given the information you’ve provided and that he’s not showing any scratching/rubbing behavior. You can take some photos now and again in a few weeks to see if there are any noticeable differences that may show feathers developing under the skin. It’s also possible that he may always be bald if he lost them this way as he may have damaged the follicles.