how long can a cockatiel survive without food

Pet birds can live a long time but how long can a cockatiel survive without food? No worries. Let’s find out. Birds are a very interesting species and they are known to have different personalities. If you properly care for them, they can be fascinating pets.

Generally, cockatiels can survive at least 48 hours without food. On the other hand, depending on the size of your parrot, three to four days is usually the maximum. You should still feed your pet during this time. If you leave it for that long, it could cause harm and possibly kill your pet.

Normally, a cockatiel’s ability to survive is highly dependent on the diet you provide. They can survive on seeds but eats fruits and vegetables as well. Cockatiels will die if they lack certain nutrients. So, be careful. Bird health is similar to human health.

Fortunately, I’ll discuss how long cockatiels can survive without food and what types of foods cockatiels need to survive.

How Long Can A Cockatiel Survive Without Food?

how many days can a cockatiel live without food

If you have a pet cockatiel, it’s important to know how long a cockatiel can survive without food. A cockatiel’s lifespan is limited by its age and the physical effects of aging on its body.

Primarily, a cockatiel’s time without food is shorter than any other bird. Cockatiels can survive without food for only 24 to 48 hours. Cockatiels typically live for 10 to 15 years. As a result, they are more susceptible to illness. Also, they will not last longer than two days without food because of their weakened immune systems. Some experts claim healthy cockatiels can live for up to three days, but that is likely an exaggeration.

In fact, if you have a healthy cockatiel and you want to keep it for a long time, you should consider expanding its diet. The cockatiel is an important member of the parrot family because it can survive for short periods without food.

How Much Food Do Cockatiels Need To Survive?

Cockatiels are fun to have as pets. They are very entertaining and require little maintenance. Apart from feeding them, it’s easy – literally. Every day, cockatiels eat breakfast and dinner just like people do.

A cockatiel should be fed twice or thrice times a day on seeds. Eat around 30 – 40 grams per day. Cockatiels can eat healthy nuts, seeds, or pellets a day.

how long can a cockatiel go without food

Now, I’ll share with you the following diet and how much food cockatiel needs to survive.

Vitamin-Enriched Water

A vitamin-enriched water source for your cockatiel is essential. You don’t need supplements if your bird is on a healthy diet. It is better to start off with a healthy diet rather than supplement a poor one.

Keep Your Cockatiel’s Diet Rich Calcium

Calcium is necessary for the formation of bones and brain function, among other things, rich food including spinach, kale, okra (ladies finger), bok choy, broccoli, Chinese cabbage, mustard greens, collard greens, almonds, dried figs, kidney beans, chickpeas, soybeans, sesame seeds, strawberries, oranges, pumpkin seeds. Beans must be cooked before consumption. Do not feed raw beans. They contain a poison that is highly toxic to birds.

Cocktails Balanced Diet

There are four components to a balanced diet for cockatiels: seeds 25%, pellets 25%, vegetables and fruit 25%, grains 15% and table food 10%. Keep these things in mind.


Your birds’ diet should contain 25% seed, which should be of good quality. Seeds provide essential vitamins and fats for birds, and they exercise the muscles at the top and bottom of their jaws. The seeds are like millet: canary seed, wheat, oats, niger seed, rice, and a few sunflower seeds.


Your cocktail diet is 25 percent made up of pellets. They should also be organic and free from artificial colors, preservatives, and artificial flavors, like Harrisons and Roudybush.

Vegetables And Vitamins

You should consume 25% dark leafy vegetables in your cocktail diet. They are the healthiest vegetables and are high in vitamin A. Fruit should be in season and high in vitamins.


A cocktail diet should contain 15% grains, such as cooked rice, pasta, corn, whale grain, toast, cooked oats, etc.

Table Food

The table food that you provide your bird should account for 10% of its diet, including boiled eggs, boiled chicken, and cooked white fish such as cod (no smell fish).

Note: Never consume alcohol, avocados, caffeine, chocolate or any other unsafe food.

How Long Can A Baby Cockatiel Go Without Food And Water?

Newly hatched cockatiels need to be fed more frequently than mature birds. Consequently, they are considered particularly vulnerable. They lack the reserving capacity of older cockatiels.

The bird is born blind, with few feathers, and completely helpless. Baby cockatiels should receive food and water every two hours. You should start feeding them in the morning and continue until midnight. A baby cockatiel is more delicate than an older one.

Accordingly, a baby cockatiel is fed by its parents inside a cage, which meets its daily caloric requirement. So don’t separate a chick from its parents unless it’s essential.

Also read: How To Take Care Of A Baby Cockatiel?

How Many Days Can A Cockatiel Live Without Food?

Cockatiels are beautiful and fun to watch. To stay alive and healthy, they need a healthy diet at least twice a day. When you first got a cockatiel, you may have asked yourself how long a cockatiel can go without food.

how long can a cockatiel survive without food

Cockatiels have a clever metabolism and are capable of going 24-48 hours without eating before their health suffers. They can live for two to three days without food. However, it is true that old or sick cockatiels may start eating less because of the pain of the inability to move properly.

What Is The Best Way To Tell If A Cockatiel Is Hungry?

When they’re hungry, cockatiels often chirp or make other sounds to draw your attention. Cockatiels will sometimes move around constantly as if they were trying to alert you that they need something. The following reasons can help us determine whether the cockatiel is hungry.

Screaming Begins

As a pet bird owner, I’m sure you know that if the keets don’t eat, they can get cranky. Cockatiels are addicted to food. Your cockatiel will start screaming and begrudgingly bite you.

Ensure that your bird has access to the treat it enjoys most by discovering which treat the bird really enjoys. It’s sensible behavior because there might be the possibility of having some other problems.

Moving Its Head Up And Down

The cockatiel will bob its head up and down rapidly when it is hungry after being away for quite some time. If the cage doesn’t already have food, bring some home so it can eat.

Final Thoughts

If you’re curious about how long a cockatiel can survive without food, it can survive for at least 48 hours. You should still feed your pet during this time.

Generally, cockatiels need to be fed several times a day, in the day and evening. It’s now clear how cockatiels survive and how much food they need. This can be applied to your own pet as well.

But if you are going on a short trip and can’t feed the cockatiel for a day.

Alternatively, you can leave some seed in the cockatiel’s bowl if you can’t give it enough water before you leave. Your cockatiel would survive for two days without food or even water.

Frequently Asked Questions

How would you know when your cockatiel is dying?

There are certain symptoms that can alert you that your pet bird may need medical treatment.

When you notice that your bird has puffy feathers, is shivering and shaking, vomiting, changes in feces and urine lacks appetite, or appears to be having trouble breathing. Please do not hesitate to contact your avian veterinarian if your bird shows signs of any of these ailments. 

What should you do if your cockatiel is not eating properly? 

Your cockatiel may not be eating because of a change in diet. Millet spray is a favorite food of cockatiels, even when they don’t feel well.

Millet is high in calories, so it will provide some nourishment while your cockatiel adjusts. You can feed very tame cockatiels from your hand.

How to save a dying cockatiel?

The best thing to do if your cockatiel feels sick is to take it to your veterinarian. If your vet can’t help you with your care, they might give you the name of another vet that specializes in birds. Even if you do everything in your power to help them and they are still going to die of their illness.

I suggest you should let your veterinarian put them down. You should contact a professional who knows how to handle the situation in order to ensure a smooth and painless transition.

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